A lot of celebrities have made their way through Kalamazoo, either through Western Michigan, or Kalamazoo College. Most recently, though, it's been the producers who have been making headlines.

Showing now at KP Cinemas in downtown Kalamazoo, the film stars Zachary Quinto, and was co-produced by one of K-College's own graduates.

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KP Cinemas in Kalamazoo is one of 25 theaters across the country that is showing "He Went That Way," which was originally written as a chapter in a book published by the late Professor Emeritus Conrad Hilberry. Alumni Hugh Broder, class of 1977, took the writings, and help adapt it, and co-produce the film that came form it.

Broder discovered the writings at a Michigan Authors display at a Detroit bookstore, and inspired him to create an independent film from the story. Hilberry provided him with all of his notes to accompany the writings.

"Years after attending K, I was hanging out in a used bookstore and killing time when I went to a section called 'Michigan Authors.' I happened to notice the name 'Hillberry' on the spine of a book... I pulled the book off the shelf when I suddenly realized it was Conrad, and it wasn't poetry. It was his attempt to write about and understand these two brothers who were both serial murderers, but did not participate in each others' crimes."

Hillberry's Story of Serial Killers Larry and Danny Ranes

Professor Hilberry had the unique experience of interviewing renowned Kalamazoo serial killers Larry Lee Ranes, and Danny Ranes. The two were sentenced to prison for life for the murder of four young women. The book, that HIlberry wrote from his notes and interviews is called "Luke Karamazov," which follows the brothers lives using the pseudonyms Ralph Searl (for Larry) and Tommy Searl (for Danny).

The events in the book reflect their real lives including the woman who married both of them, and the thoughts of prison officials, their brutal childhoods, and life in prison for their crimes.

Hilberry took meticulous notes, and gave them to Broder when he inquired about the story, and in one of the interviews, he heard one of the brothers say, "You guys all ask me about the five guys I killed. Why don't you want to hear about the one I didn't kill?"

That one line is what inspired Broder to tell this story.

The Real Larry Lee and Danny Ranes/Wikipedia
The Real Larry Lee and Danny Ranes/Wikipedia

"He Went That Way" Film

The film premiered last summer at the Tribeca Film Festival, and follows real-life animal trainer Dave Pitts, played by Zachary Quinto, who was the only survivor of Larry Ranes' killing spree.

In the film, Quinto's character is named "Jim Goodwin," but is a pseudonym for Pitts.

The film follows Goodwin and "Bobby Falls" (another pseudonym for Larry Ranes), and their three-day interaction along Route 66. Goodwin is struggling to find TV work for his chimpanzee Spanky when Falls attempts to hijack and murder them.

Where Can You See the Film?

From now until Jan. 12th, KP Cinemas will be showing it at 10 a.m. daily, but starting on Jan. 12th, you can watch it through Video on Demand

Six MI Serial Killers That Are Currently Serving Life in Prison

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Gallery Credit: MDOC

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