Local video preview before upload

Belfast premieres its ‘Happy’

Jun 06, 2014
Some of Belfast’s many poets get “Happy” at Left Bank Books. From left are Ellen Sander, Betsy Headley, Toussaint St. Negritude and Elizabeth Garber.

Belfast — The “Belfast Maine: We are Happy” video has been edited and will premiere Friday afternoon, June 13, at the downtown Colonial Theatre; and that night on BCTV Channel 2. It will be broadcast periodically through the weekend, then uploaded to YouTube Monday, June 16, to join the thousands of videos worldwide set to Pharrell Williams’ Oscar-nominated “Happy.”

Work on the Belfast video began in March with support from Our Town Belfast, the Main Street organization and dozens of underwriters rushing to support the filming. Production began in April with a team comprised of Insight Productions and Bel TV’s filmmaker extraordinaire Ned Lightner; production and location scheduler Kathy Coleman; director and producer Mike Hurley; and all-around production and administrative teammate and lead go-go dancer Mary Jean Crowe.

The scheduling of nearly 100 location shoots turned into a major undertaking. More than 60 hours of filming, good/bad weather and an uncountable cast of hundreds coalesced around the goal of showing off the city. An effort was made to involve lots of different people from all walks of life and show Belfast and everyone being really “Happy,” from the highways and backwoods to every corner of town. The last footage was put in the can June 1, and it took Lightner some 15 hours to edit the 60 hours of footage to fit the 4:14 song.

“Ned has been busy and the film is ready for prime time,” said Hurley in announcing the premiere.

Three films will be screened between 3:30 and 5 p.m. at the Colonial, 163 High St.: the to-be-uploaded video; a 30-minute “long” version (Williams has a 24-hour version online); and a 28-minute “somewhere in Waldo County” version. The screenings are free, and as many people as possible will be seated at the theater. The production team will introduce the screenings and do a Q&A afterward.

Hurley said the “thank you” list is too gargantuan to begin to undertake but that many, many people sacrificed, helped, made allowances, were good-natured and helped make the video possible.

“We could not have done it without so many people who when asked to help simply said YES. Thank you. We believe the video will stand the test of time showing all of us and our city proud and ‘Happy,’” he said.

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Staff Profile

Dagney C. Ernest
A&E editor for Courier Publications, LLC
(207) 594-4401/4407, ext. 115
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Dagney has been providing Courier coverage of the local arts scene since 1985 and has helmed the multi-paper A&E section since it debuted in 2003. She has been a local performing artist, community and professional, for almost 30 years and spent a decade writing, producing and announcing on-air for several Midcoast radio stations. When not in the NewsNest, Dagney likes to be in motion.

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