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Family flick from local filmmaker



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March 16, 2011 - Independence Township filmmaker Scott Cummins premiers his newest movie, "Summer School," 6 p.m., Wednesday, March 23, Waterford Kettering High School Auditorium, 2800 Kettering Drive.

"It's a great night to bring the family out – good message for kids and it's entertaining," said Cummins, 39.

The movie's cast includes his wife, Jill, and their children, Spencer, Sidney, and Cooper.

It's not his first movie with his children.

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"When my son was a third grader a couple years ago, he would see me making movies, so he wrote one. It was one page long and took a day. We had a good time making it," Scott said. "A couple years later, I asked what he thought about a full length movie. He was geeked about it."

"Summer School," a full-length, 90-minute film, tells the story of Christopher, falling behind in school after his father died. His friends try to help, but their efforts to get him into summer school fail due to an evil principal.

Their answer: start their own summer school.

"They teach each other whatever they're good at," Scott said. "It turned out a pretty solid movie."

This is his fifth feature film for his Squawking Parrot Productions.

"About nine years ago, I was on the computer and I noticed it had a program to make movies," he said. "I wrote novels, so I wanted to see if I could make a movie."

Casting his friends, he made the movie "Dexter Murphy's Expiration Date," a comedy.

"It was fun – won some awards," he said. "It was a blast, and the product turned out OK."

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For his second film, "Take Me Away," a drama, he held auditions and hired a film crew.

"That was extremely popular," he said. "All of them are so different."

Movies are his hobby – he makes a living as a professional poker player, and owns a screen-printing business as well as a charity poker club in Lake Orion, Parrot Poker.

"I'm a big Jimmy Buffet fan, a Parrothead," he said.

Plans include more movies, as well as episodes of his cable TV program "Poker Show."

"I do this because I love to do this," he said. "It's a blast to do. I love every part of it."

"Summer School" also features Clarkston residents Jacob Phillips, Cathe Feneley, and Lars Coventry, as well as Lizi and Toria Breitzman, Hunter and Logan Watson, Christopher Grenke, Gianni Figueroa, Steven Valentini, Julie Dowgiallo, and Kimberly Cruchon Brooks.

Admission is $1, all proceeds to benefit Waterford Schools. Doors open 5:30 p.m.

For more information, check www.squawkingparrot productions.com.

Phil is editor for The Clarkston News. He is a veteran of the first Iraq war, having served in the U.S. Army.
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