Director William Dickerson ’01 and actor Neil Hopkins ’99 on the "Detour" set.
Two Holy Cross alumni — director William Dickerson ’01 and actor Neil Hopkins ’99 — will screen their independent film, “Detour,” on April 24 at 7:30 p.m. in the Fenwick Theatre at the College of the Holy Cross. The event, which is free and open to the public, will be followed by a question and answer session moderated by Steven Vineberg, professor of theatre.
Written and directed by Dickerson, a former English major at the College, “Detour” involves a man named Jackson Alder (Hopkins) who becomes trapped in his car during a brutal mudslide. Amidst these dangerous elements and with no hope of rescue, he must attempt to dig himself out. “Detour” is a story of disaster, desire and survival instincts.
Hailed as “the best U.S. film I’ve seen in 2013” by Tom Charity of CNN, “Detour” has been called an “emotional and psychological roller-coaster ride” by The Examiner, and nothing short of “authentic” by The New York Times.
According to Dickerson, he wanted to create a film that was “a thriller [but in] the context of everyday life.” With this in mind, the film’s protagonist, Jackson “is a true everyman,” revealing how “any of us could have an unexpected disaster in our lives.” Then, explaining the greater meaning of the film, Dickerson states that such disaster “may not take the shape of an enormous mudslide, but it’s not the obstacle that matters, it’s how we confront it and how we find a way to overcome it.”
Dickerson earned his M.F.A. from The American Film Institute and his work has been recognized by film festivals around the country. “Detour” is his debut feature film, and he is currently completing his second, which is titled “The Mirror.” At Holy Cross he completed the film studies program.
Hopkins, the film’s lead, is best known for his recurring role in the hit television show “Lost,” in which he played Liam, Charlie’s heroin-addicted rock star brother. He has also appeared in the Emmy-Award nominated “Big Love” and in “My Name is Earl,” “Grimm,” “CSI: NY,” “Criminal Minds” and “NCIS.”
At Holy Cross, Hopkins was involved in Alternate College Theatre performances including “My Fair Lady” and “Guys and Dolls,” and theatre department productions including Shakespeare’s “Measure for Measure,” and Chekhov’s “The Three Sisters.” He earned his M.F.A. from San Francisco’s American Conservatory Theater.
“Detour,” which debuted on March 29, 2013, is now available both on demand and in select theaters.