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A futuristic police state captured on film in Guelph?

Set in the near future, Defective is an independent sci-fi film about a militant fictional police state. Partially shot in Guelph, the film has other strong community ties including local resident and producer Peter Szabo

It’s the near future. The police state with zero tolerance for crime is creating an environment that’s running tensions high, and giving citizens very little freedom. Programmed police enforcers, that appear more robotic than human, must administer the law with a deadly vigilance – literally. A male rule-breaker escapes with his sister after being declared “defective” by the enforcers, and is pursued by an underground rebellion trying to recruit him.

This is the premise of a new Canadian independent film in post-production.

The film, Defective, is produced by Guelph-based Possibility Films Inc, founded in 2007 by Peter Szabo.

Szabo has supervised all aspects of the film’s production, from pulling funding together, the filming and production of the movie, post-production and special effects, and once that is completed, selling and distributing Defective.

The film producer has lived in Guelph since 1997, and became interested in the film industry while writing his first screenplay. Prior to working in film he was a technical and corporate writer.

Once Szabo completed his first screenplay he realized he needed some help to bring his story to life. He joined Ed Video as a member, located on York Road in Guelph. It is a resource centre for members who need assistance and support in producing media arts. Ed Video helped Szabo through workshops and other resources, which resulted in the first sale of “A Day in the Life of a Psychopath”, his first short film.   

Szabo has worked closely with the writer and director of Defective, Reese Eveneshen, who he also worked with on the feature film Dead Genesis (2010).

Dead Genesis is the only other feature film that Szabo has produced; some scenes of Dead Genesis were also shot in Guelph. It was released on Cable TV in the US and Canada, and released on DVD and Blu Ray internationally.

Defective used a variety of locations and sets, with about 30% of filming within the city of Guelph. Other locations include Cambridge, Kitchener, and Brantford. Szabo added that their goal was to make the police enforced city appear like any city in North America, which is why it may be difficult to pinpoint which scenes were filmed in Guelph.

Many people from the cast and crew are from Guelph and surrounding areas, including Ry Barrett, who plays one of the primary police enforcers. Raven Cousens, from Kitchener, is also featured in the film.

Szabo said that Guelph has a lively arts scene, with a lot of support for other art forms.

“Film is another beast, because of the commercial component,” said Szabo. There is a lot that many people don’t understand about the film industry, and it takes a lot of time and money to produce a quality independent film.

“There is certainly a core underground support for filmmaking in Guelph,” added Szabo.

He also said that the City of Guelph and small business owners support independent filmmaking in the city. The City works to assist the industry in providing locations, and many businesses offer their business as a location with an affordable fee.

Szabo added that Defective has been entirely funded by private investors, who wish to stay anonymous, which has provided support for the cast, crew, and the overall vision and project.

The film is expected to be completed production by February 2017.

“Independent films are less predictable with distribution schedules,” added Szabo.

To find out more about Defective, and watch a newly released trailer, visit the Defective: The Movie Facebook Page.

You can find out more about Peter Szabo, and his other projects, by visiting Possibility Film Inc.