MOULTRIE -- When Florida State University graduate student and film-maker John D'Arco needed a 10-meter platform diving tower for his film "Muskrat Love," he contacted Seminoles diving coach Patrick Jeffrey.

Florida State's diving facility was under renovation and unavailable, but Jeffrey suggested D'Arco contact his friend Ron Piemonte at Moss Farms about the availability of the Moose Moss Aquatic Center.

Not only was the tower available, so was the dryland training center, and D'Arco was able to shoot his complete eight-minute film at the Moultrie facility in three days.

And D'Arco and his crew were able to use several Moss Farms divers as extras, including Hannah Moore who was diving double for the film's lead character, and Ryan Helms, who was a double for a secondary character.

"I was nervous about pulling it off," said D'Arco, the film's writer and director. "But everything was so serendipitous. Ron was willing to help and a lot of things fell into place that usually don't.

"As student film makers, we have to rely on the generosity of people in the community because of limited funds. But everyone we encountered just gave and gave and gave. It was remarkable.

"I was just amazed at how helpful the community was."

D'Arco is working on his master's degree in film production at Florida State and said "Muskrat Love" is the second-to-last step before graduation.

The film is the third he has made at Florida State. He said he has worked on some 50 others. Stephen Roberts is the film's producer.

The film will premier at 7 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 10, at the Florida State University Student Life Building.

It will be shown along with 20 other graduate short films. The screening of the films will take about three hours.

D'Arco dived briefly at the collegiate level and said he believes the sport's beauty is "under-recognized."

"From a visual standpoint, diving is remarkable," he said. "I wanted to capture that on film."

The film, a comedy, is not about diving, but the lead character is a diver and the action takes place at a pool.

He said he originally planned to have just part of the film shot at a pool, but with the availability of the dryland facility, with its locker room and foam pits, he was able to bring in a crane a do the entire shoot in Moultrie.

D'Arco said a slow-motion sequence featuring Moore diving is especially effective.

Piemonte said Helms, Owen Blank and Anna Aguero also were used as extras in the film. The Moss Farms coach said he was pleased with the arrangement.

"He is really a nice guy," Piemonte said of D'Arco. "He had a great bunch of guys and girls. It was really fun to have them up here for a few days. We're fortunate they were able to use our facility and that we were able to accommodate them."

Piemonte said he was unsure whether he would be able to attend the screening, but said he expected it to be well-done.

"Even though this is a student film, it's regular film quality, just like they show in a theatre," he said. "It's feature film quality, just on a smaller scale. They came up here with two big trucks full of sound equipment and light equipment."

D'Arco said he expects the film to be well-received.

"I think it's going to be a hit," he said.

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