Tyler Consolidated High School (TCHS) Sophomore Brittany Weekley will appear on the big screen Oct. 10 when The Light of Freedom premiers at the Marcus Crosswoods Cinema in Columbus, Ohio. Closer to Tyler County, the film will be showing at 7 p.m. on Oct. 23 at Odyssey 7, 430 Pike Street in Marietta, Ohio.
Although having appeared as an extra in 2012's Won't Back Down, which starred Maggie Gyllenhaal, Viola Davis, and Holly Hunter, this upcoming theatrical release marks a first in Weekley's acting career.
"The Light of Freedom is the first movie I've had a speaking part in," she said.
The film chronicles the deeds of real life hero William Hanby as his family risks everything to serve the cause of the Underground Railroad. Weekley plays the part of Belle Nichols; after Belle grows to become friends with Stella, a young slave girl owned by her family, she helps Stella to freedom and eventually grows close to the Hanby family and their cause.
Following its debut at the Marcus Crossroads Cinema in Columbus, The Light of Freedom will continue to show in several locations in Ohio and New York; other locations across the country have also been requested and are pending approval.
"The Light of Freedom is showing in at least one theater per state, and some states will have more than one location," said Weekley, adding that the company responsible for making the film is open to suggestions if people would like to bring the movie to a theater near them. Terry Wiley, owner of the Gaslight Theater in Sistersville, has expressed interest in showing the film.
Weekley explained what prompted her involvement in film and the arts.
"I've always been heavily engulfed in a creative atmosphere, so my love for acting came at a very young age," she said. "I have loved acting since my first Halloween. Pretending to be something I am not has always fascinated me."
Weekley is also involved in ongoing projects.
"I am currently in the process of filming a sitcom called Camp New, and I am preparing to film a movie currently titled Wings of the Wind," she said.
Even with her acting schedule, Weekley finds the time to keep involved with school activities and her community. She is a member of the TCHS Silver Knights Marching Band, is in the National Art Honor Society, has participated in several area plays with Sistersville Community Theater and ArtsLink, and volunteers at the Sistersville Public Library on a regular basis.
"I also sing in a band, play various instruments, and love drawing," she said.
Tickets for The Light of Freedom are available online only and can be purchased at www.thelightoffreedommovie.com/.