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Diggerz: Black Lung Rising filming in Trinidad

TRINIDAD — “Not in Trinidad,” film producer Kirk Loudon said recently. “Normally you will hit roadblocks with permits and/or city politics…butnot in Trinidad!” He was speaking of the progress he and his crew have made in getting cooperation for Diggerz: Black Lung Rising, scheduled to begin shooting on July 13. “Whenever you begin a project like this, you are always concerned whether locations are available, or if the town is comfortable with something like this – shutting streets down or taking over public spaces for filming.” Loudon praised this broadly-based reception saying, “We have had access to just about any location, the sheriff’s department, the college, and the people. We are casting 90% of our film from locals or from the surrounding areas. We are so honored to have Trinidad and the southern Colorado region on our team. To anyone looking for great locations and great people to shoot a film, documentary, or commercial, I would not look any further than the historic town of Trinidad.” Writer/director Loudon and writer/ cinematographer David Craig have been conducting casting calls in Trinidad since June 8 and report that the results have been beyond expectations saying, “The talent here is amazing.” “Diggerz is a horror film based on the mining stories of the region. We took some of the history of the

town and rolled it into the story,” he said. One of the advantages this program has over other productions is that “horror films have a built in audience. You already have a crowd there that is willing to see it,” he told a reporter in a recent interview. Peanut Butter & Jelly Productions are utilizing the combined resources of Eye to Eye and Fearless Films to realize this project. Diggerz is the first independent production filmed in this area since Big Bad John was made in 1990 and Conagher, which was shot primarily in Huerfano County but under the auspices of the Trinidad/Las Animas County Film Office in 1991. The documentary, Kit Carson was made by WGBH in 2008 for the PBS series, “American Experience.” Last year, Loudon produced and directed Dawn of the Crescent Moon which premiered at the 2014 TrindieFest. The most notable film ever made in Las Animas County and southeastern Colorado was Badlands in 1973. Even though it has achieved cult status and is one of only six Colorado based movies to be accepted by the Library of Congress Registry for its “aesthetic, cultural and historical value,” it never achieved general popularity. A teaser trailer for Diggerz will be screened at the TrindieFest film festival in September and a later preview screening will also be held locally. Cy Michaels, chairperson of the city tourism board, noted, “We are all lucky that the Loudons have worked hard over the years to make this film festival continue to grow and happen here.”