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'Precious Mettle' movie filming in Aurora, Naperville attracting attention

While sitting just a few feet away from actor Paul Sorvino, Campton Hills resident Peggy Westrom admitted she is a movie set junkie.

On Sunday, Westrom watched as Sorvino and the other cast members, including former “Diff’rent Strokes” star Todd Bridges, acted out different scenes in the independent movie “Precious Mettle.” The filming took place in an Aurora neighborhood close to where her sister, Brenda Kuntz, lives.

“I love the behind the scenes of how they do things,” Westrom said.

She also was on hand last year in Plano to watch the filming of “Man of Steel,” as well as for the filming of “Road to Perdition” in Geneva a few years back.

“It’s an adrenaline thrill,” Westrom said. “While they were filming ‘Road to Perdition,’ I got great pictures of Tom Hanks.”

In the movie, Sorvino plays a police commander who attempts to help a daughter he never knew escape heroin addiction and a past that endangers her while investigating his best friend’s murder. The movie is being made by Chicago-based Amarok Productions,

Sorvino said he was intrigued by the script.

“It’s a story of redemption,” Sorvino said, during a break from the filming. “A broken man finds a new reason to live, to help his long-lost daughter, who he didn’t know he had. It’s also a crime whodunit, so it’s got elements of two things. It’s a character driven drama of a man resurrected and resurrecting his daughter, who is a heroin addict, and a crime whodunit.”

During the filming of the movie, Sorvino is working alongside Aurora police officers. Filming also has taken place in Naperville.

“We tried to be as authentic as we could, without being too picky,” said Italian director Edmond Coisson, who also co-wrote the script. “It is a movie, it’s not a documentary. In a movie, you have to have a little bit of latitude.”

Coisson is the founder of the Naperville Independent Film Festival and had previously lived in Naperville for 21 years.

Bridges said he also liked the script and the opportunity to work with Sorvino.

“When I found out that Paul Sorvino was in it and a couple of other people I knew, I really wanted to be in it,” Bridges said. “When you’re around actors like him, you can take notes and learn, and just get better with your craft.”

The former actor recently started a production company with his brother. And he has fond memories of “Diff’rent Strokes.”

“The first film that we’re going to do is my life story,” Bridges said. “ ‘Diff’rent Strokes’ was one of the biggest shows of its time, and I was happy to have been on it. It was one of the best parts of my life.”

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