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The Dust Factory
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The Dust Factory (2004) More at IMDbPro »

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The Dust Factory -- In this fantasy drama. Ryan is a teenager who lacks the ability to speak. One day, Ryan falls off a bridge and he finds himself transported to a strange fantasy world where he encounters his Grandpa Randolph (Armin Mueller-Stahl) and a pretty girl named Melanie (Hayden Panettiere); together, Ryan and Melanie learn to help one another with their problems, and they both discover the wisdom they can gain from elders like Grandpa Randolph.
The Dust Factory -- The Dust Factory is an adventure about the love and friendship between two teenagers who help each other through a difficult time in their lives.
The Dust Factory -- The Dust Factory is an adventure about the love and friendship between two teenagers who help each other through a difficult time in their lives.


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Popularity: ?
Down 17% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Writer (WGA):
Eric Small (written by)
View company contact information for The Dust Factory on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
22 May 2010 (Belgium) See more »
The journey of a lifetime...
The Dust Factory is an adventure about the love and friendship between two teenagers who help each other through a difficult time in their lives. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
User Reviews:
Danger-Philosophical-Requires Functioning Brain Cells See more (28 total) »


  (in credits order) (verified as complete)

Armin Mueller-Stahl ... Grandpa Randolph

Hayden Panettiere ... Melanie Lewis

Ryan Kelley ... Ryan Flynn

Kim Myers ... Angie Flynn
George De La Pena ... Ringmaster (as George De La Peña)

Michael Angarano ... Rocky Mazzelli

Peter Horton ... Lionel
Kyle Hansen ... Rennie
Ted Roisum ... Trapeze Catcher

Ayanna Berkshire ... Hope (as Ayanna Berkshire-Cruse)
Shuhe ... Sorrow

Robert Blanche ... Ryan Flynn Sr.

Directed by
Eric Small 
Writing credits
Eric Small (written by)

Produced by
Tani Cohen .... producer
Jonathan Dana .... consulting producer
Erika Lockridge .... executive producer
Eric Small .... producer
Original Music by
Luis Bacalov 
Cinematography by
Stephen M. Katz 
Film Editing by
Glenn Farr 
Casting by
Mary Jo Slater 
Production Design by
Mimi Gramatky 
Set Decoration by
Sean Kennedy 
Costume Design by
Rita Riggs 
Makeup Department
E. Larry Day .... key makeup artist
RaMona Fleetwood .... key hair stylist
Susan Sittko Schaefer .... makeup artist
Crystal Shade .... assistant makeup artist (as Crystal Rasmussen)
Amanda Williams .... key hair
Production Management
David Jeffery .... post-production supervisor
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
David Cass Jr. .... first assistant director
Dusty Dukatz .... second second assistant director
Todd C. Guzze .... second second assistant director (as Todd Guzze)
Robert Schroer .... second assistant director
Art Department
Ken Erck .... lead scenic
Sean Fong .... on-set dresser
Ellen Lepinski .... scenic gangboss
Greg McMickle .... property master
Phillip Norwood .... storyboard artist
Patric Pietrucki .... lead man
Dan Schaefer .... illustrator: previsualizations for make-up
Dan Schaefer .... storyboard artist
Sound Department
David Acord .... assistant sound editor
Christopher Barrick .... foley editor (as Chris Barrick)
Chris Barron .... digital sound transferer (as Christopher Barron)
Richard Bullock Jr. .... boom operator
Tim Burby .... digital sound transferer
Brian Chumney .... digital editorial services
Marty Church .... adr mixer
John Countryman .... digital sound transferer
Keli Craig .... sound utility
Travis Crenshaw .... foley recordist
Sean England .... machine room operator
Goffredo Gibellini .... sound engineer
Jonathan Greber .... digital sound transferer
David Hunter .... digital editorial services
Noah Katz .... digital editorial services
Thomas Knop .... adr recordist
Brian Magerkurth .... sound re-recordist
Marilyn McCoppen .... adr editor
Marilyn McCoppen .... dialogue editor
Frank 'Pepe' Merel .... foley mixer
Glenn Micallef .... sound mixer
Tom Myers .... sound designer
Tom Myers .... sound re-recording mixer
Al Nelson .... sound effects editor
Juan Peralta .... sound mix technician
Brandon Proctor .... sound mix technician
Renee Russo .... client services
Jurgen Scharpf .... sound mix technician
Daniel Sperry .... stereo sound consultant: Dolby
Dennie Thorpe .... foley artist
John Torrijos .... video services
Jana Vance .... foley artist
Gwendolyn Yates Whittle .... dialogue editor
Special Effects by
Kai Shelton .... special effects coordinator
Visual Effects by
Jeff Barnes .... visual effects executive producer: CafeFX
Timur 'Taron' Baysal .... animation director
Danny Braet .... digital animator and compositor: ComputerCafe
Domenic DiGiorgio .... animator: ComputerCafe
David Ebner .... title sequence designer
David Ebner .... visual effects supervisor
Vicki Galloway-Weimer .... visual effects producer: Cafe FX
Jeff Goldman .... digital artist: CafeFX
Victor Grant .... digital effects artist
Erik Henry .... visual effects supervisor
Ron Honn .... visual effects artist
Christopher Ivins .... digital compositing supervisor
Greg Anthony .... stunts
Steve Buckley .... stunt coordinator (as Stephen Buckley)
Richie Gaona .... trapeze choreography
Jeri Habberstad .... stunts
Brad Harrington .... stunts
Ron Otis .... stunts
Willie Page .... stunts
Anthony Pages .... stunts
Jill Pages .... stunts
Jarret Reid .... stunts
Anton von Ostendorf .... stunts
Camera and Electrical Department
Keith Bronsdon .... loader
Robin Buerki .... Steadicam operator
Robin Buerki .... camera operator
Steve Craker .... camera operator
Frank DiMarco .... still photographer
Brian Fleskes .... crane grip
Bruce 'Sarge' Fleskes .... gaffer
Josh Hicks .... electrician
Brent Lawson .... best boy grip
Brian C. Lawson .... dolly grip
Bruce Lawson .... key grip
Leonard Romie .... lighting technician
Chris Steele .... electrician
Bob Webeck .... additional first assistant camera
Casting Department
Megann Ratzow .... extras casting
John Villacorta .... casting assistant
Editorial Department
Gael Farr .... post-production assistant
Music Department
Goffredo Gibellini .... score mix engineer
Transportation Department
J. Adam Bogle .... driver
Nik Edgerton .... driver (as Nick Edgerton)
Larry Gudgel .... driver
Sparky Haleston .... driver
Philip Krysl .... driver
Brendan McKeon .... driver
David Norris .... transportation coordinator
Robert Platt .... driver
Tom Platt .... driver
William Powell .... driver (as Bill Powell)
Ernest Sanders .... driver
Joe Soleberg .... driver
Eric Solmonson .... transportation captain
Ski Szymanski .... driver
Robert Wall .... driver
Rick Wiley .... driver: camera car
Don Williams .... driver
Other crew
Melissa Booker .... special assistant: producer
Dusty Dukatz .... key set production assistant
Edwin Dunkley .... video services (as Ed Dunkley)
Colleen Emry .... first assistant accountant
Michael Fine .... key set medic
Chet Gainer .... body double: Armin Mueller-Stahl
Chet Gainer .... stand-in: Armin Mueller-Stahl
Doug Hobart .... location manager
Ron Honn .... title design
Lisa D. Kaufman .... production accountant
Mike Lane .... client services
Eva Napolean .... client services
Gordon Ng .... client services
Shandy Ray .... production assistant
Taylor Saxon .... set medic
Brian Tanke .... production coordinator
Robert Warberg .... key assistant location manager

Production CompaniesDistributorsSpecial EffectsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Rated PG for thematic elements and some scary images
Brazil:99 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Australia:PG | Germany:6 | Singapore:PG | UK:PG | USA:PG (certificate #40852)
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Continuity: When Ryan gets home after falling in the river, his hair is still wet but his clothes are dry.See more »
Grandpa Randolph:I hear the circus clowns. I hear them. They're singing.
Ryan Flynn:Will I ever see you again.
Grandpa Randolph:The colors of sunset. Warm and Cool. Always extraordinary. Always extraordinary. Live your life Ryan Flynn.
See more »
Someone Like YouSee more »


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9 out of 14 people found the following review useful.
Danger-Philosophical-Requires Functioning Brain Cells, 3 September 2006
Author: aimless-46 from Kentucky

Contrary to popular belief, films do not have to be dumbed-down for children. Much of the pleasure they get comes from puzzling out complex plot developments and recognizing subtle details. And there is actually a small sub-genre of children's films (mostly independents) that challenge young viewers to use their imaginations and film viewing skills.

"The Dust Closet" joins "An Angel for May" and "Restless Spirits" as the best recent examples of this type of film. These films have a hidden depth to their story and storytelling technique that will interest even the most sophisticated viewer-provided that they retain at least some of their childhood capacity for wonder. The weak vote count probably reflects viewers unable or unwilling to deal with a film that requires some mental energy and a few functioning brain cells.

Ryan Flynn (Ryan Kelley) is a teenager who has refused to speak since seeing his father killed at a train crossing. Ryan's father died when Ryan was nine years old, but not before he passed on a passion for astronomy to his son. But now Ryan is having trouble connecting with astronomy, symbolized by his inability to find the man in the moon his father drew for him. Like an impressionist painting, the moonscape becomes meaningless when viewed close up through his new telescope.

Ryan's family takes care of his grandfather (Mueller-Stahl), but Ryan barely knows him because he has had Alzheimer's for a number of years. Ryan hangs out with his best friend Rocky (Michael Angarano), and they communicate fine nonverbally. Rocky does not question Ryan's silence-he just accepts it. Things dramatically change one day when Ryan falls off a bridge and into a lake while roller-blading. When he surfaces Rocky is gone and everything is a little off-kilter. His grandfather is completely recovered and living alone it their house, which was his originally. They have meaningful conversations and his grandfather tries to pass on advice on how to get the most out of life. Ryan meets a pretty girl his own age named Melanie (Hayden Panettiere) who can ice skate on the surface of the lake-even though to Ryan it is summer and the lake is not frozen.

The story is basically told from Ryan's point of view and we learn along with him that this new reality is a place called "The Dust Factory". The film is an allegory (the expression by symbolic means of generalizations about human existence) about the process of living; much like "Groundhog Day". The idea is that most of us just go through the motions of living (each day is just a repeat of the day before). The themes are basically the same, the importance of having the courage to live life to the fullest and to get the most out of each day.

"Groundhog Day" illustrated this by having one day keep repeating itself for the main character . "The Dust Factory" does it by creating a symbolic place between life and death. This place is populated by all those in a coma state, their bodies are alive but their conscious mind is no longer functioning. These people are allegorical and meant to symbolize those who are not living a full life. The circus ring is the point where people finally decide whether to get on with living or to get on with dying (a line borrowed from "Shawshank Redemption").

Either choice is a valid alternative depending mostly on what stage you are at in your life (the grandfather chooses death-the teenagers choose to live for a while longer). The wrong thing is being stuck there in limbo, afraid to risk it in the circus ring. Such people are called dawdlers and symbolize the day-to-day existence of many people. But "The Dust Factory" is also a place where people can pull back and take an objective and distanced look at their lives; seeing things from this perspective allows them to recognize things (like the man in the moon) they were too close to see before (can't see the forest for the trees). Those who come back have no conscious memory of the place (they have been dreaming while in a coma) but subconsciously retain things they have learned; like the Grandfather's advice to not forget that you are on a quest for paradise, and that a fear of dying or hurting keeps you from letting go of security and really living. It takes some work to sort this film out and it probably should be viewed several times because it withholds a lot of its pleasure from the first viewing. The cast does a first-rate job. Panettiere is unexpectedly effective. In her prior film work, her extreme self-assurance overwhelms the character she is playing and works against her performances. Here she plays someone who uses a cocky attitude to hide her fear and insecurity. This multi- dimensionality connects with viewers who then relate to the protectiveness Ryan develops toward Melanie.

The movie goes out on a painfully sappy duet "Someone Like You," performed by Panettiere and Kelley (she can sing-he cannot). My advice would be to hit the off button very early in the closing credits.

Then again, what do I know? I'm only a child.

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Ryan Kelly looked really young iheartnormi
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i love this movie! Sunset91
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