Join Us for a Strange Trip
We invite you to help us make MANSON FAMILY VACATION, a story about two brothers who embark on a strange sightseeing tour of crime scenes, hideouts & jailhouses -- all related to the notorious Manson Family. The film will explore the hero worship of Charles Manson, the roots of fanaticism & the importance of family.
The project is a collaboration between Jay Duplass (CYRUS; JEFF, WHO LIVES AT HOME), Linas Phillips (BASS ACKWARDS) & J. Davis (KEVIN; SOUNDTRACKER): three filmmakers who have experience making low-budget movies that play at top festivals around the world, in theaters and on Netflix.
Nick Morgan is a successful lawyer who’s devoted to his wife and young son. His adopted brother Conrad is a wayward soul who shows up in Los Angeles unannounced. Although the brothers have never gotten along too well, Nick decides to show his brother around town. But as it turns out, there’s only one thing Conrad wants to do in LA: visit the Manson murder sites. So, the brothers drive all over town & out to the desert to discover the secrets of The Manson Family and themselves.
MFV is a story about people who feel lost: lost in society, and in their families, and in their jobs. It's about the strange ways we go about seeking connection in a complex world. And the ways we can ultimately redeem ourselves.
Why We Need You
We are micro-budget. Which basically means that we're making this movie as cheaply as is humanly possible. But some costs are unavoidable. We need money for basic film costs (camera rentals, lighting equipment, travel costs, post-production) and basic human needs (food, water & shelter).
This is a passion project for the three of us. But it's one that will live or die by this Kickstarter campaign. We truly can't do this without you. So, please scroll down to read more about us, and if you can donate or even just share our link with friends, we'll be forever grateful. Thanks!
J. Davis has worked as a film editor for over a decade. Most recently, he served as editor & co-writer on Jay Duplass' KEVIN, which premiered at the South By Southwest Film Festival. Previous to that, J. acted as editor, associate producer & music supervisor on Nick Sherman's SOUNDTRACKER. J. also served as Editorial Consultant on I AM A SEX ADDICT, helping acclaimed filmmaker Caveh Zahedi fine-cut his dramatic feature about sex addiction.
Currently, J. works as post-production supervisor at a corporate video house, hiring editors & overseeing all aspects of post-production. The screenplay for MANSON FAMILY VACATION is his second. His first script was honored by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences as a semi-finalist in the Nicholl Screenplay Competition.
Jay is a trailblazing independent filmmaker. His directorial work includes such films as CYRUS, BAGHEAD, and JEFF, WHO LIVES AT HOME. He's also worked as producer on such features as SAFETY NOT GUARANTEED and LOVERS OF HATE.
In 2005, Jay and his brother Mark wrote & directed their first micro-budget feature THE PUFFY CHAIR, which played at the Sundance Film Festival & won the Audience Award at South By Southwest. Since then, Jay has divided his time between Hollywood studio projects & low-budget indies. Jay’s films have screened at every major film festival in the US and he has established a track record of producing profitable films. He is currently producing and directing TOGETHERNESS, a TV pilot for HBO.
As an actor, Jay was recently featured on THE MINDY PROJECT. He's also had roles in Joe Swanberg's NIGHTS & WEEKENDS & the compendium film SLACKER 2011. For the role of Nick, Jay will bring to the table his experiences with brotherly love and his incredible fear of all things Manson.
Linas is an accomplished actor, writer & director. His most recent movie BASS ACKWARDS which he directed and starred in, premiered at Sundance and was picked up for distribution by IFC. His earlier work includes GREAT SPEECHES FROM A DYING WORLD, and WALKING TO WERNER, which documents his on-foot journey from Seattle to Los Angeles to meet famed director Werner Herzog.
In preparation for his role as Conrad, Linas has spent hundreds of hours plowing through the wide array of books, music & videos about The Manson Family.
Sean is an outstanding camerman who got his start with renowned indie director Aaron Katz, working on both DANCE PARTY USA and COLD WEATHER. His most recent film as DP, THIS IS MARTIN BONNER, won the Audience Award for Best of Next at this year's Sundance Film Festival. Sean’s favorite book is HELTER SKELTER.
Stephen is the co-founder of Lucky Hat Entertainment, which has produced such acclaimed films as IF A TREE FALLS: A STORY OF THE EARTH LIBERATION FRONT, 2012 Academy Award nominee for Best Documentary Feature; THE ORDER OF MYTHS, winner of a 2009 Peabody Award; GOODBYE SOLO, named one of the top 10 films of 2009 by Roger Ebert; and INFORMANT, winner of the 2012 Grand Jury Prize at DOC NYC.
Ali is an exceptional up-and-coming producer. Since graduating from the film program at USC, she's produced a number of narrative films & music videos, as well as three documentaries. Her most recent production ULTIMATE ULTIMATE, a mockumentary about the electronic music scene, was directed by Jack Henry Robbins & executive produced by Tim Robbins.
Josh is a director and producer who started working with the Duplass Brothers on Jay's debut documentary KEVIN. He then produced the Brothers' THE DO-DECA-PENTATHLON, and Jason Tippet and Elizabeth Mims' debut doc ONLY THE YOUNG, which won top honors at Silverdocs and AFI Fest. As director, his documentary work has played at HotDocs, and will be included in the forthcoming globally crowdsourced ONE DAY ON EARTH.
J.M. Logan started working in movies at the age of twelve. He's had experience doing just about every job in film at one point or another (special effects, pyrotechnics, physical effects, editing, sound deign, visual effects, photography & directing). Recently, he's made contributions to CEDAR RAPIDS, STOKER, RUBY SPARKS, SOUND OF MY VOICE and THE WAY, WAY BACK.
Nick studied philosophy in Colorado before earning an MFA in Film Production from Chapman University. He previously partnered with J. Davis on the feature documentary SOUNDTRACKER, which he produced & directed & screened at HotDocs. He has worked as an editor for 11 years. His pieces have appeared on ESPN, CBS & Outside TV.
Risks and challenges
Independent filmmaking is never easy, and this is why we've brought on veteran producers with experience at all budget levels, ranging from shoestring to the studio level. Every day of filming will bring some surprise or another, and I'm so lucky to have a team who in all their past work, simply put, have gotten the job done. And seen their projects through to top festivals, television, movie theaters, and Netflix. I couldn't do this without them.
Some important legal information:
· Please read the rewards carefully to determine those which are location or date specific. Travel, lodging and transportation are not included.
· Must be over 18 or accompanied by a parent or legal guardian to attend all events.
· Some rewards may require that you sign a Non-Disclosure Agreement upon your arrival.