David Hutchings October 22, Knebel may have his feet in the Big Apple, but his mind is back home in Dunkerton, Iowa. Hauling feed seems a darn sight preferable to squeezing into a monkey suit, swallowing that fancy big-city cooking and squinting through the strobes that greet his appearance at the opening of the prestigious New York Film Festival.
Last October Levi was just a typical high school senior when he heard that Lange and Shepard were coming to town to make a movie about farmers. He figured he might get a job driving some of the farm equipment. As ever Levi was laconic. Levi had grown to admire his boss. But there was a hitch.
When they arrived, their three-room suite had been reserved by Walter Mondale, who was in N. So the Iowans had to cool their heels in another room for several hours until the Mondale suite was free. When they did see their new spread, they almost fell over.
In the limo on the way to the theater with actor Wilford Brimley, who plays his crusty granddad in Country, Levi learns firsthand how to deal with newfound stardom. Those people will swarm over you like flies on a dung pile. Few of the guests bother to interrogate Jane Knebel and her son, who know more about that subject simply because it has been a part of their lives for as long as either of them can remember.
Though the Knebels live in a three-bedroom ranch house in Dunkerton pop. Jane has a part-time job as a classroom supervisor and her husband is an ironworker when jobs are available. It happens all the time where we live. Jane confides that he tried to take a walk in Central Park yesterday, but came right back. Levi is clearly eager to be gone. Home in Dunkerton, the new star finally begins to enjoy his success. Since last December Levi has put 20, miles on it.
With Country a hit and Levi winning raves, he has signed up with a manager in New York, but so far no takers. If it comes, it comes.