Philly film company clears up Lightstreet incident

Julia Bagnata, News Editor

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A woman on Lightstreet Road asking young girls to participate in a movie has been vindicated by the Greater Philadelphia Film Office.

On Monday, Sept. 24 Bloomsburg University officials reported to Bloomsburg Police about suspicious activity that occurred on Lightstreet Rd.

Students described a woman with a Russian accent passing out fliers to young girls.

The fliers advertised casting for a new film being produced by an Academy Award-winning team shooting in Pennsylvania next year, looking for young girls and women of all ethnicities to play lead roles.

Due to the informality of the casting, many students feared that the woman was connected to scamming and potential sex trafficking; it was even rumored by some students that visiting the website advertised on the flier would place a tracer on phones and computers.

“[These rumors] really scared me,” said Sophomore Music Education major Tim Kirk. “I started thinking how there’s truly no safe place anymore, even on our campus.”

Senior English Literature major Sarah Goulet expressed similar emotions to Kirk, saying “my immediate reaction is concern…that’s a serious safety issue for both the campus and the town.”

Since the Bloomsburg Police were not notified of this activity until the day after it occurred, rumors surrounding this suspicious activity continued until the following Monday, Oct. 1, when the Greater Philadelphia Film Office called the Bloomsburg Police confirming the legitimacy of the film, quelling the rumors.

GPFO told police that there are in fact two women in the area searching for potential candidates for their independent film, and were approaching individuals who have the “look” they are after.

The GPFO is a Pennsylvania non-profit founded in 1985 that serves Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia counties.

The commission’s goals are to support the growth of the local film and video industry, attract production to the region, and provide producers free assistance while serving as a go-between for them and the local communities.  

Despite this assurance, some students are still skeptical. Goulet stated that she might still be suspicious, depending on the avenues for which the casting was taking place.

“I don’t know if I’d trust a poster or someone walking up to me…unless it was a publicly profiled place,” she said.

Kirk feels the same as Goulet, and he hopes that he and other Bloomsburg University students will continue to be aware of potentially dangerous activity on campus and the surrounding areas.

Bloomsburg Campus Police encourage residents to report suspicious activity to authorities as soon as its observed so they they can determine if there is a possible threat. Bloomsburg Police can be reached at (570) 317-2846.