Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Freddy Cushing

We spent the afternoon with Freddy Cushing at his Newport home, interviewing him for the movie and watching film footage of Newport as far back as 1919. One clip, from 1940, has the young Eileen Slocum at Bailey's beach. What a find! And Freddy was great on camera, and a gracious host. He later showed us the main Cushing house, on one of the most beautiful spots in all of Newport (or the East Coast, for that matter). No wonder the makers of Evening, the 2007 movie starring Vanessa Redgrave, Meryl Streep and Claire Danes decided to shoot much of their movie there.
Pictured here:
-- The Cushing house.
-- Freddy Cushing looking out at the wind-swept Atlantic from the porch.
-- Associate producer Calvin Miller on the rocks.
-- Director Dave Bettencourt on the lawn.
-- The setting sun.
-- Freddy and me during the shoot in Freddy's studio. He's a noted filmmaker himself and loves the art as much as we do.

---- Wayne

More Press; Newport in New York

Producer/writer G. Wayne Miller wrote a piece about narrative storytelling on the page and on the screen for DocumentaryTech, a web site devoted to "exploring the techniques and technology of documentary filmmaking," Sept. 25, 2009. BEHIND THE HEDGEROW was prominently included, along with a photograph of an on-location shoot of prominent Newporter Nick Brown.

The Providence Phoenix published a story about A VERY DIFFERENT SENATOR, Miller's forthcoming biography of Claiborne Pell, in its issue of Sept. 24, 2009, and HEDGEROW was included.

The biography brought Miller over the past weekend to Fort Ticonderoga in New York, which has been in Pell family hands since 1820 -- a place dear to Claiborne's heart. Pictured here is Robert Pell-deChame, family genealogist, with one of the fort's canons -- donated, Robert told me, by John Slocum, Eileen's husband. Small world...

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Mid-production, dovetailing

As the last days of summer tick down, Dave and I are preparing to meet this Friday to map our strategy for the home stretch -- the production stretch, that is. We plan to go post-production in January, and there's a lot left to do before then, including some additional interviews, transferring footage, transcribing interviews, scanning stills, and the list goes on. And on. But overall, I would say we are in good shape.
On of our tasks will be lining up sponsorships to help defray costs. Information on becoming a sponsor, along with more details about the film, are, as always, at the HEDGEROW site. For sponsorship information, click on, you guessed it, the sponsor link.
HEDGEROW is dovetailing nicely with the biography Eagle Peak Media partner G. Wayne Miller is writing of the late U.S. Senator Claiborne Pell, pictured here with John Fitzgerald Kennedy, a good friend, and Caiborne's wife Nuala. Pell the 16th-longest serving senator ever and a legislative giant -- he created the Pell Grant college assistance program, the legislation that established the National Endowments for the Arts and the Humanities, the legislation that helped form the Law of the Seas, etc. etc. He was a quirky and colorful man, truly a one-of-a-kind character. And he was from one of Newport's (and America's) oldest and wealthiest families - and he married into a second fortune (A & P) when he wed the wonderful Nuala, who we are hoping to put on camera, too.
Be sure to check out A VERY DIFFERENT SENATOR, working title for the book. If you have a Pell story, I'd love to hear it -- reach me through the site.
And join the Facebook Claiborne Pell biography page.

Thursday, September 3, 2009


We were back "on location" at Eileen Slocum's Bellevue Avenue estate last night, filming two of Eileen's grandchildren: Sherman Powell, son of Eileen's daughter Beryl, and Irene Muriel Sherman Trevor Brooke (pictured here with me), daughter of Eileen's daughter Margy. Sherman, whose grandfather was the legendary congressman from Harlem, Adam Clayton Powell, recently retired as a captain from the U.S. Army. Irene lives now in London. Her wedding, like most of Eileen's children and grandchildren, made The New York Times. Both Sherman and Irene were wonderful.
-- Wayne