News Column

'Skook' to show at New Orleans Film Festival

October 12, 2013


Oct. 12--This weekend, "Skook," the independent film set in Schuylkill County and New York City, is making its way to the New Orleans Film Festival.

"We finished editing the film and applied to a bunch of film festivals," Ashley S. Pishock, the script writer and star of the picture, formerly of Schuylkill Haven, said Friday. "We found out about two months ago we got into the New Orleans Film Festival.

The film will premier at 6 p.m. today at the festival.

According to newspaper archives, "Skook" is the tale of Amy, a 20-year-old student of fashion, played by Pishock, who returns home from school in New York for the holidays and discovers a new perspective on her hometown, herself and even the boy who tormented her in high school. Her schoolmates and family are played by many locals.

The 90-minute film takes place almost entirely in Schuylkill County. Many of the scenes were shot in and around the home of Pishock's mother, Mary, who had to spent the last grueling week of filming on vacation so the movie could take over her house.

The idea for the film came partly from Pischock's experiences, but also from the experiences of others, and it shows the commonalities in a uniquely Skook way.

Pishock, who was already in New Orleans for the 24th annual film festival that started Thursday and goes until Oct. 17, said that some people from the area were able to make it to the festival but she wishes more could have come.

"We're really excited about it," she said. "Everyone worked really hard. We basically went through a lot of edits and that took about a year."

Pishock said that "Skook" is in competition for the best narrative feature, along with six other films.

"I think we find out on Sunday if we win anything," she said. "There are over 200 films at the festival, a mix of feature and short films. I really hope we end up winning."

While the team is currently applying to other film festivals, Pishock wants to have a screening in Pennsylvania, but no details are available at this time.

She also said that they shot another film in the area this year called "The Living" that is now being edited.

"There were tons of people being extras," she said. "It was a really great place to shoot."

For more information about "Skook," visit the film's Facebook page at and for more information about the New Orleans Film Festival, visit


(c)2013 the Republican & Herald (Pottsville, Pa.)

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