NORTH PLATTE, Neb. — Filming will begin next spring on a movie about Annie Cook, one of Lincoln County's most notorious residents.
Co-producer Jon Robinson had hoped filming could start this fall, but on Wednesday he said that waiting was a better business decision.
“There's an investment group buying into the production company, and it's a very complicated process,” Robinson said. “We're just about done, but it's leaving us with too little time to do a good job on the movie, which is our top priority.”
He believes waiting will pay off in the long run.
“It's somewhat to our regret, but we can make a better movie by doing it,” Robinson said. “There isn't much of a downside to this other than some possible complications with landscapes and the weather. We will have to simulate fall in the spring.”
The movie is set in 1939. It's based on “Evil Obsession: The Annie Cook Story,” by Nellie Snyder Yost, about a woman who managed a poor farm near Hershey, Neb. Cook was notorious for prostitution, slavery, bootlegging and murder and was one of the key people whose actions led to North Platte becoming one of a number of cities that were referred to as “Little Chicago.”
Robinson said casting could begin this fall, and preproduction could commence this winter. A title for the movie has not been announced. Filming locations are close to being finalized.
“We are still looking for late 1930s automobiles,” Robinson said. “We're kind of short on those. They were the cars that had a hard life during World War II and are harder to find.”
He has located a 1937 Packard and a 1939 Buick Limited, the latter of which will be driven by one of the villains in the movie. Robinson's own 1936 Chrysler Airstream 6 will also make an appearance in the film. It will be driven by the character Sam Diedrichs, former Lincoln County attorney.
“We've gotten permission to film in Sam Diedrichs' actual house,” Robinson said. “The tenant who lives there now is agreeable to it, and the owner in Minnesota is agreeable to it.”