Marshall native appears in film, cinema to host free screening

Friday, September 16, 2016
Marshall native James Phillips, plays Bo the ranch hand (left), as he talks with Ed Gruber (played by Monty Wall), the fracking guy who instructs Bo without the ranch owner's permission in the film "My Best Friend." Soon Bo's life is at risk when he insists on telling the ranch owner. Kristen, Zack, and their horse, Stanford, risk their lives to save Bo. (Contributed Photo)

Marshall High School graduate James Phillips, class of 1984, plays a featured role in the recently released children's film, "My Best Friend." Phillips stars as Bo, a ranch hand. The Marshall Cinema will host a free screening of the film Sunday, Sept. 25 at 1 p.m. Phillips will be present to greet children, family and friends prior to the showing.

The movie was filmed on a ranch near San Luis Obispo, Calif., where Phillips lives and works for the Southern California Gas Co. The film presents issues much the same as those children face wherever they live -- moving, bullying, and making new friends, including animals.

Bo, Phillips' character, faces a problem when an outsider, Ed Gruber, convinces him to join his fracking project. Fracking is a controversial process of drilling into the ground for natural gas or oil. At first anxious to please, Bo finally insists on doing what he knows is right. Two kids, Kristin and Zach, and their horse, Stanford, risk their lives to save him.

Phillips was active in drama while in high school, at First Baptist Church, and the University of Missouri. He also performed in Seven Brides for Seven Brothers at the Lyceum Theatre in Arrow Rock and has appeared in the film "A Civil Action" and several television shows. According to a press release, Phillips hopes for a sequel to be filmed of "My Best Friend" or other possibilities to further his acting dream.

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