Short treatment of the film:
Life is West follows PRYOR, 14 and his sister, TAYLOR, 8, in this story of survival. The two children fight to reunite with their father after a devastating tornado. As they leave their home for food, two looters break in. A nearby police officer sees them and stops. Inside the house, the thieves and officer fight. The officer and one thief get knocked out. Thinking of himself and his sister, Pryor grabs one of the thieves’ gun and shoots. Terrified, the children leave, taking their prized trumpet and a family photo before venturing out to find their father.
It’s evening as the kids walk along a railroad track near their house. They find an open freight train car, where they meet LYRIC and MILES inside. Scared, Pryor pulls out the pistol but is comforted by the fact that the Miles calmly plays his guitar. Lyric and Miles tell their stories and how they came to be on the train to gain the kids’ trust. The four of them have decided that they need to go in the same direction, toward an evacuation center, and will stay together.
So why do we need money to make this short film? We need to make the sets and the situation look real first of all. That won't be easy but it won't be too difficult with all of the furniture and household things we have between all of us. Props surely can't cost much I hear you thinking, well, they can do, so can making a nice house look destroyed. In addition to the sets, we need to keep the crew happy because a happy crew means a good quality final product. To keep them happy, that means providing food and paying their gas/transport costs! These can really add up and our goal of $2000 will be used completely over the 4 days we plan to shoot.
All of the locations are fairly close together and will look great but we do need a financial cushion to make this a reality. I understand completely that this is a recession and it is hitting everybody, myself and the filmmaking community included. If you have any money to spare, it will be well-spent and I will make sure you will not regret it.
Our goals for this film:
We will shoot Life is West in Minnesota in June 2012. The producers, Fiona and Evan, are both from Minnesota. I, Fiona, will also be directing this film. We know the area and the local filmmaking community. Minnesota is particularly suitable due to its own susceptibility to natural disasters. We have not decided where editing will take place, most likely London, where Fiona lives. Life is West will be completed by October 2012 and start off the festival circuit with the London Short Film Festival in January 2013.
Why you should support this project:
I believe narrative films can help bring about social changes, even if they are just short films. We hope to develop Life is West into a feature-length film by 2015. The feature will be set in the gulf region of the United States following the devastation of Hurricane Katrina. The aim of Life is West is to introduce us to Pryor, Taylor, Lyric, Miles and their circumstances. After entering the following festivals, we will seek out investment and possibly a studio backing for the feature. 2015 is the 10th year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina and we hope Life is West will inspire people to help prevent the atrocities of Katrina from ever happening again.
Both versions present homelessness, music education, and disaster relief as issues that I feel our society should address more strongly. The film is not just a depiction of a day in the life of two children as they struggle to survive, but also a commentary on problems any one of us could face without warning.
About me, Fiona, producer.
Well, I am 22 years old and have always wanted to work in film. I have made a few small shorts over the years but have muscled up the courage to do one with a budget! Money comes naturally to me being Scottish and having studied economics for 4 years. I am an extremely competent producer who can make things happen. I have many projects and business ventures in the pipeline to follow this one and will not stop working until my goals are met. Being new to the industry though, that means I need your help and I have faith that through crowd-funding (when many people contribute to something) this project, myself, Evan, and Cassie can all get the jump start that our careers need.
FYI: The title may change, we will update you as soon as it may happen.