Independent movie filmed in the area to open locally in April


BirderBy Ron Giofu


Bird-watching has been a popular hobby in the Windsor-Essex County for years and now a film with that as a theme has been filmed in the region and is scheduled to open next month.

“The Birder,” a comedy starring Tom Cavanagh, Mark Rendall, Graham Greene and Fred Willard, was filmed in 2012 in the Windsor-Essex County area with some of the locations in Amherstburg or very close by. Amherstburg resident Serge Forte, an associate producer for the movie, believes having such movies shot in the area could be good for the local economy.

“This industry has now come to Windsor-Essex County,” said Forte. “The movie was filmed all in Essex County and Windsor in the summer of 2012. It took about six weeks. It’s a very professional crew.”

Forte said the two writers of “The Birder” – Theodore Bezaire & Mike Stasko – are both University of Windsor graduates with Bezaire also being the movie’s director. Amherstburg’s Roy Collavino is another producer on the movie.

The movie is a “revenge comedy,” said Forte, that is rated PG-14. He said he is in talks with area school boards about having it screened there with public screenings in early April. A red carpet opening occurs at the Capitol Theatre in Windsor April 3 with it opening for a two-week engagement at Lakeshore Cinemas starting April 4.

It is also slated to be shown nationally, Forte added, with a possibility of international release.

“It’s a clean movie,” he said. “High school students can see it.”

Forte, who can also be seen in the movie, said there is a chance the movie makers could make another film in this region. He believes bringing filmmakers to this area can only mean good things.

“It’s a great thing for Essex County,” Forte believed. “We get to push our own neck-of-the-woods. Why should the other cities get all the tax benefits.”

The budget for “The Birder” was just under $1 million, said Forte, and he said it “was a thrill” to be a part of. He said tickets to see the film at Lakeshore Cinemas cost $10.

For more information on “The Birder,” visit, or

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