Filming for Civil War short film underway in Mansfield - KSLA News 12 Shreveport, Louisiana News Weather & Sports

Filming for Civil War short film underway in Mansfield

Crews work inside the the Mansfield Female College Museum to film the short Civil War film "Her Calling," (Source: Nick Lawton, KSLA) Crews work inside the the Mansfield Female College Museum to film the short Civil War film "Her Calling," (Source: Nick Lawton, KSLA)
The Mansfield Female College Museum. (Source: Louisiana Secretary of State) The Mansfield Female College Museum. (Source: Louisiana Secretary of State)
MANSFIELD, LA (KSLA) -

Filming has officially begun this week for a short film about the history of Mansfield Female College during the Civil War.

"Her Calling" will be the story of Margaret Winters, a fictional 19-year-old student played by Fusari, in the historic landscape of 1860s Mansfield, La.

The film touches on the importance of Mansfield Female College as the first of its kind west of the Mississippi River, the school's closing because of the war and its development into a hospital for wounded soldiers.

"Well, I was practicing medicine in New Orleans at the time I received a draft from the War Department of the Confederate States of America," said "Dr. Philip Laurence," played by actor Philip Laurence.

"I arrived at this house and I've been performing surgery. I am but a surgeon. There is little that I can say or do that will alter the course of this war or the course of human events, for that matter. All I can do is try to save as many lives as possible. One advantage we do have is we do have some nurses that have been trained at the college here in Mansfield."

Director/producer Travis Mills and actress/writer Heather Fusari have teamed up for the project, which will compete for the Louisiana Film Prize.

Fusari said she wanted to write the movie to highlight the stories of the college's young women, turning them from ghosts to namesakes.

"Their tasks used to be taking care of the house and family and everything and then they turned into nurses," Fusari said.

Filming began at the Mansfield Female College Museum on Tuesday morning and then will take place at the old Allen House on Wednesday.

"We're getting a lot done in just two days of shooting here at Mansfield Female College and that's a lot for the kind of period setups we're setting up," Mills told KSLA.

The film also features ArkLaTex residents as extras.

"They called and said: 'We need people to be hurt!' I'm like: 'I ain't got anything better to do!'" Caldwell Parish resident Billy Johnson said.

The film's creators are hoping to show a side of history that resonates with residents.

"We're trying to show that women's points of view were still listened to even though sometimes we don't think that they were," said Fusari.

"Regardless of your circumstances in life whether it's war, poverty, find your passion within that," Mills said.

Fusari told KSLA a rough cut of the film will be finished in July in time to qualify for the Louisiana Film Prize and the full movie will be completed by September or October.

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