Filmmaker Turns Hans Ostrom Novel Into Romantic Thriller

October 10, 2011

Three to Get Ready
becomes the movie Napa, starring Rose McGowan

TACOMA, Wash. – Three to Get Ready, a mystery novel by University of Puget Sound Professor of English Hans Ostrom, is being made into a Hollywood film in California’s wine country.

Napa, the directorial debut of longtime screenwriter and producer Michael Kerr, follows in the steps of the hit comedy-drama Sideways and the darkly funny and original Fargo. Billed as a romantic thriller, it stars Rose McGowan, alongside Kevin Pollack and Sean Astin.  McGowan co-starred in Conan the Barbarian (2011) and recently completed The Pastor's Wife, where she portrays Mary Winkler, a real-life preacher's wife who murdered her husband. McGowan is also known for her roles in the television series Charmed and the horror film Grindhouse.

Napa is set to be filmed in the cities of Napa and Los Angeles later this month. The story centers on Scarlett Harding (played by McGowan), who gets a job as sheriff in her hometown of Napa, after returning from three military tours in Afghanistan.

Kerr has teamed up with top Hollywood cinematographer Philip Holahan, whose work includes the television series ER and The West Wing. The film script for Napa was written by Kerr and Ostrom. Ostrom will also make a cameo appearance as a Napa bartender.

“Michael [Kerr] and I met at the Squaw Valley Screenwriting Workshop in the mid-1990s,” said Ostrom. “We worked with screenwriter Tom Rickman, who was nominated for an Academy Award for Coal Miner’s Daughter. Michael and I have been working on film projects since then, and he had the idea to shift the setting of Three to Get Ready from the High Sierra to Napa.”

Michael Kerr is an accomplished filmmaker and has previously directed plays, documentaries, and television shows, including The Mens’ Room, which was nominated for an Emmy Award. He is the son of former actor John Kerr, who starred in Tea and Sympathy and other films. Award-winning Lackawanna Blues producer Nellie Nugiel is co-producing Napa, alongside Kerr.

Hans Ostrom, who was raised in the High Sierra country northeast of Napa Valley, is the author of the novels Three to Get Ready (1991) and Honoring Juanita (2010), as well as The Coast Starlight: Collected Poems 1976–2006. He wrote A Langston Hughes Encyclopedia and was editor, with J. David Macey, of The Greenwood Encyclopedia of African American Literature. He is at work now on a historical screenplay about the mysterious and intriguing life of a famous European philosopher.

“It has some of the flavor of Dangerous Liaisons and A Beautiful Mind,” Ostrom said of the new project.

Ostrom has been publishing poetry and short fiction in British and American magazines since the late 1970s. He teaches creative writing, rhetoric, and African-American literature at Puget Sound and is a member of the PEN/American Center.

Film Bridge International has distributed and financed a dozen films, including Winnie, the love story of Nelson and Winnie Mandela, starring Academy Award winner Jennifer Hudson and Academy Award nominee Terrence Howard. 

Photos of Hans Ostrom and the Three to Get Ready book cover are available upon request.

Photos on page: Top right, Three to Get Ready, by Hans Ostrom; Top left: Rose McGowan; Bottom right: Hans Ostrom, photo by Ross Mulhausen

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