'Orchard House' Wraps Scenes On Grafton's North Street

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The McInnis Home at 35 North St. in Grafton served as a set for the movie "Orchard House" over the past two weeks. Photo Credit: Jennifer Lord Paluzzi
A large tent in the backyard, along with a network of ducts, raises curiosity about the goings on at 35 North St. in Grafton, which served as a set for the movie "Orchard House." Photo Credit: Jennifer Lord Paluzzi

GRAFTON, Mass. — For two weeks, 35 North St. was the Grafton address that could not be named — it had morphed from historic home to "Orchard House," the set for the film of the same name.

"Orchard House," a modern adaptation of "Little Women," has wrapped its Grafton scenes. The large tent and trucks for the cast and crew are gone, and the long snakes of ducts are no longer pumping cool air into the circa 1827 Greek Revival home.

It is once again only the home of Bob McInnis, who traveled to Florida during the production.

"They told me they liked the house, they really liked the attic," McInnis said at the start of the movie shoot. "They promised to return everything back to the way it was, to better than the way it was."

Most of the film work was confined to the interior. It takes place over the fall and winter, with the plot centered around the four March sisters' efforts to remodel the home. Portable air conditioning units were required to keep its sweater-wrapped cast from melting under the hot lights on summer days.

The Moody Independent film crew has moved on to Worcester but not before adding several pieces of Grafton to the production. A scene involving a fire truck included four Grafton firefighters as extras, Fire Chief Mickey Gauthier said.

"Of course, in the movie, they're going to remove the 'Grafton' on the side of the truck," Gauthier said. "The whole thing is set somewhere else entirely."

That would be Concord, the home of the original Orchard House, where Louisa May Alcott penned "Little Women." The Grafton Country Store and One Grafton Common subbed in for Concord on Friday, with both buildings decorated for Christmas to give the illusion of winter. Several Grafton residents served as extras in the scenes.

The production crew was "very accommodating and professional," McInnis said. The home was recommended to the Moody Independent crew by a neighbor who had heard they were looking for a historic home.

The film stars Julie Berman ("General Hospital"), Kaitlin Doubleday ("Waiting," "Accepted"), Melissa Farman ("Lost," "Temple Grandin"), Molly Kunz ("Battleground"), Charlie Hofheimer ("Mad Men," "Black Hawk Down"), Justin Bruening ("All My Children," "Ringer"), Mark Famiglietti ("Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines") and John Shea ("Gossip Girl," "Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman").

A release date has not been set. As an independent production, it will need to be picked up by a distributor.

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