A Wilde and Wonderful Film Puts Spotlight On Our City


Winston-Salem will host the world premiere of a groundbreaking feature length documentary, “Oscar Wilde About America,” an exploration of modern day America as seen through the wit and wisdom of the Irish poet and playwright Oscar Wilde. The film has strong ties to the Winston-Salem community through its connections to the OUT at the Movies International Film Festival and spent five days filming scenes around the city. 

The film’s writer and director, James Andrew Walsh (Jimmy and Carolyn” and “The Extinction of Fireflies”) thinks the film’s magic lies in its optimistic reflection of our contemporary American life. “The film reimagines Oscar Wilde’s 1882 tour of the United States, as a present day road trip,” he said. “Traveling coast-to-coast, from New York City to Hollywood, the film is a fantastical journey through our wildly diverse country, as Oscar searches for the joy and liberation that eluded Wilde 141 years ago.” 

So, how did Winston-Salem make its way into a lineup of filming locations that includes London, Los Angeles, Palm Springs and Las Vegas? “Because of past visits to Winston-Salem for the annual OUT at the Movies International Film Festival, my team and I had already fallen in love with the city’s vibrant and artistic spirit that you feel the moment you arrive – an ideal location to represent the American South in our film,” he said. 

After starting production in New York, the production crew arrived in June for a week of filming scenes that included a tea party, held in the original Schaffner family home on N. Main St. in Old Salem. The home (branded as the “Mansion on Main” on social media) is run as an art-filled bed and breakfast by Amy Taylor North, who also makes her big-screen debut in the film. 

Max Cullen, Director of Operations and Development for OUT at the Movies, said the week of production came after months of brainstorming with the film’s creative team. “We were honored to assist James and his team in pre-production for the film and host them during their time here. It was a joy to be able to play a part in facilitating the local production of an independent film of this caliber. Whether we were scouting possible shoot locations or making local connections for the crew, everyone we engaged with wanted to help make it a success. Our city is built on a love for the arts and a passion for creativity, and people want to show that off. Having now previewed the film ahead of the premiere, I can say that we accomplished that.” 

The premiere will occur at 8pm on Saturday, February 24th, with a VIP “Dinner with the Stars” preceding the screening at 6pm. Both of these experiences will be hosted at the Milton Rhodes Center for the Arts by the event’s presenting sponsor, The Arts Council of Winston-Salem and Forsyth County. Details about the event can be found at: outatthemovies.org/world-premiere-of-oscar-wilde-about-america


Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Stay up to date with our events and get exclusive article content right to your inbox!

Latest Stories

Other Featured Articles


All Article in Current Issue

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Stay up to date with our events and get exclusive article content right to your inbox!