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Shooting wraps for 'My Abandonment'
Shooting wrapped recently for "My Abandonment," the film adaptation of local author Peter Rock's novel of the same name.
A theatrical release date is still to be determined, once filmmakers secure a distributor for the movie. Neither filmmakers nor Rock were able to divulge much about the film, but we do know a few details.
It was shot over 31 days at various locations in Oregon and around Portland, starting in April.
The film stars newcomer actress Thomasin McKenzie and Ben Foster, who is known most recently for his 2016 role in "Hell or High Water." The director is Debra Granik, who directed Jennifer Lawrence in her Academy-Award winning role in "Winter's Bone."
The story is a true one, and bringing to life the 2004 tale of a homeless father and daughter, Frank and Ruth, who were living in Forest Park, Portland's massive urban forest, undetected for four years. Ruth was said to have been "well-spoken beyond her years." Found by runners in the park, they were given outreach and "rescued," but then disappeared without a trace not long after following the father's severe paranoia of news outlets tracking their movements via helicopter. Rock, an English professor at Reed College, adapted the book from this information reported in The Oregonian between May and June 2004.
Foster will portray Frank, but in the movie he is called Will, while McKenzie's character is called Caroline.
A news release about Granik's adapted story describes the plot:
"When authorities pluck them from their hidden world, where they lived peacefully and practically, Caroline and Will must embark on an increasingly erratic journey in search of a place to call their own."
Although the story focuses on Forest Park, scenes were shot at Eagle Fern Park in Clackamas County.
Mark Pogachefsky, the filmmakers' publicist, says that park provided a better setting than Forest Park.
Portlanders still will find scenes of their city, however — including Union Station, the Portland Aerial Tram and Oregon Health & Science University, and St. Johns Bridge.
Other filming locations include Squaw Mountain Ranch in Estacada and a farm in Newberg.
"We loved working in and around Portland and had a fantastic crew," says producer Linda Reisman. She says they were "grateful to the Oregon Governor's Office of Film & Television for their support."
The office promotes filming in the state.
Rock also was unable to speak much about the film, but says he was excited.
"I'm excited to see my story translated into this other dimension," he says. "The casting feels just right for me and as an admirer of Debra Granik's other films, I have faith in her vision."
Rock adds that he was happy they were able to film in and around Portland.
"Should be excellent," he says.