Feature Film Project “No Reception” Begins Production

June 5, 2023

No Reception, the second project in JPCatholic’s annual Feature Film Program, began principal photography today in the University’s soundstage. As previously announced, the original script was written by seniors Mark Westin and Natalia Roberts, and is being directed by JPCatholic professor Chris Riley. Riley is a screenwriter with over 25 years of experience, and from 1995-1998 he worked as Manager of Script Processing at Warner Bros. His credits include work for Touchstone Pictures, Paramount Pictures, and Fox television network.

The family-friendly comedy is about a posh city dweller who gets lost in the wilderness with nothing but his hand sanitizer, and is soon caught up in a longstanding feud between two forest hermits.

Production will take place over the next four weeks, wrapping June 30th. In addition to two sets in JPCatholic’s soundstage representing bunker and treehouse interiors, locations will include Felicita Park, Elfin Forest, and a cabin in Julian. The cast includes JPCatholic students Timothy Johnson and Donovan Bakin.

No Reception is ridiculous fun,” said Riley. “And it's meaty. It's about things that really matter within our families. I've taken to calling it a family revenge comedy. The production represents a wildly ambitious collaboration between students, faculty, and other industry professionals. We're not making a student film. We're making a world-class film with students. JPCatholic students hold positions of serious responsibility on this project and they're delivering exquisite results. Making a feature film is a massively complex project and our students are rising to the challenge in every department.”

Through the Feature Film Program, the University produces and distributes a feature film on an annual cycle, with the various stages of production built into the curriculum for film students. Over the past several quarters, students and faculty have been busy with courses on story development, set building, and pre-production for No Reception. Last year’s project, O, Brawling Love!, is in the final stages of post-production, with an anticipated release this summer.

Around 40 JPCatholic students of various majors, along with several alumni, are involved in this year’s project both on and off set. Learn more about the team behind No Reception here.