"Without A Word - Official Press Release March 9, 2001."
W.A.W. Productions in association with Minds Eye Pictures presents
"Without A Word"
FEATURE FILM TO BEGIN PRODUCTION
(WINNIPEG, MB) W.A.W. Productions in association with Minds Eye Pictures is pleased to announce the start of
production on the feature-length film Without A Word. Principal photography begins in Winnipeg on Monday, March 12,
and is scheduled to wrap on April 26.
Realizing a longtime goal, Patrick Swayze and his wife Lisa Niemi will star and dance together in Without A Word, a
drama based on the original award-winning play they co-wrote and starred in. Niemi, who wrote the film's screenplay,
will make her feature directorial debut, with Swayze producing. Also starring multi-disciplinary artist/director/producer
George de la Pena (Red Hot, Kuffs, Chronicle of a Death Foretold), and featuring Matthew Walker (Intimate Relations, Misbegotten),
Without A Word is the story of three former dancers given one last chance to discover a dream they lost, and face their demons
to dance again.
When a world-renowned dance company, Dance Motives, loses its brilliant artistic director, Alex McGrath (Walker), to a massive
stroke, it threatens the company's very survival. The thought of recreating McGrath's finest work, Without A Word, abandoned
seven years earlier and never performed, is the only thing that offers Dance Motives hope for its future. Battling time,
mixed emotions, and haunting memories, the three original dancers are called upon to unite for the sake of the company.
But Max (de la Pena), Chrissa (Niemi), and Travis (Swayze) quickly discover Without A Word is something they must ultimately
do for themselves.
Niemi and Swayze said of the project, "Without A Word started as a play that was born from a magical place. The material and
the dance within has a huge emotional impact that moves from achingly romantic to intensely sensual. It has been a labor of
love from stage to screen."
Niemi and Swayze have been heavily immersed in dance rehearsals and preparing for their film roles since arriving in Winnipeg
in later January. Along the way, they've been working with acclaimed choreographers Doug Varone, Alonzo King, and Dwight
Rhoden to create the film's many dance sequences. Additional cast includes Timothy Webber (Bethune, Matinee), Marie Stillin
(Valentine, Kitchen Party), and local Winnipeg actress Aundra Ford playing the role of Chrissa's daughter, Bree. The film's
list of world-renowned dancers include Rasta Thomas, Kathryn Bradney, Igor Piovano, Bambi Swayze, Jamie Bishton, Desmond
Richardson, Stephanie Slater, Heather Thompson, Tai Jimenez, and Royal Winnipeg Ballet's Yosuke Mino.
Executive produced by Kevin DeWalt of Minds Eye Pictures (headquartered in Regina, SK, with offices in Vancouver, Edmonton
and Los Angeles), Without A Word marks the first feature film Minds Eye brings to Winnipeg. According to DeWalt, it won't
be the last. "Winnipeg has proven to be a wonderful place to film this movie, with the world-class Royal Winnipeg Ballet
being right here, and a variety of great shooting locations to pick from. The city has been very cooperative in helping
us along, and we're happy for the opportunity to make a movie here," says DeWalt. "An added incentive to shooting here
is also the opportunity to utilize the Manitoba Film and Video Tax Credit, and the Canadian Film or Video Services Tax Credit."
Minds Eye Pictures is a fully integrated production, post-production and distribution entity with offices in Canada and
the U.S. Over the last 15 years the company has produced over 500 hours of programming that is presently seen in more than
350 million households worldwide. Its award-winning feature films, television series, and documentaries have been translated
into a dozen languages, and sold in more than 100 countries. The company's web site is www.mindseyepictures.com.
Becoming well-known for its wide-range of diverse locations, Winnipeg is doubling as New York City for Without A Word,
with filming taking place in various locations throughout the city for the next seven weeks. In the end, with the majority
of crew being from Winnipeg, and many of the cast and dancers also coming from the city, Without A Word will likely mean as
much to Winnipeggers as it does to Niemi, Swayze and DeWalt.