Taylor Purdee film in COVID comeback – Times News Online


Call it the comeback of “Killian & the Comeback Kids”.

Blame or credit COVID-19.

As with many events and projects, be it concerts, plays, and motion pictures, the 18-month shutdown of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has left a hole in the plans. best-developed arts and entertainment professionals.

However, COVID provided a second theatrical release opportunity for “Killian & the Comeback Kids,” a feature film based and shot in Lehigh Valley.

“When it came out last year in September, everyone thought the cities were about to reopen. It worked until the Regal channel closed. In November [2020], there was a second wave of movie theater closures, ”says Taylor A. Purdee, writer and director of“ Killian & the Comeback Kids, ”in which he plays the title role as a guitarist-songwriter. interpreter.

Purdee, who grew up in Williams Township, Northampton County, is a graduate of Lehigh Valley Charter High School for the Arts.

“Killian & the Comeback Kids,” initially released on September 18, 2020, was one of the first new releases, one of the only independent films, and in some cities, the only film released exclusively in theaters during the pandemic.

To take advantage of the reopening of theaters, Hope Runs High, the film’s distributor, released “Comeback Kids” on September 17, 2021 in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Washington, DC, and the Lehigh Valley, the latter at AMC Center Valley 16 at The Promenade in Saucon Valley.

“He stays in some theaters. But we are adding more in the south, in the Carolinas, ”Purdee explains in a telephone interview.

Purdee appeared at the film’s September openings in New York City and Los Angeles for question-and-answer sessions and to sing and perform songs from the film. Purdee hosted a question-and-answer session on September 22 for students at Lehigh Valley Charter High School for the Arts, in Bethlehem.

The film is expected to run in theaters through early November and in virtual theaters, home theater platforms and video on demand late November.

In “Killian & the Comeback Kids,” Purdee plays Killian Raison, a college graduate who returns to his hometown after a concert tour is canceled. He forms a group with his friends to perform at the annual music festival. The film was shot in the communities of Easton, Bethlehem and Lehigh Valley.

“Killian & the Comeback Kids” has a favorable rating of 7.7 out of 10 on the Internet Movie Database. According to a Chicago Sun-Times review: “It’s a cool movie with great music and great cinematography.”

The film features Nathan Purdee (Mr. Reason), Kassie Wesley DePaiva (Ms. Reason), John Donchak (Sam Amico), Shannon O’Boyle (Rose), Emily Mest (Melanie), Andrew O’Shanick (Josh) and Liam Higgins (Ben). Lee Grant does the voice of Mrs. Hunter.

The soundtrack contains original songs from The Cumberland Kids.

Purdee is the son of actor Nathan Purdee and documentary filmmaker Roberta Morris Purdee.

After Lehigh Valley Charter High School for the Arts, Taylor Purdee attended Fordham University.

When the COVID-19 outbreak closed theaters in December 2020, the film’s distributor, Hope Runs High, had to decide whether or not to release it digitally.

“At this point, we had to decide if it was going to go live,” says Purdee, a producer of the film.

“It could really benefit from the cities platform that these cultural centers have. The vending machine behind us kind of froze everything in the theaters.

“We all looked at all the statistics, knowing the vaccine was being rolled out, and we figured people would be ready to go back to theaters. So we were watching September [2021].

“The agreements with AMC and Regal, these were in place before COVID. What COVID did was a two-year segmented version.

“This distributor [Hope Runs High] does a lot of documentaries. There was a learning curve. By spreading out what is allowed to be a first-run movie, it gives it a lot more leeway.

“He was Oscar eligible last year, but we weren’t nominated. He will be eligible for the Golden Globes and the Grammys. “

The plot of “Killian & the Comeback Kids” is about Killian and the goal he and his band, The Comeback Kids, have to perform at Fest, a major annual music festival in Bethlehem. It’s a nod to Musikfest, which in the film features the rebirth of the old steel town.

“I would love to make the film a Musikfest tradition,” Purdee says. “I would love to get some members of the band together to play Musikfest.”

The Cumberland Kids is Taylor, guitar-voice; Liam Higgins, bass, mandolin, and Carly Jordan, vocals.

The “Killian & the Comeback Kids” soundtrack is available on digital platforms, with two additional releases (the instrumental score and the deluxe soundtrack with bonus tracks) slated for release after the film’s digital launch.

“Liam [Higgins] and I started recording together when I started writing the script for ‘Killian’, ”Purdee says.

“When the movie went into production it took a lot of music and energy from the band.

“He is [Higgins] came up with the idea of ​​a great concept album to take the first forty songs that we wrote and work it out with our knowledge now. It’ll be called “Every Song Counts”. It will include some of the songs from the movie, as well as some new songs.

Higgins was a neighbor of Purdee in Williams Township.

“The only music we agreed on was ‘Weird Al’ [Yankovic]. And then we both agreed on Josh Ritter. The Cumberland Kids refers to one of Ritter’s songs. It was either a football team or a group, ”Purdee explains.

PHOTO CONTRIBUTED BY GABE BOUCHER Taylor Purdee (Killian Raison), “Killian & the Comeback Kids”

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