Let’s Do It: A Staged Reading

Directed and presented by Bryce Zabel. Featuring Edd Hall and a cast of UO and Eugene Actors.

Ed's Coed film stillThe producers of Let’s Do It — the film comedy about the making of Ed’s Coed, the first full-length student film ever made, produced back in 1929 — will stage a reading of the screenplay “live” on stage on the last night of the festival. With a cast of UO and community actors, and noted TV personality Edd Hall, the current film’s writer/producer, UO alum Bryce Zabel ’76, will direct the staged reading.

Let’s Do It tells the story of how, during the final days of the Roaring 20s, two UO students — James Raley and Carvel Nelson — talked film legend Cecil B. DeMille into loaning them a camera to produce their dream film. The camera came with the cameraman, James McBride. His arrival in Eugene fuels the film’s rom-com laughs.

Prior to the reading, selected scenes from the original student film will be shown to the audience so they can appreciate the challenge of adaptation faced by Zabel and his wife, Jackie. The Zabels won the Writers Guild of America screenwriting award in 2008 for their Hallmark mini-series, Pandemic. They aslo produced the successful 2005 UO fundraising kickoff event, Lights, Camera… Oregon!

Bryce Zabel will take questions from the audience after the screening, covering everything from fundraising to adapting true stories to the expected Eugene production. Although the film is still in pre-production, it is intended to shoot on some of the same UO locations where the original scenes actually took place.