#tbt - "Hillbilly Elegy" movie crew including Director Ron Howard and Actress Glenn Close film scenes on Middletown street
Middletown, Ohio, experienced a “ThrowBack” in real time this week when a movie crew literally turned an older house on Harrison Street into a set for “Hillbilly Elegy,” the film version of the moving memoir by former Middletonian J.D. Vance.
The house and impressive cast will be featured in the Netflix movie version of Vance’s captivating recollection of growing up in Middletown and the family issues that challenge many persons of Kentucky-Appalachian heritage.
Among those spotted at the movie set were Director Ron Howard and actress Glenn Close, who portrays Vance’s grandmother.
Like the book, the movie version of “Hillbilly Elegy” follows Vance’s childhood here. Raised by his grandparents, Vance recalls the positive influence of his loving, yet disciplinarian grandmother, affectionately known as “Mamaw" (pictured above with a young J.D.).* Above right and below right are photos of Glenn Close, who portrays “Mamaw” in the film. Below left is a photo of Director Ron Howard on set. The photos of Close in character and Howard can be found on the website of the Journal-News.
Mamaw’s strong influence helped shaped Vance’s future – as a 2003 graduate of Middletown High School (left), a United States Marine, a veteran of the Iraq War, a graduate of Ohio State University and Yale Law School, a venture capitalist, creator of a nonprofit organization dedicated to eradicating the opioid epidemic and New York Times best-selling author.
According to a February 2019 article in on the “Columbus Monthly” website, Vance, his wife and young son have moved to the East Walnut Hills neighborhood of Cincinnati.
“Ohio Women’s History” blog which includes the photo of young JD with the real “Mamaw”:
“J.D. Vance Moves To Cincinnati” February 1, 2019, Columbus Monthly:
Photos of the “Hillbilly Elegy” movie crew at the Harrison Street house in Middletown were taken Tuesday, August 6, 2019, by MidPointe Library staff.
The on-set photos of Ron Howard in director mode and Glenn Close in character are from the Journal News website.
J.D. Vance’s graduation photo can be found in the 2003 Middletown High School Optimist yearbook. Copies of the Optimist are available for viewing in the Ohio Room at MidPointe Library’s Middletown location. They can also be viewed online via MidPointe’s Digital Archives :
www.midpointelibrary.org > eLibrary > Digital Archives > The Optimist Middletown City School District High School Yearbooks