About this project
Oscar Wilde said "We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars." For Queen Mimi, this quote represents her truest reality.
Homeless for 25 years, Mimi's life turned around thanks to the quiet generosity of one of the world's best known comic actors, Zach Galifianakis ("The Hangover," "Between Two Ferns", "Due Date") as well as the unexpected friendship of Oscar-winning actress Renée Zellweger ("Jerry Maguire," "Bridget Jones's Diary," "Chicago").
This is the fascinating and moving story of one incredibly strong woman's survival against all odds. Defying an adulterous husband at age 55, Mimi sought a better life, and ended up on the streets of Los Angeles. Scrapping her way through life, at age 70 Mimi found her way to a Santa Monica laundromat, where she has now worked - and slept - 7-days-a-week, for 18 years.
Mimi's charm and quick wit made her many friends over the years and the affectionate moniker of "Queen of Montana Avenue". A young barista called Yaniv who walked to work each day at 5:00 a.m. caught her eye, and became a fast friend. As Yaniv learned more about Mimi's life of struggle, strength and survival, he felt compelled to share her story with the world. In Queen Mimi, we follow her journey from the street to the Hollywood stars who now help provide a better, safer life for her, providing a symbol of great hope and genuine altruism.
Queen Mimi will move you and will prove to you that hope, positivity and caring for others outweigh suffering and regret. Should you decide to have this experience accompanied by Mimi's favorite indulgence, a lemon-drop martini with extra sugar, well, Mimi would be honored.
Queen Mimi's message is that, if you are able to continue to give love to others, even when it has been taken from you, and can maintain a determination to enjoy the pleasures of life despite the place where you lay your head each night, it is never too late to turn your life around.
Our goal is to make sure that Queen Mimi's story inspires as many people as possible and we need your help to complete this tribute to her, so please pledge as much as you can. Thank you in advance! Big hug from Queen Mimi and Yaniv.
Director: Yaniv Rokah
After attending the Lee Strasberg Theatre Institute in New York, Yaniv moved to Los Angeles, and has appeared on shows like 'NCIS: Los Angeles' and 'The Beast,' Jon Avnet's series 'Kendra' and in several national commercials, including a SuperBowl spot for Verizon. Yaniv has a supporting role in Marc Forster's 2013 summer blockbuster "World War Z" starring Brad Pitt.
Producer: Elliot V. Kotek
The current Editor-in-Chief of both Beyond Cinema magazine and Celebs.com, as well as an Entertainment Correspondent for ABC Radio. Elliot has served on film festival juries from Palm Springs to Abu Dhabi, and has produced, starred in and written indie films that have been selected in dozens of festivals, received Craft Awards and a nomination for the Directors Guild of Canada's best short film of 2011.
Co-Producer and Camera: Andrew Fox
After graduating from NYU with his BFA in Film and Television Production, Andrew has worked in many different positions both on set and in the post house. He has written, produced and directed short films and music videos, as well as holding many positions in live concert video production, commercial production, and advertising for video games.
Artwork Designer: Eli Zigdon
Award-winning, Connecticut-based Creative Director and Graphic Designer, specializing in the entertainment business. Known for designing exceptionally high-end Key-Arts for films and advertising campaigns. From concept to completion, designs are approached by blending art with strategy, creativity with technology, traditions with trends, image and typography - to bring together a complete, exceptional piece of art.
Photography: Gina Conte
Risks and challenges
Fortunately, the filming phase of Queen Mimi has already been completed. The next challenge we face is the time that it will take to turn 75 hours of footage into a polished documentary that does justice to Mimi's story. To make this happen, we need to obtain the funds to hire an editor, post-production sound team, color correction professional, and composer. The main risks with hiring this team are costs, availability and timing. Because the story of Queen Mimi is so powerful, this project has already attracted a crew of qualified professionals who are ready to help out at a friendly rate as soon as the Kickstarter campaign has successfully achieved its goal. Although we are aware that setbacks may always occur in any creative process, we therefore feel confident that, once fully funded, Queen Mimi will be the inspiring film that our backers will be proud to call their own.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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