Movie filmed at Sunshine Point Camp “Boys Vs. Girls” ready for viewing

by Sylene Argent

& photos by Jesse Hebert (2018)

During the early part of the summer in 2018, there was a lot of buzz throughout the region about a movie being filmed at Kiwanis-Sunshine Point Camp in Harrow called, “Boys Vs. Girls.” After a lot of hard work and dedication, the film was recently released and is now ready to be viewed.

  The film combined the efforts of local filmmaker Michael Stasko and well-known Canadian actors, Colin Mochrie, of “Whose Line is it Anyway?” and Kevin McDonald, of “The Kids in the Hall.”

  “Boys Vs. Girls” picks up at a summer camp based in the 1990s, in its first season of going co-ed, and the counsellors clash. In the film, Stasko pays up on the battle of the sexes and ensuing pranks as a nod to films created in the ‘80s and ‘90s, where that battle of the sexes theme was popular.

Stasko wrote the script, directed, and produced the piece. He said he pulled the concept for the film from his own real-life experience. “The camp I did go to went co-ed in 1990, and I was only ten at the time.”

In the film, Mochrie, plays the head camp counsellor, Roger, and McDonald plays the camp’s custodian.

Both actors were Stasko’s first choice for those roles, and he was elated to have them both agree to take on the parts within 24-hours of sending the request.

“I had a little bit of a track-record going into it, this was my fifth feature film,” Stasko said, noting when early in his career, he used unknown actors for his movies. But, his previous films got some distribution and made it to film festivals. “By the time “Boys Vs. Girls” came around, I now at least had the ability to get the script into the hands of the agents of the people I would have like to have had.”

That success helps snowball other aspects, Stasko said, like being able to get more financing and getting other cast members involved.

“We were fortunate to get the location out at Kiwanis-Sunshine Point Camp,” Stasko said. “We needed a camp that would let us use it in the summer time. And, usually by default, camps are busy during the summer.”

In addition to being primarily shot at Sunshine Point Camp, a few scenes took place at Kingsville District High School.

“1990 is a period piece. That’s thirty-years ago. Everything had to be hand-created and recreated for the era,” Stasko said, adding the crew members put in a lot of sweat- equity to get that film done. It is always hopeful, when making a film, to get the community to rally around it, and that is what happened in Essex and throughout all of Essex County, he added.

  Local support, he said, is incredibly important not only for the film to be successful, but it also helps all the careers of all the young filmmakers involved, as now they can put this work on their resume, which could lead to more success in creating their own films and getting financing for their own projects in the future.

  Filmmakers, Stasko said, prepare to combats challenges along the long journey of creating a film. “Boys Vs. Girls,” however, ended up with a really good cast that bonded well, “Way better than I could have hoped for, which was great. We ended up with a crew that was willing to put in all the hours that were needed, and beyond.”

  Though creating a film, from drafting ideas to hitting film festivals, could take years to complete, those involved need to treat it like a marathon. They need to expect challenges to come up and need be prepared to handle them, Stasko said.

  Stasko produced the film with Theodore Bezaire. He said it took close to a year to edit, do the mixing, and master the sound. It then was submitted to film festivals in 2019 and 2020. He added production designer, Emily Eansor, did a fantastic job with a shoe-string budget.

  “Boys Vs. Girls”, Stasko said, did will on the film festival circuit. It won the award for Best Canadian Film at the Canadian International Comedy Film Festival. It also won the Best Feature Film Award and the Audience Award at the Chicago Comedy Film Festival.

  Winning the Audience Award was especially nice for Stasko, as he said his work had never before been selected by a crowd as being a preferred piece.

  The success continued at the Florida Comedy Film Festival, as “Boys Vs. Girls” won the awards for Best Writer and for Best Ensemble Cast. In addition, Mochrie won the award for Best Actor.

  What is nice about “Boys Vs. Girls” is that it offers a chance to escape reality in a time of uncertainty, and make it feel like one is somewhere else, Stasko added.

  More information about the film can be found at The film is available for purchase on many platforms.

  Looking ahead, Stasko will work with Essex filmmaker, Jakob Skrzypa, to create the movie, “Vampire Zombies…from Space!” He noted the pandemic has pushed back the start date, but he is looking forward to getting to work on the piece, which he hopes will be sometime this summer.

  Stasko will also be starting a T.V. series on CFTV called, “Windsor/Essex Showcase.” There is currently a call for content, and those who have created anything, from student short films and documentaries to recorded performances or experimental films, are urged to email to learn more.

© 2021 The Essex Free Press ltd.

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