Boone director debuts newest film, ‘The List’
By Scott Nicholson
The latest project of a Boone-based movie producer and director is getting the red-carpet treatment in Charlotte next week.
Gary Wheeler’s “The List,” based on Robert Whitlow’s best-selling novel, was filmed on location in Wilmington and features a spiritual story line and some notable actors. The cast includes Malcolm McDowell (“A Clockwork Orange,” “Cat People,” NBC’s “Heroes”), Churck Carrington (“JAG”), Hilarie Burton (“One Tree Hill”), Pat Hingle (“Gunsmoke,” “Batman”) Will Patton (“Remember The Titans,” “Armegeddon”) and Tim Ware (“Bobby Jones: Stroke of Genius,” “Monster”). Wheeler’s production company is Level Path Productions.
The plot synopsis, as described at the Internet Movie Database (imdb.com), reads: “A sudden death tied to a list from the past leads to unimaginable evil. Fresh out of law school and full of hope for the future, Renny Jacobson is stunned by his father’s sudden death—and then by the terms of the will: the elder Jacobson has left the bulk of his estate to charity. For his only son, he has left nothing more than the contents of a deposit box and interest in a company of which no one has ever heard—the Covenant List of South Carolina, Ltd.
From left, Appalachian State University alumnus and director Gary Wheeler speaks with actor Malcom McDowell during filming of “The List.” Photo submitted
“When Renny encounters lovely Jo Johnston, meets the members of ‘The List,’ and discovers the staggering value of his father’s mysterious bequest, his hope is resurrected. But why is Jo, to whom he is deeply attracted, so reluctant for him to claim his rightful share? Renny feels the supernatural power of the 140-year-old covenant—feels it and wants it for himself. But when his life and Jo’s begin to unravel, he is forced to face the truth about The List. And nothing short of a miracle will save them from its grasp.”
Wheeler is a multi-award-winning filmmaker who has produced a number of movie and television projects around the world.
One of his recent projects is “Final Solution,” a theatrical release shot in South Africa and starring Tony Award winner John Kani (“The Ghost and the Darkness”). He also filmed the Christmas special “Midnight Clear” starring Stephen Baldwin. He frequently lectures on filmmaking at various universities and conferences such as the University of Mary, WYSIWYG Film Festival – San Francisco, Regent University, the International Christian Visual Media Conference, Northwestern University, University of North Carolina-Wilmington and Appalachian State University, where he graduated.
Whitlow, a Charlotte author, has sold more than 400,000 copies of his legal thrillers. He won the Christy Award for Contemporary Fiction and worked as an attorney for 27 years. He served as co-screenwriter and executive producer for the film version of his novel.
“’The List’ is a faithful adaptation of my novel,” Whitlow said in a statement. “Gary Wheeler has created an artistically excellent film about the power of prayer that will have enduring influence.”
Tom Preistley (“The Thomas Crown Affair”) served as cinematographer for the film. Media screenings and premiere will be held in Charlotte on Aug. 1 and Aug. 2. The first public showing of the movie will be at The Ballantyne Village Theatre on Aug. 10.
More information on the movie, as well as the theatrical trailer, can be found online at www.TheList-TheMovie.com.