Hastings farmstead was backdrop for filmIt’s a story of a troubled boy turned killer who holds a profiler hostage at an old farm, and it happened, in part, just outside of Hastings. The story is fictional – part of the plot for a movie titled “Profile of a Killer,” a psychological thriller in which the boy challenges the profiler to make him stop committing his crimes. The farm is real. Located a couple miles west of Hastings, it’s been in the Volkert family for more than 100 years.
By: Katrina Styx, The Hastings Star-Gazette
It’s a story of a troubled boy turned killer who holds a profiler hostage at an old farm, and it happened, in part, just outside of Hastings.
The story is fictional – part of the plot for a movie titled “Profile of a Killer,” a psychological thriller in which the boy challenges the profiler to make him stop committing his crimes. The farm is real. Located a couple miles west of Hastings, it’s been in the Volkert family for more than 100 years. It’s most recent resident, Herbert Volkert, moved into it in 1942, said his brother, Ferdinand Volkert, who lives in Northfield. Herbert died in December of 2010, leaving Ferdinand in charge of the estate.
It was back in 2009 when the producers of the film came by to look at the old farm, said June Volkert, Ferdinand’s wife. They asked if they could film part of their movie there, so Ferdinand took the request back to his brother, who was living in a rest home at the time.
“He said it would be alright,” Ferdinand said.
Nothing happened, though, until later that year. The Volkert family didn’t have much to do with the filming, June said. The crew moved a few things around inside the old farmhouse, and for a while there was a fake body in the corn crib, but now there’s little indication that the production crew had ever been there.
Jasmine Reid, the producer of the film, said she and the production crew did a lot of driving around the outskirts of the Twin Cities to find a suitable farm. When they saw the Volkert farm with its house, silo and barn, they knew they had found what they were looking for.
“We saw it and knew immediately that this was it,” Reid said.
It was the perfect typical old Minnesota dairy farm, she said.
When it came to setting the scenes, there wasn’t much that had to be done on the Volkert farm.
“We left a lot of things as they were,” Reid said.
The Volkert farm was the setting for all the exterior and barn shots, Reid said. The interior scenes were filmed at another house.
On April 15, cast and crew were invited to a special screening of the film. In the audience was Ferdinand’s and June’s niece, Lillian Broske. The film isn’t as gory as it sounds, Broske said, and it was interesting to her to be able to identify familiar areas captured in the movie. Besides filming part of it on the Volkert farm, the cast and crew shot scenes at a similar house in Cottage Grove as well as a truck stop along Highway 52 by Pine Bend.
Ferdinand and June Volkert got to be part of the truck stop scene as extras. Their job was pretty easy.
“All we did was sit back at the truck stop and pretend we were eating,” June said.
It did give them a chance to see how films are put together.
“It’s really quite a production,” she said.
Reid was impressed with Ferdinand and June Volkert, as well as everyone else they had to work with in Hastings. Because the movie had a low budget, they needed quite a bit of help, she said.
“We got it everywhere we went,” she said.
“Everybody in Hastings that we dealt with was amazing.”
“Profile of a Killer” was originally slated to be a Hollywood film, Reid said, but because they couldn’t raise enough money, the project got shelved until the director, Casparien Tredwell-Owen, decided to finance it himself. At first he just intended to shoot enough of the film for his director’s reel, but the talent they found in Minnesota was too good to pass up, so they went ahead and filmed the whole thing, Reid said.
The film was finished just last month, and the sales part of the project is just getting going. Reid said they’re planning on doing a Minnesota theatrical release, but the dates haven’t been set yet.