A co-production between 1804 Productions and Pigasus Pictures, So Cold The River was written and directed by Paul Shoulberg and based on the book by bestselling author Michael Koryta. An Indiana native, Koryta used West Baden and French Lick as the setting for his novel, and it came full circle when the movie version of So Cold the River was filmed on location entirely at West Baden Springs Hotel and the surrounding community. Cook Group, the parent company of West Baden Springs Hotel and French Lick Springs Hotel, also collaborated on the project when the movie was filmed in January and February of 2020.
This dark supernatural thriller follows an ex-documentary filmmaker, Erica Shaw. Having her career derailed by a fatal mistake, she is hired to make a documentary about a dying multi-millionaire from an old town in Indiana. As she starts to uncover the secret horrors of her new surroundings, she soon realizes that the subject of her investigation isn’t who he claims to be.
Scroll through our movie premiere gallery to experience the So Cold The River movie premiere for yourself!
Scroll through our behind the scenes gallery to experience the making of the So Cold The River movie.
The elegant hotel setting in So Cold the River isn’t some manufactured Hollywood set. The scenes in the guest room, atrium, pool, gardens and exterior were all shot on location at West Baden Springs Hotel. The Midwestern destination is part of French Lick Resort, which includes the historic West Baden Springs Hotel and French Lick Springs Hotel, located a mile apart in neighboring towns.
Some of the movie dialogue includes real-life facts about the hotel, such as the fact it was rebuilt in 1902 after a fire destroyed the original hotel on the campus. Renovated in the mid-2000s and returned to its original glory, West Baden Springs Hotel and French Lick Resort now attract 1.1 million guests annually.
When you visit, be sure to find some of the spots at the hotel that appeared in the movie. Have a drink at Ballard’s bar. Stand under the dome and marvel at a 360-degree view of the atrium. Take a stroll in the gardens at twilight. The lavish lobby and indoor pool are sights to behold, too.
With a little luck, you might even be able to reserve the same guest room where the movie’s main character (Bethany Joy Lenz of “One Tree Hill” fame) stayed. Room 4626, aka “The Movie Room,” has been preserved as it appeared in the movie’s filming. (Learn more in our blog by clicking here.) As a bonus, this room on the hotel’s top floor has a six-story balcony view overlooking the atrium. Inquire about availability by calling (888) 936-9360. Just ask our reservations specialists about “The Movie Room” — they’ll know what you’re talking about, since this room has started getting that Hollywood buzz.
Remember that feeling of stepping into West Baden’s domed atrium for the first time? Even Hollywood was blown away by it. Hear the cast and crew share their first impressions of the hotel.Read More
West Baden Springs, Indiana, isn’t exactly Hollywood. Filming a movie entirely in small-town Indiana — and in West Baden Springs Hotel’s spacious confines — came with its share of challenges. This ambitious project involved plenty of creativity and problem-solving.Read More
A medical device company involved in making of a movie? Yep, it’s just what Cook Group does. It’s all about the positive impact on local communities for Cook, which was the driving force behind the restoration of West Baden Springs Hotel and French Lick Resort in the mid-2000s.Read More
Michael Koryta, So Cold the River Book Author & Movie Executive Producer
Michael Koryta was 8 years old when he first laid eyes on West Baden Springs Hotel, back in the day was it was near ruin. After the hotel was restored, making a movie at the grand hotel became an obsession.Read More
Pigasus Pictures, an independent film company based in Bloomington, set the stage. West Baden provided a stunning hotel backdrop better than any movie set. And an excited local community offered a support system that brought it all together. Through and through, So Cold the River is packed with small-town Hoosier pride.Read More
So Cold the River Trailer
Michael Koryta's Fascination with West Baden Springs Hotel
Behind the Scenes: "So Cold the River"
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