Just one day before the official opening day of the Palm Springs International Film Festival, the festival presented the premiere of "Do It or Die," a film based on a true story about a local kidnapping story from 1979. The film was made completely in the Palm Springs area with actress Denise DuBarry playing the lead role while also producing the film.
“Do It or Die,” is based on a true story: the brutal kidnapping of Palm Springs socialite and philanthropist Elaine Chaddick (Denise DuBarry) in 1979. A fast-paced, action and psychological thriller, Elaine fights to stay alive out in the hot desert, using all her people skills to prevent her sociopathic kidnapper Bobby Ray Robbins from killing her – and the FBI agent assigned to her case racing against the clock to find her and bring down her kidnapper. The story was the basis for a book, “Night of the Full Moon,” by former FBI agent Herb Clough, the detective who cracked the real-life case.
Stars from the film arrived early to be photographed by the press. Director Jorn H. Winther was among the stars.
Star and Producer Denise DuBarry had a busy acting career in the 1970’s, but in the 1980’s she wanted more and she started producing – which led her to producing a slew of how-to-videos. Her new gig was very lucrative and gave her time to raise her family as well.
DuBarry is a member of the Palm Springs Women in Film and Television, which is an entity that promotes women in the entertainment industry. Included in the membership was also Jorn H. Winther, who among his many credits directed the Frost/Nixon interviews.
Winther promised Herb Clough (the real-life FBI agent that help bring Elaine Chaddick back to safety) on his death bed that he would bring the story to film.
Winther tapped DuBarry to produce and with a minuscule budget, “Do It or Die,” finally was filmed in 2016. DuBarry credits many local citizens for providing locations and props (including a helicopter) to help the film come to life.
After the screening at the Annenberg Theatre tonight, the cast and crew celebrated their accomplishment at the after party held at the Rivera Hotel, which was also used as a location for a part of the film.