The only real Sallie House movie was the The Heartland Ghost movie created by Paramount and released October 27, 2002.
Over the years, in email correspondence, in person, and via interviews on our experiences, we have often been asked how close to the truth was the Heartland Ghost movie. I have to say that without a doubt, it is probably the one televised representation that comes the closest to a factual representation and one that Tony and I felt came closest to our experiences.
Although I think I allowed him access to my journal regarding the activity we had had, the writer for this movie only spent 3-4 hours in our living room, trying to capture the essence of our experience. Compared to the amount of time that others in the media profession have spent with us, only to produce something less than favorable, Tony and I were very impressed with it.
One has to realize that there is usually a lot of information available to put into a movie like this (or even in a 1 hour television show, for that matter). With that said, some experiences have to be left out because there is really no way to fit 3 years of activity into 2 hours. The key is to choose and present the right mix of experiences to get the fundamental nature of the haunting to the viewers without allowing the creative development distort the facts along the way.
Other than working with Sightings, this was our first media experience, We were 1st approached by Paramount for a big screen theater movie version. Amongst other things, we worried about how we and the facts would be represented. We turned them down for several months, hesitating because we did not want creative liberty becoming factual and distorting the facts more than the rumors already had.
The problem is that people see these things on television and ask us all the time, “did that really happen?” The more we have to say, “no, not really”, the more we, our story and our experiences become diminished and unbelievable. So with that said, it should be noted that out of all the visual media out there, this movie was by far the best depiction of the facts.
It told of the small things, like the toys that moved, the electronics and electrical maladies. It showed how innocent the activities began and why our concern grew as time went on. The movie did make the viewer feel as if the experiences took place over a relatively sort period of time when in fact it was almost two years, but they did try to depict how Tony’s naturally great disposition was being negatively effected over time. Hateful feelings, a hard time sleeping, strange dreams, physical attacks etc…
Of course the back story had to be made up because we had no idea what the real cause of the haunting was. Although there was an adult spirit in the house and of which Tony and I experienced, we did not know who she was or why she remained in the house. The suggestion that she was possibly a slave if the Dr. who lived in the house, and that Sallie was in fact the illegitimate child produced by that relationship, was only a theory.
In addition, and although there have been a few small fires in the home, the house did not go up in flames as the movie portrayed. There is however, seemingly caught in more recent investigation photographs, signs of fire damage on rafters in the attic crawl space. If there was a fire in this home that did that much damage it was well before modern occupants and memory, as no one has been able to recall such a significant fire.
Although over the years, we have gained a better perception of this haunting,it has been hard to for us and others to fully understand all aspects. It remains mysterious in nature, a spectacle of growing interests and seemingly very well obscured in the past, all of which, do not lend to easily, concretely or completely representing it to the public.
The following links will open in a new window and are provided as a courtesy and do not necessarily have preferred relevance over any other informative sites on the internet.
Tell us what you thought of the movie. We know it wasn’t theater quality, but did you get a good feel of our experiences?
Informative links on the movie:
Heartland Ghost Movie – an overview of the movie noting the movie rating, director, writer, cast, plot outline and more.
Heartland Ghost Movie review by Upcomingdiscs.com
Heartland Ghost Movie Reviews, DVD sale and more at RottenTomatoes.com
Available to rent:
on NETFLIX and perhaps to borrow through your local library
Available for Sale:
(please know that neither this website nor the Pickmans make any money or royalties on DVD sales from any of these or any other sites)
Buy the movie at Amazon.com
Buy the movie for about $16 at CDUniverse.com
Buy the movie from a range of various sellers