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Tri-County Vanguard story collection: Lighthouse movie filmed at Cape Forchu, Yarmouth County

PHOTO COURTESY OF DAN ROBICHAUD
The movie project that has been underway in Yarmouth for the past couple of months is drawing to a close. Soon we’ll be back to only one lighthouse at Cape Forchu.
PHOTO COURTESY OF DAN ROBICHAUD The movie project in Yarmouth during 2018. Contributed
YARMOUTH, N.S. —

When there were two lighthouses in Cape Forchu in 2018. PHOTO COURTESY OF BRENTEN MOULAISON
When there were two lighthouses in Cape Forchu in 2018. PHOTO COURTESY OF BRENTEN MOULAISON

THE LIGHTHOUSE FILM

In the spring of 2018, the Cape Forchu lighthouse property in Yarmouth County, N.S., along with a hanger at the Yarmouth Airport, was transformed into a movie set for the production of the film 'The Lighthouse.'

The movie stars Willem Dafoe and Robert Pattinson and was directed by Robert Eggers. 

It is set for release in 2019.

The following is collection of stories written by the Tri-County Vanguard newsroom about the filming of the movie during 2018 and the release of the movie in 2019.


March 2018: Lights camera action coming soon to cape Forchu Lighthouse and Yarmouth Airport

Set construction for the feature film The Lighthouse is underway on the Leif Ericson trail at the Cape Forchu lighthouse. The movie is about a lighthouse keeper in the early 20th century, starring actors Willem Dafoe and Robert Pattinson.

Set design for the feature film The Lighthouse, underway on the Leif Ericson trail at Cape Forchu, includes a 60-foot lighthouse designed to replicate those built in the early 20th century. ERVIN OLSEN PHOTO
Set design for the feature film The Lighthouse, underway on the Leif Ericson trail at Cape Forchu, includes a 60-foot lighthouse designed to replicate those built in the early 20th century. ERVIN OLSEN PHOTO


March 2018: Lighthouse film project a big economic boon for Yarmouth

Indirectly, almost every business in town would be receiving a slice of the big pie provided by the thriller movie being filmed in Yarmouth County, said an industry executive at the time. When asked what businesses they were working with locally, location manager ShaunClarke replied it would be easier to list the companies that they weren’t doing business with.


March 2018: Film company using Yarmouth Airport for production

A large hangar on Yarmouth airport property has been temporarily repurposed as a sound studio for a film company.

“When we were having conversations on potential tenants we never dreamed of renting the entire hangar space to a production company, but we’re certainly thankful for it,” said interim airport manager Alain Muise at the time.


A skeleton scaffolding built by Yarmouth County’s East Coast Scaffolding was at the tip of Cape Forchu’s Leif Ericson trail. CONTRIBUTED
A skeleton scaffolding built by Yarmouth County’s East Coast Scaffolding was at the tip of Cape Forchu’s Leif Ericson trail. CONTRIBUTED

March 2018: Scaffolding company's exposure rises to new heights with Yarmouth film project

A co-owner of East Coast Scaffolding remembers how he felt when approached to build a skeleton scaffold for The Lighthouse movie being filmed at Cape Forchu. 

“I was extremely excited,” said Dean Pearce, who owns the company with his father Vince. “This is exactly the type of scaffolding we enjoy and love to do.”

The skeleton they built will be used as the lighthouse once construction is complete. Covered with plywood, the structure will then be wrapped in a thin sheet that resembles brick facing. The scaffolding was to 44 feet high with another 18-20 feet added for the lantern, which is being made in Halifax and was described as “quite beautiful.”


April 2018: Is that a boat in the shot?

The set for The Lighthouse at Leif Erikson park at Cape Forchu is nearing completion and filming will soon begin. Although marine traffic was expected to be able to come and go unimpeded, curiosity seekers aboard private vessels were asked to stay away from Cape Forchu until the completion of filming.

The lightkeeper's house, whistle house and lighthouse at the The Lighthouse film site at Cape Forchu. ERVIN OLSEN PHOTO
The lightkeeper's house, whistle house and lighthouse at the The Lighthouse film site at Cape Forchu. ERVIN OLSEN PHOTO


April 2018: Public access to Cape Forchu restricted

As had been earlier indicated by those involved with a film project in Yarmouth, public access at the Cape Forchu property where the movie "The Lighthouse' is to be filmed was being restricted. Barricades were up with public access to the lighthouse property only expected to reopen around May 11.


April 2018: Stay calm Yarmouth: Star sightings may be in store

The town was all abuzz. Willem Dafoe and Robert Pattinson, blockbuster stars in The Lighthouse, now in production at Cape Forchu, would soon be here.

Or.... maybe they were aready here...

Somewhere.

Local businesses wondered in the spring of 2018 whether they'd be serving people associated with the film project, including its two biggest stars. CARLA ALLEN PHOTOS
Local businesses wondered in the spring of 2018 whether they'd be serving people associated with the film project, including its two biggest stars. CARLA ALLEN PHOTOS


April 2018: Hollywood Yarmouth: Cape Forchu webcam the most visited of 80 sites in the province

Since news about the filming of The Lighthouse at the Cape Forchu Lighthouse property was published by the Vanguard on Feb. 21, viewing traffic to the webcam on site had quadrupled.

Ralf Pickart, the founder of Nova Scotia Webcams, says the webcam is currently the most visited site of all his 80-plus cameras around the province. “There have been close to 100,000 page views since it (the film) has been made public, with 15,000 unique users,” he says.

The Cape Forchu webcam from Nova Scotia Webcams during the filming. FROM WEBSITE
The Cape Forchu webcam from Nova Scotia Webcams during the filming. FROM WEBSITE


April 2018: Beyond the barricade

Members of the Yarmouth Knitting Guild brought their binoculars with them for their visit to the Lloy home at Cape Forchu (overlooking the film site) for their monthly knitting session.
Members of the Yarmouth Knitting Guild brought their binoculars with them for their visit to the Lloy home at Cape Forchu (overlooking the film site) for their monthly knitting session.

Mysterious activity was taking place at the tip of the Leif Ericson trail at Cape Forchu lighthouse but it was hard to say exactly what’s happening. But some residents of Cape Forchu could get somewhat of a peak.

Milford Lloy, who lives in the last house on the left heading towards the lighthouse, says it’s been interesting, especially on the day an “old relic of a boat” was brought out to be filmed.

But he said it’s hard to tell what the film crew is doing most times.

“You can see them running back and forth between the two buildings, but you never know for sure what they’re doing. Sometimes you see a lady waving at the gulls and I think there’s a kid behind her feeding them but I’m not really sure what’s going on. It’s interesting to watch when you have time.”


 


April 2018: Movie interest high in Yarmouth and people in love with the 'new' lighthouse

IN THIS POSTING.....

SPOTTING THE STARS

Yarmouth resident Glenn Bourque was excited to briefly meet actor Willem Dafoe, who is in town filming The Lighthouse. PHOTO COURTESY GLENN BOURQUE
Yarmouth resident Glenn Bourque was excited to briefly meet actor Willem Dafoe, who is in town filming The Lighthouse. PHOTO COURTESY GLENN BOURQUE

Glenn Bourque’s Spidey senses were tingling. The Yarmouth resident was heading into Yarmouth Superstore to go shopping when he saw Willem Dafoe entering as well. Dafoe is in Yarmouth as part of the filming of the movie ‘The Lighthouse.’

“He was down to earth. He was very polite.”

Bourque is a big Spider-Man fan and Dafoe played Normal Osborn, a.k.a. The Green Goblin, in the 2002 film. On the off chance that he saw Dafoe while he was in Yarmouth, Bourque had his Spider-Man Blu-ray trilogy movie set in his car.

CAN'T THE LIGHTHOUSE STAY?

People loved the lighthouse used for the film production so much they wanted to see it stick around for a while after the filming wraps up for the opportunity to see it up close.

But that wouldn’t be happening.

 Two lighthouses at Cape Forchu during the filming of the movie The Lighthouse. The lighthouse on the left was constructed for the film and taken down with production was completed. TINA COMEAU PHOTO
Two lighthouses at Cape Forchu during the filming of the movie The Lighthouse. The lighthouse on the left was constructed for the film and taken down with production was completed. TINA COMEAU PHOTO


May 2018: Reclamation work underway on land used for film set at Cape Forchu

The film company that recently wrapped up filming of The Lighthouse on the Leif Ericson trail at the Cape Forchu site was busy returning the property to its former state.


The lens was first installed at the top of the lighthouse on the exterior set and mounted to a modern rotating base.
The lens was first installed at the top of the lighthouse on the exterior set and mounted to a modern rotating base.

October 2019: Building the enchantress – lens maker’s creation has important role in The Lighthouse film 

In one of the scenes in The Lighthouse movie Thomas Wake (portrayed by Willem Dafoe), declares to his new helper that he’s “damn near married to this here light.” 

The beacon at the top of the lighthouse possesses strange power in The Lighthouse movie.
The beacon at the top of the lighthouse possesses strange power in The Lighthouse movie.

He also informs the apprentice, Ephraim Winslow (played by actor Robert Pattinson), that the latter’s predecessor died after raving about sirens and some sort of “enchantment” in the tower’s light.

When Dan Spinella, owner of Artworks Florida Classic Fresnel Lenses, was contacted by Jay Van Hoy, one of the producers for the film, and Craig Lathrop with production design, about building the period lens for the movie, he was told they needed the element to be very detailed and accurate.

“They said, ‘It’s really going to be a character in the movie and it’s going to be a contention piece between the lightkeepers,’” said Spinella.


“It has to transport the audience,” he was told. 


May 2019: The Lighthouse movie filmed in Yarmouth County receiving rave reviews

The Lighthouse movie that was filmed in Yarmouth last year has been receiving great reviews by those who saw the movie when it premiered in Cannes. And the reviews are offering a glimpse of what people can expect when the movie eventually hits theatres.


October 2019: The wait is over

Tickets available now for The Lighthouse movie at Yarmouth Cineplex, starting Oct. 24

Tickets for the much-anticipated movie filmed on the craggy tip of Cape Forchu went on sale at the Yarmouth Cineplex for the first showing of the movie in Yarmouth on Oct. 24.

The Lighthouse, directed by Robert Eggers and starring Willem Dafoe and Robert Pattinson, is showing in Yarmouth on Oct. 24.
The Lighthouse, directed by Robert Eggers and starring Willem Dafoe and Robert Pattinson, is showing in Yarmouth on Oct. 24.


April 2019: A first glimpse of the film

Buzz and anticipation continues to build for The Lighthouse filmed in Yarmouth that will make its debut in Cannes 2019 Director's Fortnight lineup

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