Posted: 10/13/2011



by Elaine Hegwood Bowen

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MUNGER ROAD – Writer/Director Nick Smith at theaters October 13-15

Film by Columbia College Chicago graduate blows up, beats Hollywood box office; opens in 26 local theaters

In Bartlett, Illinois,-a town near St. Charles- there are 30-year-old stories about paranormal activity at a railroad crossing after a bus of school children were killed by a train there. Apparently, if a person stops their car on the tracks, puts it in neutral, good ghosts will push your car off the track. If you put baby powder on your back bumper, you can actually see their handprints. Traditionally, it’s believed that the hand prints are children’s ghosts who were killed on the train tracks and are trying to protect the car’s passengers from meeting a similar fate. Nick Smith is the writer and director of Munger Road who wrote the script in 2010 and brought together his friends from Columbia College to produce the film in the late summer of 2010 in his hometown of St. Charles, Illinois.

Munger Road is located just outside Saint Charles in the village of Bartlett. The road and the train tracks that cross over it have been adorned with legends for over three decades. Over the years, a long game of phone tag has led to numerous reasons why the road is haunted… however since the 1980s… the only unsolved murder mysteries in Dupage County belong to that road. Also, just before the movie began filming… a famous bird watcher was struck and killed by a train mysteriously.


After opening one week in the St. Charles and west suburban area at nine movie theatres, Munger Road grossed over $100,000 - running alongside DreamWorks’s Real Steel. It beat out some suburban theatres showing Sony/Columbia’s The Ides of March, starring George Clooney. Munger Road opens in 26 Chicago and suburban cities October 14. Writer and Director Nick Smith will discuss this great film October 13, 14 and 15 at the following locations:

Thursday, October 13, 2011: Midnight Screening “Thriller Thursdays” at ICON Theater, 1011 South Delano Court East, (off of Roosevelt Ave). 312. 564.2104

Friday and Saturday, October 14 – 15, 2011: 8:10 p.m. and 10:10 p.m. in Oak Park’s Lake Theater (1022 Lake St.) 708.848.8870.

Munger Road’s success so far is phenomenal activity for an indie distributed film, which The Daily Herald said, “Move over Elm Street: There’s a new road to terror in town.”

Roger Ebert said, “Munger Road does an efficient, skillful job of audience manipulation using the techniques of darkness and vulnerability, and the truth that a horror not seen is almost always scarier than one you can see.

To view trailer, visit

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The film can be seen at the following theaters:

KERASOTES THEATRES -Showplace Icon 16, Chicago, IL
AMERICAN MULTI-CINEMA, INC.; Galewood 14, Chicago, Ford City 14, Chicago, The Country Club Hills 16, Country Club Hills, IL; Crestwood Theatre 18, Crestwood IL; Lake in the Hills 12, Lake in the Hills, IL; Showplace 16, Naperville, IL; Schererville 12, Schererville, IN
CINEMARK USA; Century Strafford Sq 16, Bloomingdale, IL; Century Evanston 12, Evanston, IL; Tinseltown 17, North Aurora, IL; Cinemark 17, Woodridge, Woodridge, IL
REGAL ENTERTAINMENT GROUP; City North 14, Chicago; Showplace 16, Crystal Lake, IL; Lincolnshire 20, Lincolnshire, IL; Round Lake Beach 18, Round Lake Beach, IL.
MARCUS THEATRES; Addison Cinemas 21, Addison, IL; Chicago Western Heights Cinemas 21, Chicago Heights IL; Gurnee Mills 20, Gurnee, IL
GOODRICH QUALITY THEARES: Kendall 10, Oswego, IL; Portage 16, Portage, IN
GREAT LAKES THEATRE SERVICE: Cinema 12 Theatre, Carpentersville, IL; Lake 7, Oak Park, IL; Cinema 12 Theater, Carpentersville, IL; Portage 16, Portage, IN; Kendall 10, Oswego, IL; Addison Cinemas 21, Addison, IL; Chicago Western Heights Cinemas 21, Chicago Heights IL; Gurnee Mills 20, Gurnee, IL; Round Lake Beach 18, Round Lake Beach, IL; Showplace 16, Crystal Lake IL.

Elaine Hegwood Bowen is an editor, writer and film critic in Chicago, who also serves as a news editor for

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