If you build it, they really will come.
Peacock, NBCUniversal’s streaming service, will film a limited series based on the 1989 film ‘Field of Dreams’ in Iowa this summer – but they won’t use the Major League Baseball field that popped up Last year.
The series – created by Mike Schur of ‘The Office’, ‘Parks and Rec’ and ‘The Good Place’ – will use ‘the local team, suppliers and vendors to build, restore, transport and decorate the decorations”. according to an exclusive announcement in the Hollywood Reporter.
Although much remains unknown about the series’ history, the series will “reimagine the mix of family film, baseball, Iowa, and magic that made the feature film so enduring and beloved.” the reporter said.
“Field of Dreams” follows an Iowa farmer, played by Kevin Costner, who builds a baseball diamond in his corn fields. To his surprise, ghosts of baseball legends begin to frequent the field.
The diamond used in the film, near Dyersville, has been preserved and tens of thousands of fans flock to see the site, run the bases and hit a few balls during the warmer months. A purpose-built park next door hosted the first official MLB game in Iowa last August.
Neither the MLB pitch nor the original diamond will be used in the series because this summer scheduled match on August 11 will clash with productionsources told the reporter.
“What I love about this production is that it takes the magic of Dyersville and expands the impact to other parts of the state,” said Iowa Film Commissioner Liz Gilman. As of now, filming is expected to take place in Polk, Mahaska, Clinton, and Boone counties.
Discussion about the series began in 2019, Gilman said, and producers have been quietly coming to Iowa to scout locations ever since. Schur and executive producer Morgan Sackett, an Okoboji-area Iowa native, were even in the stands for the MLB game last August.
“They were blown away by the reaction from the people there,” Gilman said. “I mean, you’ve seen it on TV: the beautiful heavenly sky, the home run in the cornfield, seeing grown men cry. It was bucolic and beautiful and they were like, ‘Oh my God, we have to come here.’ »
Producers could have easily recreated a diamond on a backlot or in another state, but Schor and Sackett knew how central Iowa itself was to the story of “Field of Dreams,” Gilman said. .
“The creative team behind this limited series care deeply about the legacy of ‘Field of Dreams,’ and we felt we just couldn’t make it happen without filming in Iowa,” Schur and Sackett said in a statement. joint statement to the rapporteur.
“You can’t think of the film without thinking of the state – and vice versa.”
Local partners named so far include Renovo Media Group, a Clear Lake company that will provide technical expertise, and Musco Lighting and Iowa Sports Turf, who will “help light, design and build the baseball diamond that will be featured in the show.
Much more about the series and production will be released in the coming weeks, including casting for extras, the schedule for a production assistant boot camp to be held in Des Moines on June 4-5 and , of course, the stars.
“I wasn’t told who the stars are, but I was told they’re ‘names you know,'” Gilman said. “‘A Hollywood legend’ is a phrase the producers used.”
In the film industry, successful IP like “Field of Dreams” is king, Gilman said. And many studios are reformatting and rehiring proven IP to amplify stories they know have a built-in fan base.
“It will bring a whole new generation of appreciation for ‘Field of Dreams’, expanding on a story that has been around since the 1980s,” Gilman said.
“Field of Dreams” was conceived in Iowa City for the Iowa Writers Workshop, then written into a novel by author WP Kinsella. This book became a screenplay, then a movie classic, and now a sports attraction in rural America.
“It’s a Iowa story,” Gilman pointed out, “and it’s the perfect story to reimagine as a digital series.
And she’s especially glad that growers understood what so many Iowans already knew: “There’s a certain magic in our cornfields.”
Courtney Crowder, the Register’s Iowa columnist, travels the state’s 99 counties telling the stories of Iowa. She is a master of parallel parking who is familiar with gravel roads. Join her at [email protected] or 515-284-8360. Follow her on Twitter @courtneycare.