"Hyde Park on Hudson" movie stars Hyde Park
A theatrical trailer released over the weekend for a movie starring Hyde Park - and Bill Murray playing FDR - already has critics in Hollywood talking Oscars. But in Hyde Park, they're talking tourism. YNN's John Wagner has the story.
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HYDE PARK, N.Y. -- "They may not come for FDR, but they all see FDR," said Valarie Losey, innkeeper at Inn the Woods.
Four million tourists come to Dutchess County each year. More are likely to come for FDR as excitement builds over the upcoming movie "Hyde Park on Hudson." Franklin Delano Roosevelt's played by actor and comedian Bill Murray, who draws many to theaters and could draw many to Hyde Park.
"Now this is giving him a personality, and it's giving Hyde Park a personality," said Losey, whose bed and breakfast sits in a scenic and serene woods, just minutes from FDR's home. "What else went on in Hyde Park that they want to know about?"
"You'd be surprised by the number of people in this area that have never been to the FDR estate and it's lovely," said Dutchess County resident Joan Merritt.
County tourists spend about $451 million, sustaining 8,700 jobs - like Valarie Losey's, innkeeper at Inn the Woods.
"Oh this is going to open it up, because this again takes that stuffiness away," explained Losey. "It's not a 'oh it's just history and it's a museum,' and 'yeah he was a great president,' but now there's a whole another side of him that they're going to see."
The film is set just before World War II as the president hosts the first ever visit by a reigning English king and queen. The film is seen through the eyes of FDR's Rhinebeck neighbor and possible mistress, Daisy Suckley, played by Laura Linney. Rhinebeck resident Richard Nelson wrote the screenplay.
"More people come to the area, more business, it helps out," said Mike Koliopoulos, manager at Eveready Diner, that sits less than a mile from FDR's home. "Especially in this day, the economy the way it is now, so it can only help - hopefully it's a hit."
Although it was filmed in England, the film references plenty of spots for tourists to visit like Beacon and Rhinebeck's Wilderstein House.
"They can go to the Vanderbilts, they can go out to some of our wineries," continued Mary Kay Vrba, executive director of Dutchess County Tourism, "they can stay in our great bed and breakfasts, and just have a real experience, like the king and queen did when they came to Dutchess County."
Although movie goers won't get to see "Hyde Park on Hudson" until December 7th, the buzz already growing could have tourists stopping by for a sneak peak.
To view the trailer for "Hyde Park on Hudson," go to http://movies.yahoo.com/movie/hyde-park-on-hudson/trailers/.