The Falls: A Testament of Love
"The Falls: A Testament of Love" is the story of RJ and Chris, two former Mormon missionaries that fell in love on their mission.
THE FALLS, released in December of 2012, is about two 20 year old Mormon missionaries who fall in love on their mission. It's a film about love, faith, and finding strength within yourself. It shows that honoring ourselves and being honest with the people in one's life can be a difficult path. The film was met with incredible response; it screened in over 17 film festivals around the world and was picked up for distribution by Breaking Glass Pictures. The Falls has touched the hearts of many who have had experiences such as RJ and Chris, not only former members of the LDS church, but other denominations, straight and LGBT audiences alike. It has been translated into German and French and is currently being distributed in countries where those languages are spoken. The Falls is available on Netflix, Blockbuster, Amazon, TLA, and many other vendors online.
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THE FALLS: A TESTAMENT OF LOVE, is a continuation of this story. It begins with RJ Smith and Chris Merrill five years after their mission in Clackamas Falls, Oregon. When an unexpected event occurs, the two young men find themselves once again thrust into one another's lives. As old feelings begin to surface they once again face difficult choices. While fulfilling their desire to be together, RJ and Chris risk hurting the ones they care about as they embark on a spiritual journey to discover love, freedom and most of all, happiness. Production begins May 15th, 2013. Very soon!
With a crew of only four people, we were able to finish the THE FALLS in 17 days with a budget under 7k. We did this by taking a simple approach to everything. The wardrobe was simple, two young men in suits they wore everyday, and a revolving array of ties. Their dorm, where much of the film was shot, was an empty studio in a friend's apartment complex that we rented for a month. The local Unitarian Church asked for a video about their congregation in exchange for access to shoot in their chapel. Our friends let us film in their homes, borrow their cars, bikes, and many of the props in the film to tell this story. Ultimately, THE FALLS was made possible through the collaborative efforts of people who cared about the film and its message.
For THE FALLS: A TESTAMENT OF LOVE, We want to bring forth our best and create an even more powerful experience for audiences. We are shooting the majority of the film in Portland, Oregon and the surrounding area. Nick Ferrucci and Benjamin Farmer are back again as RJ and Chris. Also returning are Harold Phillips, Audrey Walker and Brian Allard as Rodney. And we have strong cast of newcomers to the cast as well with Mercedes Rose, Hannah Barefoot, and Bruce Jennings among others. We are shooting with the RED ONE, and have assembled an amazing crew of passionate industry professionals to guide us through principal photography.
Why we're making it
When THE FALLS was picked up for distribution and then released in December 2012, I began to speak with members of Affirmation and other LGBT organizations to discover the coming out stories of many who have had experiences like RJ and Chris in THE FALLS. Eventually the story for THE FALLS: A TESTAMENT OF LOVE, was formed from the hearts and minds of those who experienced it. The challenges our lead characters face resonate some unified truths about the experiences of individuals who have felt opposition from their community and faith because of who they are.
Risks and challenges
As with many indie films, budget and time seem to be the most recurring obstacles. We do not yet have the budget to successfully fund production and post-production for THE FALLS: A TESTAMENT OF LOVE. Without proper funding it could once again take us the 2.5 years or longer to complete this project. If we were able to make a great film for 7K, imagine what we could do with 15 or 20. I would like to release this film by November 2013 and deliver to audiences the conclusion of the story of RJ Smith and Chris Merrill.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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