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Continued: Anoka County couple releases family-friendly film

  • Article by: SHANNON PRATHER , Star Tribune
  • Last update: November 26, 2013 - 7:07 PM

“I always hope what I am communicating makes an impact,” Perkins said recently. “I was challenging people about the vision of the church. It was just icing on the cake to hear that God has used that event to get them going on this movie.”

Perkins and his family were some of the first to see the film. He said it is dramatic with both humorous and heartbreaking moments. “I walked away inspired,” he said.

The Petersons held casting calls at the Hampton Inn in Maple Grove. The 300-member cast and crew is mostly volunteer. A handful of high-level staff will receive some compensation if the film makes money.

Most of the movie was filmed last summer at a youth campsite on the Rum River. Some of it also was shot on location in Chicago.

“It was real intense — 12-hour days,” Scott Peterson said.

In the film, the main character, 13-year-old Jake, witnesses a robbery. Alarmed at the violence, Jake’s parents uproot the family from Chicago and buy a camp in Minnesota. Jake struggles with the move. The movie has strong spiritual themes, the couple said.

“You can fight against Him or your can go with His plan,” said Diane Peterson, explaining the Christian influence in the film.

The original budget was $20,000, but the couple realized they needed equipment, including a crane and a dolly on a track, to be able to shoot smoothly while in motion.

“We tried to build one ourselves. It didn’t work well. We had a skateboard and PVC pipe,” said Diane Peterson.

The couple did score big when they found a professional-grade used sound booth on Craigslist for $500. They moved it into their dining room to record some audio portions of the film.

The Petersons are releasing and promoting the film themselves mostly through word-of-mouth and social media. They are using, a web platform that lets consumers bring movies they want to local theaters, to get the film into theaters for one-time showings.

One of the biggest compliments they’ve received about the film came from Perkins’ children. Diane Peterson asked if they enjoyed the film and had watched it again. The child replied, “Like four times.”


Shannon Prather • 612-673-4804


To learn more about “The Current,” go to


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    Scott and Diane Peterson spent their own cash to make a movie. They surprised family and friends when it...

  • Diane and Scott Peterson — she’s an attorney and he’s a real estate agent — wanted to make a movie for families with an uplifting message. “The Current” was named a finalist for the Kairos Prize for Spiritually Uplifting Screenplays in late 2011.

  • B. Bradenton Harper, left, who plays Jake, and Blade Yocum, who plays Peter, got instructions from director Nikita Zubarev, foreground.

  • Zubarev and director of photography Ben Enke prepared for a scene.

  • William Studer, who plays the chaplain, and Harper rehearsed the baptism scene.

  • Scott and Diane Peterson, with a poster for their film, “The Current.” The movie has played in a handful of theaters in four states..

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