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'Bountiful' filming in Porterdale
bountiful IMG 0089Web

Porterdale is now a mid-‘50s town in Texas.

At least it is for a couple of days, as crews from Lifetime film scenes for "The Trip to Bountiful" this week and into next week, Porterdale city manager Bob Thomson said.

"It’s kind of cool. They’ve got a late ‘40s/early ‘ 50s Greyhound bus down here, the old rounded, streamlined ones," Thomson said Wednesday.

The made-for-television film, based on a Broadway staging of the story that just wrapped up Oct. 9, will feature a few members of the Broadway cast, including Tony Award winner Cicely Tyson and Vanessa Williams, who will play Tyson’s daughter-in-law.

Reports also state that the film will star Blair Underwood as Tyson’s son and Keke Palmer from VH1’s recent TLC biopic "CrazySexyCool."

According to USA Today, the Lifetime film is scheduled to premiere in 2014.

Originally written for television in 1953, "The Trip to Bountiful’’ made its Broadway debut a year later.

The story was eventually turned into a 1985 film that won an Oscar for actress Geraldine Page. The play, written by Horton Foote and directed by Michael Wilson, returned to Broadway in April.

According to, the story is about a woman living the twilight of her life trapped in an apartment in 1940s Houston with a controlling daughter-in-law and a henpecked son. Her fondest wish — just once before she dies — is to revisit Bountiful, the small Texas town of her youth, to which she still refers as "home."

Her son is too concerned for her health to allow her to travel alone, and her petty daughter-in-law insists they don’t have money to squander on bus tickets. This prompts "escape" attempts each month that coincide with the arrival of the woman’s Social Security check. Then, she makes a successful escape and last trip home.

"It’s an endearing story," Thomson said.

Tim Savage, owner of The Main Event in Porterdale, said the filming would possibly last through Nov. 14. He said his business has been transformed into an old bus station. Savage also noted that crews have filmed scenes on other streets around Porterdale.

As filming is taking place, DOT traffic signs have been posted to alert drivers to slow down. Motorists should expect some delays while driving through the Main Street area.