Local producers release ‘Kidnap’ to movie theaters

Published 12:13 am Saturday, August 5, 2017

LAPLACE — Released to more than 2,000 theaters across the United States and Canada this week, “Kidnap” has all the makings of a Hollywood blockbuster.

Megastar and Oscar winner Halle Berry plays the lead character, a single mother forced to chase down her son after he is kidnapped.

The action starts within minutes, film producers say, morphing from a heart-pounding chase to an edge-of-your-seat psychological thriller during the course of an hour and a half.

Kidnap stars a determined Halle Berry as a single mother forced to chase down her son after he is kidnapped.

A unique aspect of the film for River Region theater fans is the effort by production company Gold Star Films, which made the movie possible.

Led by Todd Trosclair, Joey Tufaro and Jarred Bradley, all of who claim roots or connections to the River Parishes, Gold Star Films produced and financed “Kidnap.”

Trosclair and Tufaro started the company in 2012, first working on the Arnold Schwarzenegger-led “Maggie,” filmed largely in St. John the Baptist and St. Charles parishes.

“Kidnap” represents a different vehicle altogether, as its 2,378-theater rollout, according to boxofficemojo.com, makes it one of the weekend’s most widely distributed films.

The box office tracking website also estimates “Kidnap” will finish as this weekend’s seventh most watched film in theaters after all receipts are counted.

A similar Berry-led thriller, “The Call,” debuted with $17.1 million in 2013.

“We tested this movie all over,” Trosclair said. “The audience reaction is just unbelievable. They are cheering for Halle; they are cheering for the kid. The audience reaction is unbelievable.”

Producers said 150 people worked for 90 days filming the movie, bringing “a big bump to the local economy,” according to Trosclair.

Although the metro New Orleans area does not play a major roll in Kidnap’s storytelling, local movie fans will surely recognize references and locations relating to Airline Highway, Jefferson Parish, Earhart Expressway, Little Farms, City Park and the Huey P. Long Bridge.

According to Tufaro, film fans will most enjoy Halle Berry’s performance, which he describes as a single mom turning into a super mom.

“She is a very hard working megastar who has a tremendous amount of pressure on her on a daily basis but is so professional throughout,” Tufaro said.

Trosclair agreed, describing Berry as “incredibly nice and down to Earth.”

“She is a giant star, but always makes you feel you are just as equally important as her when you are in the room,” Trosclair said.