The man behind Docville Wild West Town opens up on success, Ben Affleck and his authentic man cave.
It’s one of those hidden gems that is so prominent, yet is still unknown to many residents in the surrounding area. Nostalgia floods within the aged architecture, and authenticity gleams from the intricately-placed decor. It’s as though a rush of wind instantly sweeps you off your feet, thrusting you into a full-tilt whirlwind of a hazy western scene.
It’s a crisp November evening, and Steve “Doc” Holliday leads the way into a newly-embellished living room within the house. Worn artifacts and antique chairs fill the space, while a noticeably fierce wolf-skin rug (complete with an angered-looking head) lies proudly amongst the wooden floor. He takes a seat in a polished wo oden chair with pink velvet cushioning, as if to get comfortable, yet not altogether relaxed. As a man of business, it’s clear that this most likely the only down-time he has had all day, if you dare to even call it that.
Nestled in the quaint village of Newcastle, Ontario, Docville has undeniably become something much more colossal than Doc initially anticipated. Early after he invested in the property, a woman working for the film board approached him with invitation that would soon jumpstart the success of the wild west town. “I originally started fixing the place up for my own personal enjoyment. When we realized that the filming industry was taking notice, then that just made [it] more fun,” he says. After being featured in the Durham Film Guide, people quickly began to take notice and the fascination grew.
The rich history and roots of the wild west are what led Doc to the endless development and creation of the present-day Docville. He credits the prominence of the wild-west theme growing up as a child to be the source of his inspiration, a time when Clint Eastwood and cowboy movies thrived. “The Rifle Man, Gunsmoke, Maverick. The dime novels that made the fantasy of the wild west come to life,” he shares. Though the times have certainly changed, people’s interest in the western world has prevailed, making Docville a prime source of entertainment for these peoples’ curiosities.
“The wild west is still alive,” Doc exclaims. From movie shoots to a recent Russian magazine spread, Docville has gained the attention of eager onlookers internationally. Back in 2006, a hollywood film crew utilized Docville and its authentic buildings as the set to many scenes in the big-screen film Hollywoodland, which starred Ben Affleck. More recent events include numerous charity bike rally’s and a television documentary airing in North America, along with the future filming for the television series Man Caves. Just as the wild west never sleeps, it’s quite apparent that Docville has been a non-stop power drive of filming, tourism and various events throughout the years.
When the idea of down-time between business, work life and his personal music career is mentioned, Doc laughs hastily, as if the mere concept of unwinding is unheard of. Maintaining a large property of multiple buildings is tedious and surely time-consuming. “When work needs to be done, we tackle it,” he says of himself and a few co-working hands. “If I get to sit in front of a t.v. set for a couple hours, that would be real down-time.”
With dedication and hard work come reward and great success. Docville has not only been the host to many productions and events, but it is also home to the friends and memories that have shaped a community brimming of everlasting spirit, endless entertainment, and those who share a unique passion for the wild, wild west.
Docville is located in the village of Newcastle, Ontario, Canada. For more information, visit http://docvillemovieset.com