WARSAW — It was 3:30 in the morning on June 25, 2013, when production crews began to move into Lance’s NewMarket in North Webster. Lighting, sound, and film equipment took over aisles 1 and 12 and a handful of local “extras” arrived to set the background for two scenes of the independent film, “My Elusive Mychele.”
Filming at the hometown grocery store wrapped just before the 6 a.m. opening as the production crews raced to Applebee’s Restaurant in Warsaw, then to shops in downtown Syracuse to shoot additional scenes for the romantic drama.
“My Elusive Mychele” is an emotionally driven tale of first love and is based on the true story by writer, producer, and director, Ken Strong. In 2010 Strong released the paperback memoir, entitled “My Elusive Mychele,” which became available for worldwide distribution after finding an emotional connection with readers via his personal social media page. The memoir began as a simple note, developed into a published memoir, then came full circle when the film was shot in 2013.
Approximately 90 percent of the film was shot in Northern Indiana, primarily in the Kosciusko County towns of North Webster, Syracuse and Warsaw. Scenes were also filmed in Fort Wayne, Wolf Lake, Wabash, Huntington, Plainfield, Indianapolis and Cincinnati.
Strong was born in Indianapolis, where the story takes place, and has lived in Northern Indiana for the past 20 years. “I can’t imagine filming this movie anywhere else,” says Strong. “I feel that the natural backgrounds of Northern Indiana bring a beautiful and wholesome setting to this very personal film.” Many local actors and actresses had the opportunity to serve as background “extras” on some of the 54 locations used for the film.
The lead actress in the film, Kristin Quick, is a Warsaw graduate and was 18 years old at the time of filming. Quick writes, “Playing Michele was an adventure like I had never experienced before. When I read the novel, before being asked to play the part, I remember admiring Michele for her sweet character and ability to make the reader fall in love with her. I was nervous at first that I would not be able to live up to her character, but working with Ken Strong and receiving his first hand advice made the role really come together. I realized that Michele’s character was that of a relatable, all- American sweetheart, and it would do her the best honor if I just acted natural and in the moment. Filming for the summer was an experience that I will share with my children one day and gave me so much appreciation for the film industry.”
“My Elusive Mychele” was filmed over eight months, with its lead actors taking on the extreme challenge of aging 15 years through the film.
American Christian Music Artist, Warren Barfield, produced the films emotionally powerful soundtrack. Post production of the film took place at the KSP Cinematic Studios, which has recently relocated to Warsaw. The production company focuses on life story film-making, including weddings, birth stories, and video time capsules.
“My Elusive Mychele” premiered to a private audience in Warsaw on April 25th, 2014 and was immediately followed by the surprise wedding of the films director, Ken Strong, and executive producer, Corie Cox. The select audience of family, friends, cast, and crew had no idea that the night would conclude with the real life union.
“My Elusive Mychele” has been off to film festivals over the past 18 months and has just recently been released for public distribution via Square Market and for digital download on Amazon Movies. Additional information may be found at www.KSPcinematic.com.
“The story and film have a way of connecting with people on a personal level, like I had never imagined,” Strong says. One Amazon reviewer writes, ““Ken Strong’s ‘My Elusive Mychele’ is a must-read for anyone who has ever experienced the joy and sorrow of first love. It will make you laugh, it’ll make you cry, and it’ll make you remember a simpler time in life when all that mattered was being with that one person who stole your heart away for the very first time. Ken Strong’s compelling memoir expresses how true love should be: sweet, simple yet passionate, and totally unforgettable.”