JONESPORT, Maine — Erica Fae can’t wait to share her indie film, “To Keep the Light,” with Maine audiences.
Fae, a New York City-based performer, is the writer, director, producer and lead actress for the movie, which was filmed in 2014 in Jonesport, with several scenes shot on nearby Mistake Island to include Moose Peak Light. Set in the mid-1800s, the film is about a woman tending a lighthouse for her ailing husband.
The heroine is a fictional character based on the lives of lighthouse keepers Abbie Burgess, known for tending Matinicus Rock Light and Whitehead Light in midcoast Maine, and Ida Lewis, a lighthouse keeper in Rhode Island, Fae said.
“People are really responding well to the film, so that’s exciting,” she said.
“First-time writer-director Erica Fae’s ‘To Keep the Light’ is a quietly mesmerizing look at the lonely life of a lighthouse keeper’s wife who is struggling with her daily duties … in 19th-century Maine,” reads one review by the Orlando Weekly.
“Every shot here is literally a work of art; this movie is like strolling through a museum where one great painting after another hangs on the wall,” reads another review by Cinema 365.
Fae has entered the movie in the Maine International Film Festival, set for July 8-17 in Waterville. She won’t know until sometime later this month or in June if it has been accepted but hopes it will be, she said.
The festival website notes special consideration is given to films shot in Maine or that have a significant Maine theme or focus.
After she knows whether the film has been accepted in the Maine film festival, she will make plans to screen it in Down East Maine, she said.
“I definitely would love to screen the film in Maine,” Fae said. “Everyone says how beautiful it is … because we shot where we shot.”
In Jonesport, several residents said they were looking forward to seeing the film.
“We can’t wait,” Bill Plakson, an officer in charge of data management and membership for the Jonesport Historical Society, said. “Some of the scenes were filmed in our museum.”
He said the historical society was instrumental in helping Fae with details such as how people dressed and what buildings looked like in that era.
“I think my wife [Barbara] and I are going to be in the credits,” he said.
John Bassett of Addison said he is “super excited” to see the film. He and his stepfather, David Pierce, built much of the set. They were able to see it in the movie trailer and are looking forward to seeing it in the film.
“We were afraid it wasn’t going to look old enough for the film, but I think it turned out great,” he said.
Byron Carver Jr., owner of Moosabec Video and Variety in Jonesport, is also looking forward to seeing the movie.
He said he got to know a lot of the cast and crew during the filming.
“They were really nice people,” he said, adding they spent a lot of money at the store.
“I can’t wait for people in Maine to see it,” Fae said.