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Indie thriller ‘Russian Doll’ films in Framingham and Concord

Aly Trasher in the middle of the crew filming a scene in “Russian Doll.”
Fritz Ceriales
Aly Trasher in the middle of the crew filming a scene in “Russian Doll.”

Just miles from where Paul Feig has been directing the big-budget reboot of “Ghostbusters,” a smaller local film has been in the works, the tiny thriller “Russian Doll.”

“We are the lowest of the low budget,” said executive producer Suzanne Brockmann. “There’s ‘Ghostbusters’ . . . and then there’s ‘Russian Doll,’ ” she said with a laugh.

This is the second indie film for best-selling romance author Brockmann, who splits her time between Framingham and Sarasota, Fla. A few years ago, Brockmann, her husband, writer Ed Gaffney, and their son, Jason Gaffney, decided to make the romantic comedy “The Perfect Wedding.” Brockmann said it became important to her storytelling family to make a movie with gay characters who weren’t struggling to come out of the closet. Jason specifically wanted to see more characters like himself.

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“Among friends and family, he was really safe to be who he was,” Brockmann said of her son. The movie was made in Florida and was screened by the Sarasota Film Festival.

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The family’s new project — a crime story thought up by Ed Gaffney — is about a detective who tries to solve a case while mourning the death of her wife. The starring role went to Brockmann’s daughter, Melanie Brockmann Gaffney, who has an acting background (she once appeared in an educational film series with Sudbury-raised “Captain America” star Chris Evans). Also in the “Russian Doll” cast is “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” actress Kristine Sutherland, who plays the detective’s mother.

Film production runs through July 16. Locations include Angry Ham’s Garage in Framingham, and the Performing Arts Center at 51 Walden in Concord, where the crew will film this weekend. Brockmann says locals who want to be extras in the shoot should e-mail Suzannebrockmann@aol.com.

Brockmann’s writing projects are also a family affair. Her next book, the October release “Wild Sky,” is the second installment of a young adult series that she writes with her daughter.