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 Texas : Features : Columns : "Good Day for a Story"
"Good Day for a Story"

A Town With Star Quality
by Jeanne Moseley
The leaves are changing all through the neighborhood but are especially colorful as they frame the house across the street. It's a wonderful old house and not only does it look like the kind of house you see in TV commercials -- it actually is.

On several occasions, our little town has been used to film movies and commercials. And while you would think we'd become accustomed to all the hoopla that accompanies such activity, well, we don't.

Years ago, Sally Field was among the celebrities who lived among us while filming "Places in the Heart." While I never saw her, I heard many tales of those who did. Apparently she didn't win many hearts while in town because I heard she was easily annoyed by the locals.

It's my guess that movie stars come to areas like ours not only to work, but to escape from fans and the media. One can only imagine how bothered they must get when they can't walk down the aisle at Kroger's without being hounded for an autograph.

The weekend our neighbor's home was the filming location for a national TV commercial, we pretty much set up shop in our front yard. I called a few friends around town and they came bearing lawn chairs and coffee mugs. We got a few boxes of donuts and using our big trees for shade, proceeded to watch the "goings on" just a few feet away.

We had a good laugh at what the crew must think of us, but we swallowed all pride as we spent the day mesmerized as they performed their craft. The police were on hand directing traffic now and then, but mostly just strutted around proud they had something to do.

It's nothing to pass certain spots in town and hear someone say, "That's where they filmed that tornado scene." Or "That's the store where Robert Duvall drank a Coke when he was in town filming Tender Mercies." Yes. Proud of our contribution to good films is just part of who we are.

So like them or not, celebrities and movie stars will always find a welcome mat at our town's front door. And it's here that entertainment remains as easy as owning a good lawn chair.

Copyright 2001 Jeanne Moseley
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