A Penticton-based film topped the local box office, beating the big names in Hollywood by being Penticton’s highest-grossing film in its first two weeks.
Drinkwater was extended for a fourth week in Penticton and a second week in theaters in Toronto and Vancouver.
“It’s funny when you get the idea to make a movie within a movie, your worst fear is that nobody will see it or they won’t like it,” producer Graham Fraser said.
Fraser is the founder and president of Suitcase Charlie Films, “Drinkwater” being the first feature film. Other film projects are in the works, including “Road to Valor”, the story of World War II cycling hero Gino Bartali.
“Almost all reviews [of Drinkwater] was really good. The audience response has been great and what’s interesting is that we found it to be universal for all ages.
The coming-of-age comedy stars Eric McCormack of Will & Grace fame, telling the story of a teenager with a dysfunctional father who finds his way to small-town Canada.
Fraser said he felt the film resonated with people because of its heartwarming feel, which he says is needed after the final years of the pandemic.
“We’re showing it in Canada, and I think ‘Canadiana’ has really been talked about.”
Local viewers enjoyed scouting out all the Penticton sights and venues, like Munson Mountain, the South Okanagan Events Center and even the IGA.
It’s a departure from the norm to see BC play shamelessly, rather than a plateau for American films.
“We wanted Penticton to be a character in the movie,” Fraser said. “It was great to see the audience reacting the way we hoped.”
Fraser and his team are also working to put the film on a streaming platform.
“Hopefully by the end of this week we bet on our streaming deal, which we put it on, and then the rest of the world can see it. We just want the world to see it. That’s what it’s all about,” Fraser added.
“I think those who haven’t seen it really need to see it in the cinema. It’s definitely a better experience in a movie theater, as it always is. Seeing the sights of Penticton on screen in your own town is pretty special.”
Drinkwater has drawn crowds over the past two weeks, bringing in almost $20,000 in ticket sales to Penticton, more than Hollywood blockbusters Black Adam and Halloween Ends.
Upcoming session times for Drinkwater are available online here.