Local Filmmaker Making a Difference
A local filmmaker is teaming up with Menasha police to crack down on what they say is a problem. Video by nbc26.comvideo
TOWN OF MENASHA-- A local filmmaker is teaming up with Menasha police to crack down on what they say is a problem.
The film is targeting teens and its all part of the town's "When Good Drugs Gone Bad Program."
The program started in Menasha in 2009 and police say it's already helped to lower prescription drug abuse rates among teens. But drug abuse remains an epidemic and prescription pills are often the gateway to harder opiates like heroin, a drug sweeping through northeast Wisconsin.
The film will be 15-year-old Michaela Bonfigt's first movie. She excited for a chance to be seen by thousands of high school students. "It’s cool that I’m in a film that has such meaning behind it and I might be helping kids that I don't even know,” Bonfigt said.
Filmmaker Ron Haese Sheboygan began making movies for schools more than a decade ago, after a close friend died in a drunken driving accident.
"I decided to take the films that I was doing and make it more an awareness film, I try to stay from the Hollywood form, as far as what this is what Hollywood does, I want to show what reality really happens,” Haese said.
Haese spent months talking with teens and police while researching for the film.
Menasha police say pill abuse among teenagers is down 14% due to efforts like drug take back programs and increased community awareness. But there's still more to do.
"Unfortunately it is pushing a lot of people to heroin and that is what is leading to a lot of the increase and the overdose there,” said Haese.
Haese has already made 16 drunken driving films for area schools. He's also done movies on bullying and domestic violence. The team hopes to begin filming in February, with a premiere date sometime in the fall of 2013.