Nomadland True Story: Is Empire, Nevada Real? What Happened To The People

Zhao Wei’s incident nomadic land The closure of the Empire Gypsum plant in Nevada set off a spiral that raised questions about what was actually happening there. As the factories closed, Empiretown disappeared, and even its zip code disappeared without a trace.yes nomadic land Inspired by a true event? If so, what happened to the people of the empire?

nomadic land Frances McDormand stars as Fern, who decides to become a nomad after losing her job and her Imperial home. While the film ostensibly tells Fern’s story, it’s almost a documentary. McDormand is one of two Hollywood actors in the film, the other being David Strathairn. The other actors in the film are all amateurs, playing fictional versions of themselves. As such, the film blurs the line between fact and fiction and asks McDormand to first sit down and listen to these real-life people share their experiences with her.

nomadic land Engage with the real world in many ways.The movie takes place in 2012, and even references the MCU-released the Avengers that year. Nomadic art is also a very real thing, as was Bob Wells, who remains a pioneer of the nomadic lifestyle to this day. Importantly, the sudden disappearance of the Nevada Empire is also very real, as is the effect of the disappearance of the town on the people who lived there.

Empire, Nevada Nomad Land

At first, Empire Town was only mentioned in the game’s opening title card. nomadic land. Before meeting Fern, viewers are told that the American Gypsum Plant closed on January 31, 2011, after 88 years in Empire. The film notes that, by July, the Imperial postal code had ceased to be in use.Zhao provides these facts to the audience from the beginning in order to establish nomadic land As a very true story. Of course, this is not a true story. Fern’s journey and her dialogue are still scripted.but nomadic land There is indeed a certain sense of realism that is rare in similar films, and it does interpret the real experiences of the former inhabitants of the empire.

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Towards the end of the film, Fern visits her former home, walks through the barren streets, then finds her old house and explores the dilapidated interior. She wandered over to her backyard, which she had previously described as vast and open. This is still the case, although now the grass is dead and the people are gone. Fern’s return caps her off, but also serves as a stark reminder that there’s nothing left of her, or anyone else in the Empire. She then returned to the van and hit the road again.

What happened to Empire, Nevada, and its people in real life

Frances McDormand and David Strathairn in Nomadland

The real-life town of Empire is located in northwest Nevada and covers 5.1 square miles. It’s an incredibly small town, with a population of only 217 according to the 2010 census, although estimates were as high as 800 a few years ago. As a company town, all residents of the Empire work for the American Gypsum Company. Gypsum was a rare element that remained “essential” after World War II, making the American Gypsum Plant one of the few plants nationwide to survive the rapid decline of the mining industry at the time. However, the economic downturn of the late 2000s proved too taxing, causing the factory to close, which in turn closed the town.

Empire is far from any nearby towns. The nearest town is Nixon, Nevada, still more than 100 miles away.Reno is the nearest famous city, as Empire and Reno are both located in Washoe County, which may be familiar to fans of the popular comedy series Renault 911! Empire does benefit in part from tourism, as the nearby Black Rock Desert attracts leisure enthusiasts. The desert is also the site of Burning Man. Still, the empire was most dependent on its central gypsum plant, as the American Gypsum Company operated the company town. As recently as 2016, only seven residents remained, with only a convenience store and a few trailers keeping the real-life ghost town alive. In the summer of 2016, Empire Mining Co. purchased the town, only partially reopening and employing some of the remaining residents.

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Real-Life Nomad Ferns Meet in Nomadland

Frances McDormand smiling in Nomadland with mountains in the background

Fern’s Journey nomadic land All the other characters Fern meets throughout the film really illustrate the toll the recession has taken on many Americans. Actresses Linda May and Charlene Swankie play Linda and Swankie, respectively. They’re playing fictional versions of themselves, but most of what they share with Fern is completely real. For example, Swankie may not have been diagnosed with cancer as she implies in the movie, but Swankie is a real-life nomad and the survival skills she teaches Fern come entirely from her own real-life experiences .

Frances McDormand as Fern, for which she won an Oscar in 1997 fargo and again in 2018 Three billboards outside Ebbins, Missouri, the task is to listen to the voices of those around you.McDormand’s performance was one of the best in 2020, but her presence does threaten to disrupt the foundations nomadic land sometimes. McDormand is inescapable as an actor, while almost everyone else in the film is a true nomad.McDormand offers enough authenticity and compassion to warrant her participation, but nomadic land It’s certainly at its strongest when it’s about the real-life struggles of real-life nomads like Linda and Swanky.

‘Nomadland’ puts post-recession America and nomads in perspective

Although it has been more than a decade since the Great Recession wreaked havoc on many Americans, so far there has been little attempt to historicize it.similar movies big short The crisis has been explored from a financial perspective, but little effort has been made to document the experience of ordinary Americans, and Zhao seems to understand that.and nomadic landZhao is correcting course, highlighting the real struggles of nomads in real life after the Great Recession. nomadic land Recognizing the growing scale of the recession’s impact, feel the same sympathy for dilapidated movie theaters as for the thousands of unemployed Americans.

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Zhao also expertly navigates the disappearance of small towns like Nevada Empire. On the one hand, the loss of the empire was devastating for all the families who had built lives there. But Zhao also wisely questions the notion of a company city. nomadic land Willing to ask why America would allow an entire town to be run by one company, or why the government would allow an entire town to be wiped off the map simply because a company can no longer operate there. Zhao’s film is sympathetic but also angry, aware of its characters’ frustrations.As the Great Recession recedes further, movies like this nomadic land will only become more important, as they have the ability to highlight how one of the most economically destructive events in American history continued to rear its ugly head for decades to come.

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