If things look familiar to you in the new movie, “Different Flowers” due to be released September 29th, it’s because the entire movie was shot here in Kansas City! The movie stars Emma Bell, Hope Lauren, and Emmy award winner, Shelley Long, and if you look closely, you’ll see a scene shot in a grocery store, and that store is none other than McGonigle’s Market! General Manager, Chris Doering sat down with the writer, director, and hometown hero, Morgan Dameron to learn more.
A Childhood Dream Come True
Writer, director, Morgan Dameron, who grew up here in KC, wanted to film the entire movie in Kansas City. “Since I was a little girl, it has been my dream to make a film in Kansas City. Growing up here, I always thought of Kansas City as special. There’s an inherent kindness to the city that rubs off on you. People often say Kansas and Missouri are “flyover” states, but I take great pride in my hometown.” Dameron shared. “So, when I set out to make my first feature film, I knew there was no place I’d rather be. The supportive community, the gorgeous surrounding farmland, and the crazy amount of untapped talent made it an obvious choice.”
Why McGonigle’s Market?
When asked how she picked McGonigle’s Market as one of the locations, Dameron said, “We were looking for a store with a lot of unique character, because the conversation that takes place is so silly and fun, and McGonigle’s really knocked it out of the park. Crew members on the day kept picking out items that they wanted to purchase when the store opened! It was also an excellent excuse to have McGonigle’s barbecue sandwiches for lunch.”
Quiet on the Set!
Once we got all of the noisy compressors to turn off for filming, all went smoothly. The cast and crew enjoyed the quaint and quirky items in our store. “We had a spectacular time, and you can see it reflected in the scene on camera.” Dameron revealed. “Our production designer and art director had a blast using unique items from the store in their set decoration, such as a giant mounted fish, and fun little knick knacks for Ford’s cashier station. We were even able to use some unique McGonigle’s products, which is like a little Easter egg in the film, for frequent customers.”
A Plethora of Local Places
Filmgoers will feel right at home as the movie takes them to plenty of familiar places around Kansas City. When asked how many places the movie included, Dameron enlightened us, “The entire film takes place and was filmed in Kansas City, so quite a few! We really took advantage of all the city had to offer. Some of my favorite locations were the iconic downtown skyline and I-35, Country Club Christian Church on Ward Parkway, Main Street in Weston, Pembroke Hill School (of which I’m an alumna), Leed’s Diner which played the part of Dolly’s Diner, and, of course, McGonigle’s.”
Hometown Connections Galore
“Almost every single member of our crew had some kind of Midwestern connection. We flew in our main cast from Los Angeles, as well as many of our department heads, but almost everyone had family here or some kind of connection to the surrounding area. Though they now live in Los Angeles, our cinematographer was raised in Overland Park, our camera operator was raised in Manhattan, KS.” She added, “Even Shelley Long, for example, was born in Indiana. We also got extraordinarily lucky with our KC crew. We had some outstanding crewmembers who make their living in Kansas City, such as Heidi Seager-Bowles, who was our hair, makeup, and wardrobe department head. She is positively brilliant.
A Movie about Sisters
We asked Dameron to tell us a little bit about the plot. Here’s what she said, “Different Flowers is a road trip comedy. When Millie, a sensible bride-to-be, bolts moments before her big Midwestern wedding with the help of her free-spirited younger sister, Emma, she embarks on a life-changing journey neither of them expected.” We hear there is a twist at the end too. Here’s a sneak peek:
“Different Flowers” Is a Feel Good Must-See
When wrapping up the interview, Doering asked Dameron, “I understand that this film marks your debut as both a writer and director. I also remember you saying something about, ‘there is too much darkness in the world these days….and that you wanted to bring some light into it.’ Is this going to be a continuous theme in your films? Dameron responded, “Yes, this is my first feature film, and I purposefully wanted to write something that will put a smile on your face. It’s a love letter to my sisters, and to the town and community we grew up in. I hope that me following my dreams can encourage others to follow theirs.”
Sounds like a great film that will leave you feeling warm and fuzzy inside. Get out there and see it and let us know what you think about it! Find “Different Flowers” at a theater near you.