Students on the big screen

Movie filmed in North Platte's recent premier at the SXSW Film Festival

The+%22Frances+Ferguson%22+cast+at+the+SXSW+Film+Festival.+Photo+courtesy+of+Megan+Jerabek.
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Students on the big screen

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The "Frances Ferguson" cast at the SXSW Film Festival. Photo courtesy of Megan Jerabek.

The "Frances Ferguson" cast at the SXSW Film Festival. Photo courtesy of Megan Jerabek.

The "Frances Ferguson" cast at the SXSW Film Festival. Photo courtesy of Megan Jerabek.

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“Frances Ferguson”, a movie filmed in North Platte, cast several North Platte High School students into the production. Junior Megan Jerabek is one such lucky student.

The movie, “Frances Ferguson”, premiered March 10 at the South By Southwest Film Festival in Texas. The film is directed by Bob Byington and follows Frances, played by Kaley Wheless, through her afterlife in crime. “It is a weird movie, it’s unique, it’s not exactly what everyone expected it to be when they were casting in North Platte, Neb.,” said Jerabek.

The story takes place in North Platte and focuses on the small town’s reaction to a scandal. “A substitute teacher has an affair with a student,” said Jerabek.

Jerabek plays Carmen, a drug addict that features in the group therapy scenes alongside Wheless’ Frances. “My role kind of started out small,” Jerabek said, ”[but] it expanded with filming.”

Bob Byington has directed movies such as “7 Chinese Brothers” and “Somebody Up There Likes Me”. “He’s strict, because he knows what he wants,” Jerabek said, “he knows the picture he’s trying to create.”

Jerabek traveled to Austin, Texas for the SXSW premier alongside a majority of the cast. She thought it was weird having people laugh at her scenes in a theater. “Then afterwards you have people coming up asking for pictures like you’re famous,” she said, “I think [photographers] assume since you’re in the film that you’re a professional,” Jerabek said, “and they interview you and it’s like ‘Hi I’m in high school, I live in North Platte, Neb.’”

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