Department of Tourism
"Elizabethtown" Generates Positive Buzz for Kentucky
FRANKFORT, Ky. – Elizabethtown, the Paramount Pictures feature film set and filmed mostly in Kentucky and released last Friday, generated positive comments for its Kentucky setting.
The story, a romantic comedy based loosely on writer-director Cameron Crowe’s return to Kentucky for his father’s funeral several years ago, is a life-affirming tale of a young man’s reacquaintance with his Kentucky relatives and a budding romance with a quirky flight attendant he meets on his trip back to his home town.
“Even after seeing the movie at a pre-release screening several weeks ago, I went to see it again opening weekend and found it to be a truly uplifting and well-told story of what life in Kentucky is like,” said Tourism Commissioner Randy Fiveash. “The beauty of Kentucky and the favorable portrayal of its people come through very clearly.”
“Elizabethtown, the pleasant hamlet that has provided Cameron Crowe with the title and the setting for his new film, lies in the lovely Commonwealth of Kentucky,” writes reviewer A.O. Scott in The New York Times.
“Elizabethtown is a noisy, complicated place full of intriguing characters and stories, and it allows Mr. Crowe to kick back with a large, loose ensemble of marvelous supporting actors,” Scott continues. “Elizabethtown is a long, lurching trip to nowhere in particular, but Elizabethtown is a place where you wouldn’t mind spending some more time, though perhaps under different circumstances.”
Courier-Journal critic Judith Egerton, an Elizabethtown native, writes, “But any fears that this Hollywood director would contribute to a stereotype of Kentuckians as barefoot, toothless hicks can be dismissed. Crowe's respect and affection for the people here come through, especially in the hubbub of Drew's relatives, who gather to fuss and nurture each other through the loss of a loved one.”
In a journal he kept during the filming of Elizabethtown in summer 2004, Crowe praises the people and the places he encountered while shooting on location in Kentucky.
“Walking the streets, entering the hotel and all over Kentucky, there would be no riots, no security problems, just a lot of supportive people who are glad we’re here.”
In another journal entry, Crowe writes, “Kentucky is infectious, and (Kirsten) Dunst finds the same thing that Orlando (Bloom) does – the city of Louisville is not quite the south, not quite the north, not quite a huge city and not quite a small town. It’s a young adult of a city, and you’ll feel its character in the movie. ‘I love it here,’ is what I’m hearing from everybody. That sure beats, ‘What’d you bring us all HERE for?’”
“’Are you coming back to this part of the country?’ someone asked me. The answer is yes. Starting in Kentucky was essential to this movie…Kentucky has treated us well, and we all fell in love. Everything that happens from here should grow from what happened here. Kentucky is the soul of the movie.”
“We’re thrilled to have had Elizabethtown filmed here and believe it will do a lot to bring people here to find out about what life is really like in the state,” Fiveash said.
With ticket sales of about $11 million, Elizabethtown finished third in the box office competition this weekend behind The Fog and Wallace & Gromit.
Dreamer: Inspired by a True Story, another film set and recently filmed largely in Kentucky, opens at theaters nationwide next weekend.