I first wrote about Chicago-based writer and director Daniel Nearing’s ambitious new film project Hogtown back in April 2012, and now we finally get to see our teasing first look at the film.
Currently deep in post-production, Nearing, who made the previously critically-acclaimed 2009 drama Chicago Heights, shot Hogtown in black and white with Herman Wilkins and Diandra Lyle playing the leads in a mutli-racial cast of more than 70.
The film is a experimental period drama set during the backdrop of the notorious 1919 Chicago race riots - a city which, as anyone familiar with it knows, has a long, bloody and painful history of racial tensions.
Nearing says that his film’s plot “relates to the investigation into the disappearance of a multi-millionaire theatre owner during a snowstorm. While it is on the one hand a murder mystery and a love story, it is intended as a celebration of the city while exploring the isolation and emotions of many of its inhabitants."
The film even incorporates several famous, or soon to be famous real people, including a 19 year-old, unpublished Ernest Hemingway; and though it is a period film, Nearing says that his film will be "period-less," shot in undisguised contemporary Chicago locations.
The film is scheduled for release in 2014, and several original gospel songs by Minister Raymond Dunlap, who did the soundtrack for Chicago Heights, have already been recorded; there's also a new full orchestral score for Hogtown, some of it can be heard in the trailer below: