On Tuesday night magenta colored light was pouring out of the windows of the former Magarity Ford dealership in Chestnut Hill. Inside was a film crew and a rock band.
Occasionally people stop to see what is going on inside the vintage building. “We took our car her to be serviced,” Jonathan Smith recalls. His father in-law, Fred Winston states, “I think it is great to see this happening.” Magarity Ford closed in November 2008. The building at 8200 Germantown Ave. is scheduled to be demolished this fall to make room for Bowman Properties’ retail/residential complex.
The building’s final act
The Philadelphia band 56 Men chose the Magarity building for its location to shoot a music video. The film crew was made up of Temple University students.
The band is working on a second album with a mix of alternative, pop and rock. On this night, the music they played seemed a good tribute to the old Magarity Ford building. Missing but not so hard to imagine in this setting; a shiny red convertible, fitted with an eight-track player and ready for adventure.
UK Bass player, Ian Mellanby says he’s a big fan of Americana. “This is a nice space”, he says as he looks around. “I think that they gonna tear this building down, I heard. They don’t build buildings like this anymore.” Mellanby continues, “You could have a real nice art center, a farmers market in the car park and an antique market. It could be a center piece for the neighborhood.”
Two sets of artists with one goal
On this night musicians and filmmakers worked well together. The crew of five appears to be ambitious. Director Ian Brunell explains “We all know where we want to end up. We all want to be the head of our respective departments”. Brunell describes the working atmosphere: “Everyone is working together towards this common goal and this look of a movie. When everyone has that common goal in mind then you just end up with an awesome product.”
The band members are easily described as seasoned performers. The name of the band refers to the number of men that signed the declaration of Independence.
Joe Borrelli – Lead Vocals/Guitar and Song Writer and co-owner of the Chestnut Hill Gallery
Joe Desserau – Drummer
Ian Mellanby – Bass/Song Writer
Steve Butler – Producing/Guitars
Billy “Meech” Chase – Guitar
Temple University Crew
Ian Brunell – Director
Brett Graybill – Director of Photography
Ian Rose – Gaffer
Greg Fallon – Gaffer
Darragh Dadurand – Editor
The young crew gathered outside for a break, they talked about their experiences in the industry.
“In Philadelphia is so much going on in the film industry right now that it is a good time to break into the business” one of the crew members explains. “Right now it gets to the point where they grab kids from colleges and throw them on movie sets”
On the question of how much they work for free, the group laughs and replies simultaneously: “I do everything for free/ have not been payed yet/ some will do the job for just the credit.” Brunell explains that most jobs they take are for free, but he can look forward to his first paid gig in September when he shoots a documentary. Gaffer Greg Fallon tells that he does a lot of internships where the experience is considered the pay. “But, it would be nice, for once, to be not the only one on set who is not getting paid.”
On September 8, 2012, 56 Men will perform at the Northern Liberties Music Festival at 7pm, at the North Star Bar at 10pm the same day and at the Chestnut Hill Fall for the Arts festival on October 7, 2012.
Video Editor Darragh Dandurand expects to have the video edited in a couple of weeks.