$6,301
pledged of $20,000pledged of $20,000 goal
98
backers
0seconds to go
Funding Unsuccessful
The project's funding goal was not reached on Sun, December 31 2017 7:43 PM UTC +00:00
Michelle HernandezBy Michelle Hernandez
First created
Michelle HernandezBy Michelle Hernandez
First created
$6,301
pledged of $20,000pledged of $20,000 goal
98
backers
0seconds to go
Funding Unsuccessful
The project's funding goal was not reached on Sun, December 31 2017 7:43 PM UTC +00:00

About

Have you ever heard of the Native boarding school experience? Where Native children were ripped from there homes and forced to assimilate into western culture. There many children faced sexual, physical and verbal abuse.

Douk is film that touches on these subjects.

Douk

Douk is a historical fiction drama that takes place in 1910. It tells the story of a young Native girl, Irene, who deals with a difficult reality of her and her sister being taken away from their family and sent to boarding school, where they will be assimilated into the western culture. This means that once this happens, they will no longer be able to practice their language, culture, and traditions. In order to prevent this from becoming a true actuality, Irene’s parents hatch a plan to save them.

 

Inspiration for this Story

This project was inspired by not only my great grandmother, who experienced these types of boarding schools, but other tribal elders’ stories in my community. For many years this has been a topic that has a hidden subject from general discussion in the United States. This is a subject that needs to be explored and discussed by the general public.

The Team

Writer/Director - Michelle Hernandez
Writer/Director - Michelle Hernandez

Michelle Hernandez is a Native American filmmaker and photographer. She is a Wiyot tribal member and grew up on the Table Bluff Reservation. She is currently pursuing her Masters in Film and Electronic Media at American University in Washington, D.C. She received her B.A. at Humboldt State in both Film and Native American Studies. Many of her work focuses on the importance of culture, traditions, and identity, as well as dealing with Native American subjects. With her work she wants to give voice to stories that help breakdown stereotypes. 

Producer - Courtney Brooks
Producer - Courtney Brooks

Courtney Brooks is a photojournalist, filmmaker, and scriptwriter who enjoys creating and watching films that bring awareness to true stories. Courtney has a BS in Biology from Spelman College and a MA in film and Video from American University. She believes that through film you can take any issue and make it feel more personal to those who may not be directly affected by it. She believes that if you can get people to see someone else's perspective, you can get them to care and get involved. That is the power of filmmaking for her and why she has dedicated her passion for film and photography to telling the stories that bring awareness, create conversation, action, and change. Courtney's future plans involve directing for documentaries as well as continuing her work as a photojournalist and scriptwriter.

Producer - Carolyn Silvernail
Producer - Carolyn Silvernail

Carolyn Silvernail is a photographer, filmmaker, and musician. Born in Germany as an Air Force brat, Carolyn is now a military wife of an Army officer. Having lived in various countries and states in the US, she currently lives in the DC area with her husband and two cats. Carolyn has her BA in music performance from Millikin University, her BA in filmmaking from New Mexico State University, and an MS in Exercise Science and Health Promotion from California University of Pennsylvania. At present, she is working on completing her MFA degree in Filmmaking at American University with her thesis film, Before I Wake. Her future plans involve directing and working as a DP in the film industry as well as continuing her work as a photographer and digital artist. See some of Carolyn's artwork here

Assistant to Producer/Editor - Richard Wenzler
Assistant to Producer/Editor - Richard Wenzler

Richie Wenzler is a Master of Fine Arts Candidate for Film and Electronic Media at American University. He’s finishing up on his thesis project Insomnia Nights. In the fall of 2012, Richie earned a B.A. Degree in both Telecommunications and Communications & Culture at Indiana University. Currently, Richie works as a film reviewer for Picture Lock. He has also appeared on the Picture Lock radio show and Arlington in the Morning on WERA FM. Most recently, Richie was a freelance editor for ACE Media and assisted on several projects of theirs. One of his works has been featured on sites including Sports Spectrum and ESPN. In addition, Richie has been involved in various film productions, and loves to collaborate with others. A lifelong fan of film, Richie hopes he can infect his energy of film to others.  

Ross Godwin
Ross Godwin

Ross Godwin is an award-winning filmmaker from Washington, DC, and an MFA graduate of American University. A writer, director, and cinematographer, Ross has worked on a variety of different projects across genres and across the globe; from Alaska, to Czech Republic, from Mexico to the Isle of Saba, and everywhere in between. His directorial debut, What You Sow, went on to win best student short at the Indie Gathering Film festival, while other projects, such as Forgotten River and Stow Away were official selections at the Environmental Film Festival and Escape Velocity respectively. Among his most current projects is the short film, Riverment, which was a successful Kickstarter project that is now in its completion stages. 

Zan Gillies
Zan Gillies

Zan attended the College of William & Mary, graduating with a Film Studies degree in 2009. He was one of twelve screenwriters selected for a mentorship in The Writers Store's Industry Insider contest in 2011, and was a semi-finalist for the Academy Nicholl Fellowship in 2016. He has worked as a cinematographer on two feature films and roughly a dozen shorts, and has written and directed three short films. He is currently finishing up his Masters of Fine Arts degree in film at American University.

Why your help is so important!

We are so excited to share this project with the world, but before that can happen we need your help! Our funding goal is based on a detailed production budget and we need every penny to make this film a reality.

Budget Breakdown:

  • Cast and Crew 
  • Travel Expenses 
  • Camera 
  • Lighting 
  • Sound 
  • Period Costumes/ Set Design 
  • Music 
  • Food and Lodging 
  • Marketing and Publicity Post Production 
  • Film Festival Fees

As many of you know, creating a great film is not free and we appreciate each and every penny donated. We also deeply appreciate you sharing our Kickstarter with your friends and family!

Please contact us with any inquiries or comments to: doukfilm@gmail.com and visit our WebsiteInstagram, and Facebook pages!

This is a story that needs to be told and with your generous help, we can bring it to life.

Much love,

Team Douk

Risks and challenges

The bigger the risk, the bigger the payoff. Douk is an ambitious project and we are consciously making decisions to bring authenticity and realism to our film. This authenticity extends to locations, actors, set design, and costumes. As this is a period piece taking place in the early 1900’s, it is essential that we have what we need to adhere to that time period. We plan to shoot on a reservation in California using local Native actors as well as bringing in Native actors from different areas of the country. Many of our crew are based in the Washington DC area and finding the funds to send us to California is a crucial first step. We know where we want to shoot, but we need the funds to get us there. We also need to find our Native actors and we need the funds to do so. That said, our biggest expenses and challenges will be travel costs, cast/crew expenses, set design and costumes. Creating a meaningful and accurate story is our main focus and hitting our Kickstarter goal will bring us much closer to bringing the film to life.

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Support

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    Willow Sticks - Essential to the Basket

    All things need to have a foundation to begin with. Like the willow sticks that are needed to make a traditional North Coast Native Basket.

    Perks Include: A shoutout on the Douk's Facebook page as a thank you for contributing to our film and a digital copy of the film upon completion of the project.

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    Spruce Root - What Ties All

    What connects everything in order to make a basket is the spruce root.

    Perks Include: A sticker and button with the Douk logo, in addition to a digital copy of the film.

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    Fern Fibers - That Special Design

    Fern Fibers help to make the design on the basket.

    Perks Include: The writer/director will give a public shoutout on social media, and a digital copy of the film.

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    The Button - Beginning of the Basket

    The button is the starting point of the basket.

    Perks Include: A Douk t-shirt, in addition to a digital copy of the film.

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    Bashachbach - Tiny Basket

    The bashachbach is typically the first basket a basket weaver makes. Though it's maybe tiny, it's delicate and strong.

    Perks Include: A Behind the Scenes Photo Book and a digital copy of the film.

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    Bas - The Basket Plate

    Bas is the plate that you holds things in or eat from.

    Perks Include: A signed Polaroid pictures, in addition to everything mentioned above.

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    Diloul - Storage Basket

    A signed poster and script, in addition to behind the scenes photo book and a digital copy.

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    Halawilouwilh - Cooking Basket

    A Google Hangout interview with the Director and Producer during the production of the film. The dates TBD, but will work around your schedule!

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    Kagh - Clamshell Beads

    An unique and one of a kind traditionally handmaid tribal jewelry set.

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    Invitation to our Wrap Party and Private Screening.

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    Bitwa'lilh - Basket Tray

    Executive Producer Credit, as well as a credit that will appear on IMDB and everything mentioned above.

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Funding period

- (30 days)