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A feature comedy about a newspaper editor trying to save his hometown paper. Join our campaign to bring the beautiful town of Midland to the big screen!
Markham Street Films
Toronto, Ontario
6 Team Members


We have completed filming BIG NEWS in Midland and have hit the edit suite! From the director, producers and the rest of the production team, we'd like to thank our amazing crew, volunteers and everyone in Midland for all of your contributions and help! 

Director Daniel Perlmutter and Crew enjoying their "Samy Specials" from Grounded Coffee Co. on our last night of shooting. 

For those of you with perks to come,

we'll keep you posted on when Big News will head to festivals, have previews and be released.

Screening dates to be announced! 


We have big news from BIG NEWS! From the director, producers and the rest of the production team, we are thrilled to announce that Aaron Ashmore - of "Smallville" and "Warehouse 13" fame - will be joining the cast of BIG NEWS FROM GRAND ROCK. We can't wait to work with him!


It’s a sweet, old-fashioned feature comedy from writer/director Daniel Perlmutter that harkens back to the screwball comedies of the '30s and '40s but tells a very contemporary story. 

Writer/Director Daniel Perlmutter and actor Meredith MacNeill discuss the upcoming feature comedy Big News From Grand Rock.

"Big News From Grand Rock" tells the story of Leonard Crane, the editor of The Grand Rock Weekly Ledger, a small town newspaper that’s on the brink of bankruptcy. Desperate to save his paper, Leonard takes a drastic step: he starts making up stories, passing off the plots of old movies as local news. But things go from bad to worse when one of his stories attracts the attention of a big city reporter.

We plan to start filming at the end of September. Then we edit the film for four months. Then we get it out to film festivals! Then, before the theatrical release, we’ll have some exclusive preview screenings. You can come! Have a look at the perks to see how.


Ennis Esmer (Leonard Crane):

Ennis is currently shooting his fourth season as Oz Bey in the hit original series “The Listener”. Other TV and film credits include “The LA Complex”, “Sex After Kids”, “Dirty Singles” and “YPF”, which earned him a Canadian Comedy Award nomination. Ennis also recently returned to the stage in the lead role of Ralph in “Claire From The Bus”, a new play written by Kjartan Hewitt and performed in Toronto. He has trained at Toronto's Second City and York University.

Meredith MacNeill (Lucy Becket):

Meredith’s recent TV and film projects include "This Hour Has 22 Minutes", "Man Stroke Woman" (created by Ash Attala, producer of "The Office", starring alongside Nick Frost), "Peep Show", "My Family and other Animals", the British Comedy hit film "Confetti" (cast includes Martin Freeman), "Frequently Asked Questions about Time Travel", opposite Anna Faris (HBO), and "Festival".

Highlights from Meredith’s theatre work in London, UK include her graduation from the three-year acting program at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. She has also performed with The Royal Shakespeare Company, Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre, Theatre de Complicite, Royal National Theatre, The Arcola, Bush Theatre and Script Work with The Donmar, The Royal Court and The Young Vic.

Also joining the cast is Canadian legend Gordon Pinsent.

And comedy star Peter Keleghan.


Daniel, the cast and producers are excited and committed to making a great, funny film. But in order for it to reach its full potential, we need your help.

To capture the rhythms and joys of small town life, it’s important to shoot on the streets of a real, small town, and we think Midland, Ontario is perfect. But filming outside of Toronto costs money, and that’s why we’ve come to you.

The money raised will be put back into the local community – paying for housing, hiring local talent and using local services.

By contributing to our Indiegogo campaign, you’ll help us bring our production to the streets of Midland and be part of the first feature film ever shot there. 


For the past several years I have been visiting your region and have fallen in love with the area. As I worked on the script for Big News From Grand Rock, I wrote it with Midland in mind. The natural beauty of the area paired with the charm of the people of Midland make for a very cinematic setting. I hope that you will be as excited about our production as we are. For those in the area who are unable to contribute financially but want to be involved in other ways, we need your help too. Please be in touch at bignews@markhamstreet.com. I look forward to working with your community to bring Midland and Simcoe County to the big screen. 

If we reach $75,000 – everyone at or above the $125 mark will receive a copy of the Grand Rock Weekly Ledger that appears in the film.

If we reach $100,000 – everyone at or above the $125 mark will receive a hard copy of the production e-book.

"Big News From Grand Rock" is my first feature length film as a director and it’s been a labour of love for several years now. I started work on the script in 2008, the following year I pitched it as part of the Toronto International Film Festival’s "Pitch This" competition. I won that competition and was able to get the film set up with Markham Street Films. The project was then accepted into the CFC Comedy Boot Camp at Just For Laughs and the Telefilm Canada Features Comedy Lab. Through the Comedy Lab we were able to get feedback on the script from a lot of great people, including Kirsten Smith (the writer of "Legally Blonde") Dan Goldberg (the producer of "The Hangover" movies), David Frankel (the director of "The Devil Wears Prada") and many more. Following that I was selected for the Governor General’s Mentorship Award, a program that pairs mid-career artists with established professionals to help develop their career. I had the great fortune to be paired with Eugene Levy. Over several months Mr. Levy worked with me on the script, to fine tune it and get it to a point where it was ready to be filmed. And now here we are...

The cast and crew are coming together, the pieces are falling into place, and we’ve managed to secure a good portion of the funding. Now we just need your help to make it to the finish line.

Daniel Perlmutter and Ennis Esmer discuss "Big News From Grand Rock" (formerly "Fit to Print").

Dan has been working as a writer, producer and director in the film and television industries for the past 15 years. He co-wrote and co-produced the dark comedy “Peepers”, which was nominated for five Canadian Comedy Awards. He co-founded “micromovie studio” Automatic Vaudeville Studios in 1998, where he produced, wrote and directed dozens of short and medium length films.

Judy Holm and Michael McNamara, producers

Judy and Michael have been making films for their company Markham Street Films Inc. for over ten years. They’ve won lots of awards for their work. Their films have premiered at TIFF, Hot Docs, Palm Springs, SXSW and the Sundance Film Festival.  They love comedy and are really pleased to be making a film with Dan, who they think is an incredible comedic talent.


Samy Inayeh, director of photography

Samy Inayeh is an award-winning Cinematographer that has an impressive body of work in film, television and music videos. Some of Samy’s credits include the feature film "The Last Will and Testament of Rosalind Leigh", for which Samy was awarded the Best Cinematography Award at the Buenos Aires Rojo Sangre Film Festival. His other feature film, "A Beginner's Guide to Endings", starring Harvey Keitel, earned him the Best Cinematographers Award at the Newport Beach Film Festival and a nomination for Best Feature Film at the Director’s Guild of Canada Awards.

Naz Goshtasbpour, production designer

Naz Goshtasbpour is an accomplished production designer whose work has included a number of award-winning films. Recent projects include upcoming series "Inhuman Condition" and "Backpackers". Past projects include "Running Mates", "High Chicago", "Empire of Dirt" and "It Was You, Charlie". She was nominated for the 2012 DGC award for her work on "Flashpoint" and "Dave vs. Death". She is currently in preproduction on Vincenzo Natali’s latest series “Darknet”.

Andre Ethier and Sandro Perri, music composers

Respected members of the Toronto independent music scene, Andre Ethier and Sandro Perri have recently begun a collaborative partnership scoring films. Both have been nominated for Canada's coveted Polaris music prize, Sandro was long listed for his record "Impossible Spaces" and Andre was short listed with his band The Deadly Snakes for their record "Porcella".

Roderick Deogrades, editor

Rod is an award-winning picture and sound editor. Some of his recent picture editing credits include "Still Mine", "The Ghosts In Our Machine", "One Week" and "Victoria Day". In sound editing, he has worked on such films as "Splice", "Silent Hill" and "Passchendeale". He is currently editing the documentary "Reasonable Doubt".

Kim MacLachlan, 1st assistant director

Kim is a talented 1st assistant director with a long roster of experience in filmmaking. Her recent experience includes the TV series "Defiance", "Curious and Unusual Deaths", "King", "Bubble Wrap Kids", and "Inventions that Shook the World". She also worked as 1st AD on the popular TV series "Queer as Folk" and the Canadian psychological thriller "Cube Zero".



• For those of you visiting our set, we anticipate shooting in September/October in Midland, Ontario and Toronto, Ontario. However, this has the potential to change. We will keep you updated so you can plan ahead for your visit.

• If you become an extra (C$300 reward), you must be a Canadian citizen and be over 18 years of age. You must not be a member of any actors' union or guild.

• You must be over 18 years of age to attend the screenings or visit the set.

• Some rewards may require additional paperwork. If you are appearing in the film or submitting a script for comment, or attending a reward event or activity, you will have to sign an additional release.

• For the Associate Producer or Executive Producer credits, you will have to provide proof of Canadian citizenship as required by the Canadian Audio-Visual Certification Office.  We will help you with this.

• The final cut of the film may have to be further edited in certain cases to adhere to the laws in the country in which it is being viewed, or for different types of media.

• For those rewards that involve the participation of cast members, we reserve the right to determine which cast members may attend, and the exact cast members attending an event may be subject to change.

• This fundraising campaign is all subject to applicable Indiegogo rules/regulations (including but not limited to the Indiegogo Terms of Use http://www.indiegogo.com/about/terms and Privacy Policy http://www.indiegogo.com/about/privacy), movie guild and union rules and applicable law. If any of this conflicts with a reward, we will work with you in good faith to give you a substitute reward or portion of the reward, as applicable. Rewards cannot be transferred, substituted or redeemed for cash.


Find This Campaign On
raised by 222 people in 1 month
100% funded
No time left
$50,000 CAD goal
Fixed Funding This campaign has ended and will receive all funds raised.
Campaign Closed
This campaign ended on September 23, 2013
Select a Perk
  • $10CAD
    Paper Carrier

    A Special Thank You to you mentioning your name on the film's Facebook page and Twitter (you may remain anonymous if you prefer).

    4 claimed
  • $15CAD

    Everything above plus a Special Thank You credit mentioning your name in the film and a digital poster sent to you (you may remain anonymous if you prefer).

    4 claimed
  • $25CAD
    Copy Writer

    Everything above plus a PDF version of the script signed by the director and lead cast members.

    12 claimed
  • $30CAD

    Everything above, plus a digital download of the film.

    28 claimed
  • $35CAD
    Photo Editor

    Everything above, plus get your photo taken with the star of Big News From Grand Rock (The Listener's Ennis Esmer), at an exclusive photo session the day before filming begins in Midland.

    4 claimed
  • $50CAD
    Junior Editor

    Everything above plus an exclusive behind the scenes video.

    17 claimed
  • $60CAD
    Contributing Editor

    Everything above, plus a DVD copy of the film. (C$10 additional charge for shipping outside of Canada.)

    29 claimed
  • $100CAD
    Cub Reporter

    Everything above plus an e-book of behind the scenes photos and notes from the production.

    25 claimed
  • $125CAD
    Staff Reporter

    Everything above plus a DVD copy of the Markham Street Films documentary "100 Films and A Funeral" – the story of the spectacular rise and untimely demise of PolyGram Films, makers of "Fargo", "The Big Lebowski", "Four Weddings and A Funeral" and other stellar films. (C$10 additional charge for shipping outside of Canada.)

    11 claimed
  • $250CAD
    Ace Reporter

    Everything above plus an invitation to an exclusive screening of the film to be held in Midland, Ontario. (Screening date and location TBA. Any other costs, including travel and accommodations, not included.)

    2 claimed
  • $250CAD
    Copy Editor

    Everything above plus an invitation to an exclusive test screening in Toronto, Ontario. (Screening date and location TBA. Any other costs, including travel and accommodations, not included.)

    16 claimed
  • $300CAD
    Associate News Editor

    Everything above plus be an extra in a crowd scene in the film that will be shot in Midland, Ontario. There is no guarantee that you or the scene will make the final cut, but we will do our best. (Date and location TBA. Any other costs, including travel and accommodations not included.)

    3 out of 25 claimed
  • $500CAD
    Creative Director

    Receive a one hour script meeting with writer/director Daniel Perlmutter on your own script (maximum 120 pages) via Skype or in person if you live in Toronto, Ontario. We will contact you to arrange for submission of your script. Excludes personalized video from Art Director perk.

    1 out of 10 claimed
  • $500CAD
    Art Director

    Everything above, plus a personalized video made for you and from select cast and crew. Excludes script meeting with Daniel Perlmutter.

    0 claimed
  • $750CAD
    Senior News Editor

    Everything above plus the chance to have lunch on set with Ennis Esmer during production. (Exact date and location TBA. Any other costs, including travel and accommodations not included.)

    1 out of 20 claimed


    Make a night of it! Everything above, plus you and a guest join the director and select cast for dinner followed by a sneak peek screening in Toronto, Ontario. (Date and location TBA. Any other costs, including travel and accommodations, not included.)

    3 out of 3 claimed


    Everything above plus you’ll receive an Associate Producer credit in the film. Must be a Canadian citizen.

    2 out of 2 claimed

    Media Mogul

    Everything above, except for the Associate Producer credit, because you get the big cheese credit of Executive Producer in the film. Must be a Canadian citizen.

    2 out of 2 claimed
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