Heroic Age Studios Brings Movie Making to Central Illinois

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The legacy of local movie maker lives on through set design


In 2009, Pekin resident Jim Conover released the independent western movie, The Showdown (originally titled Sand Prairie). The movie was shot in various locations across Tazewell County, IL, and with the help of Jim’s dedicated crew, an entire western town was constructed along the bank of the Mackinaw River. Nearly a decade later, the location is a surreal ghost town with the remains of skeletal buildings standing defiantly against the ravages of time and weather. However, thanks to Jim’s amazing generosity, the town of Sand Prairie will now live on as the building blocks for the sets of other Central Illinois movie projects.

Recently, Heroic Age Studios in Mt. Zion, IL launched a group of movies in which fans of a particular genre have the opportunity to interact with Heroic Age throughout the production of a series of full length, motion pictures, all of which are being filmed entirely in Central Illinois. The first of these genre series is Frightful 5000 Films, which are yearly movies dealing with psychological horror.  Also in the works for Fanatical 5000 Films is a community-based romance. With Mr. Conover’s donation of lumber from the proud remains of Sand Prairie, Heroic Age is moving forward with constructing sets for both of these projects.

“Jim Conover is an amazing man in every sense of the word. His love of movie making and his dedication to helping fellow filmmakers is an inspiration to us all.”

– Eric Hector, Creative Director Heroic Age Studios

On Saturday, February 25, volunteers from Millikin University and the Central Illinois Film Commission are donating their time to dismantle Mr. Conover’s set, collect the lumber, and transport it to the Heroic Age Art Center in Mt. Zion.

“We really want to thank all of our amazing volunteers. We are so grateful! It is great to see all of these creative people coming together to make these projects happen. ”

– Eric Hector, Creative Director Heroic Age Studios

Anyone wanting more information, or who may be interested in being involved in either Frightful 5000 Films or Fanatical 5000 Films, is encouraged to visit the websites at www.frightful5000films.com and/or www.fanatical5000films.com.  

Written by
Ash Hamilton is not only the owner of Horror-Fix.com, but also one of its major contributors. A long time horror movie enthusiast, Ash has lent his personality to radio and television and continues to support his favorite genre through his writing and art. He also loves beef jerky and puppies... and low-grade street-quality hallucinogens.

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