Look for three local names in the credits for “Beyond the Mask,” a faith-based action film now playing at the Regal Quaker Crossing.
Working behind-the-scenes on the film were sisters Shiloh Crook and Ashley Ledden, who hail from Sinclairville. The Crook sisters – including older sister Jordan – have had some involvement working on faith-based movies for about 13 years, according to their father Larry Crook.
It all started when their friends Ethan and Dustin Ledden, also Western New York natives, approached Crook about having his oldest daughter, Jordan, and Ashley, help with a film called “Hartwood Dagger” they were working on in Wisconsin.
Crook allowed his two daughters to work on the film for four months — Jordan moving set pieces and helping with set up and Ashley helping with photography.
“I was intrigued by the movie-making process,” Ashley Crook said. “My friends started making movies, and I joined them. I liked that a movie could last longer than I could and people could enjoy it even when I’m not there.”
Now, Ashley, 29, and Ethan Ledden, 32, are married and working on films together. For “Beyond the Mask,” Ethan Ledden was director of photography and his wife was effects artist and assisted camera people on set.
Shiloh Crook, 23, did costuming for the film. Her father said she learned to sew from her mother and has always had a strong interest in history, so the working on the film, set in 1776, was a great fit.
In order to get the “1776 feel” for the clothing, designers wore the costumes to dirty them.
“We had a blast ‘weathering’ the costumes to make them look worn,” Shiloh Crook said via email. “Instead of rubbing dirt into them or painting them, we just wore the costumes ... for everything. I remember playing multiple games of Ultimate Frisbee or Soccer in them. A cheer would go up if someone slid and got a grass stain.”
“Working with the ‘Beyond the Mask’ costuming was a dream come true because I had been wanting to work on a movie for some time,” she said.