OCEAN CITY – The filming of Ping-Pong Summer in Ocean City starts in just a couple weeks and auditions for “day players” and a main female role are set for this Friday to round out the cast.
On Friday, Sept. 7, from 4-9 p.m. at the Holiday Inn Oceanfront on 66th Street and Coastal Highway, auditions will be held seeking kids and adults of all ages for small roles, known as day players, as well as Caucasian girls ages 15 to 18 to play the lead sister in the movie.
Call 504-233-0515 or email [email protected] to reserve a time slot.
For those who are interested in being an extra, send an email to ping[email protected] with a photo and contact information.
Ping-Pong Summer is described by producers as the original Karate Kid meets National Lampoons Vacation meets Wild Style.
It is a comedy based in the mid-1980s in Ocean City with a soundtrack and style to match. The plot follows a teenager boy vacationing in Ocean City who is obsessed with Ping-Pong and hip-hop.
Writer/Director Michael Tully first started working on the script his senior year in high school and has been working on it for the last 20 years. He is from Mt Air, Md., and vacationed regularly with his family in Ocean City growing up.
Academy Award winner Susan Sarandon, who has starred in Dead Man Walking and Thelma and Louise, among dozens of others, has committed to the film. Other actors who have signed on are Amy Sedaris, known for her voice in Puss in Boots and Chicken Little; Judah Friedlander, who is best known for his work on NBC’s 30 Rock; and new additions are Lea Thompson, known for her lead role in Back to the Future and television series Caroline in the City, and John Hannah who starred in The Mummy and television series Spartacus.
In July, the Ocean City Mayor and City Council voted to match Worcester County’s $100,000 in funding for the movie and to channel the funds through a fund created by the Greater Ocean City Chamber of Commerce.
The Dispatch caught up today with one of the film’s producers, George Rush, who was in San Francisco and is preparing to relocate to Ocean City this week to begin production on Sept. 19, which is planned to wrap up on Oct, 26.
Rush said Ping-Pong Summer is in its pre-production stages, which involves hiring department heads and security and pinning down filming locations.
“Were basically tying up all the loose ends and making our schedule so that when we start production it will be smooth,” Rush said.
The main cast is mostly made of the younger generation and most of those parts have been filled from kids who live in Maryland. Some of the younger cast is local to Ocean City including the female lead. Those names have not been released yet as paperwork is being finished up.
“As we have been saying all along, we really want a sense of authenticity for the time of 1985 but also for the place, the Eastern Shore of Maryland,” Rush said. “I know for Mike Tully it is really important that the kids are from Maryland.”
According to Rush, filming will be taking place all over Ocean City. Locations are still being finalized but the iconic spots, such as the Boardwalk, are definite areas of where shooting will take place.
“We are trying to represent as many iconic places as possible,” he said.
Rush urged people to apply for extra positions.
“We are filming during the week in September and October but we want to make it look like busy summer time so we are certainly going to want to fill up the scenes with people,” he concluded.