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Burlington County  |  Camden County  |  Gloucester County

New flick gets props from Mullica Hill Shop

RON KARAFIN/Courier-Post
Steve Lipman of Pilesgrove is the proprietor of the Yellow Garage Antique Shop in Mullica Hill. They recently rented and sold some antiques to be used in the movie `The Village' that will be released in August.

Thursday, January 22, 2004

Courier-Post Staff
The man who brought America talking ghosts in The Sixth Sense and unfriendly aliens in Signs is at it again.

M. Night Shyamalan, a Philadelphia-area native well-known for setting and shooting films in the region, is at work on a 19th-century horror tale about a small village beset by mythical creatures in the woods around it.

Aptly titled The Village, the film has a strong local connection - many of the props were bought or rented in Gloucester County's antiques capital, Mullica Hill.

Steve Lipman, co-owner of The Yellow Garage, 66 S. Main St., said buyers for Shyamalan's production company bought or rented thousands of dollars worth of antiques.

Items bought and rented

"In this movie alone there are probably 60 to 75 items, everything from cupboards and tables to silver, cutlery and wall boxes," Lipman said.

Lipman said he didn't visit the set - somewhere in the vicinity of Chadds Ford, Pa. - but understood that the village itself was to be built from scratch and torn down at the end of filming.

For this film - not his first - Lipman said items were rented for about three and a half months.

Rent on items valued at $1,000 or more was 10 percent of their value per month and items worth less than $1,000 rented for 15 percent of their value per month, Lipman said.

The real value

But Lipman said the real value is in what an association to a major motion picture can do for antiques.

"It gives what we call provenance, the history of the piece," Lipman explained. "If you have a piece of furniture that was in the White House when Lincoln was there, that would be provenance."

Items from The Village set, now returned to his store, were tagged as having been part of the movie, Lipman said. The movie stars Adrien Brody, William Hurt and Sigourney Weaver.

Other props sold or rented

The Yellow Garage has also sold or rented props for Beloved, starring Oprah Winfrey, What Lies Beneath, starring Harrison Ford and Michelle Pfeiffer, and Signs, with Mel Gibson.

Lipman said a Washington Township woman purchased a pie safe from him that had been in the home of Gibson's character in Signs.

"She tells everybody it's Mel Gibson's pie safe," he said.

Browsing in The Yellow Garage last week, Sara Harper of Haddon Township said she had no idea some of the goods there shared scenes with Tinseltown idols.

"Oh, this is unbelievable," she exclaimed.

You can believe it, Lipman said.

"It's kind of like a feather in our cap. Everyone loves movies. There's an excitement and a mystique about movies that we're very glad to be a part of."

Reach Steve Levine at (856) 251-3346 or

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