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Columbus, Indiana stars in John Cho movie named 'Columbus'

Posted at 12:17 PM, Feb 24, 2017

COLUMBUS, Ind. -- Columbus, Indiana may be more than 2,000 miles from Hollywood, but the town is now the star of a new movie, aptly named, "Columbus."

"Columbus" is the story of a man named Jin, who is played by John Cho of "Harold & Kumar" and "Star Trek" fame. Jin comes to Columbus when his father, a retired architecture professor, slips into a coma while on a trip to deliver a lecture in the Indiana town.

Jin meets a woman who is also caring for an ailing parent, and the two bond over their parents and Columbus' architecture. 

Erin Hawkins, who works for the Columbus visitors' center, worked closely with the production crew. 

"The ultimate fantasy would be that it would be a tourism boom for us in the same way that say 'The Bridges of Madison County' was for Madison County, Iowa several years ago," Hawkins said. 

"Columbus" quickly became one of the favorites at this year's Sundance Film Festival in California. 

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Mayor Jim Lienhoop didn't know what to expect when he went to see "Columbus" on the big screen.

"The notion that there was going to be a story about architecture made into a movie was a little bit hard for some of us to grasp, but the people who put this together are incredibly creative," Lienhoop said. 

The movie was directed by Kogonada, his first foray into directing, according to IMDB.

Columbus resident Greg Scherschel had a small part in the movie, working with the Kogonada.

"It was a fun event for me," Scherschel said. "I think it's a wonderful thing for Columbus because it really did showcase the architecture and made that available to a whole new group of people."

Kogonada focused on some of Columbus' architectural gems, like the North Christian Church and I.M. Pei's Rogers Memorial Library.

What started as an unscheduled stop off I-65 while en route to Tennessee, turned into a brainstorm, then a script, now an indie film festival masterpiece.  

The film is expected to hit theaters sometime this year, but it's unclear when. The director and producers are still working out things with distributors. 

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