WHAT IS 'AT THE MAPLE GROVE'?
"At The Maple Grove" is an independent dramatic feature that has just completed production and is now in post-production.
The film is about a renowned night club called The Maple Grove, and the performers that work there, as it preps for what might be its final show. Interwoven with this is the story of a young filmmaker who suffers a health scare, and how his creativity bleeds into life.
Inspired by the work of John Cassavetes & Bob Fosse, as well as the film-within-a-film genre seen in Francois Truffaut's "Day For Night" and Federico Fellini's "8 1/2," "At The Maple Grove" slowly blends “the real world” of our young director– his life, his relationships and his friends– with the “movie world” of his imagination when he ultimately begins making his film.
And though much of the film draws heavily on its cinematic influences, the story is also based on the filmmaker behind the project.
In January of 2012, writer/director Christopher Zatta began sitting in on acting classes at the Stephanie Feury Studio in Hollywood. While watching various actors perform a variety of scenes from plays, the idea behind "At The Maple Grove" began to grow, with a storyline borrowing from Christopher’s own personal and career experiences, and characters written specifically for the actors from the acting studio.
OKAY, BUT WHAT’S THE HEART OF THE STORY?
At its core this is a story about pursuing your dreams. No matter the risk, regardless of who tells you it’ll never happen or says it’s a mistake or tries to make you compromise yourself instead. A story about sacrificing everything to make your dream a reality and maintain your ideals, before it’s too late.
WHO’S MAKING THIS FILM?
Writer/Director Christopher Zatta was previously a TV writer for NBC’s “Heroes,” where he wrote the Season 1 episode “Parasite,” and co-wrote the Season 3 episodes “Dying Of The Light” and “Cold Wars.”
He’s also written and directed two short films, the psychological horror “Harvey’s Dream,” which he adapted from a story by Stephen King, and the neo-noir “Ambition Of Love,” which played several festivals, won a couple awards and was selected for exhibition in Werner Herzog’s Rogue Film School Seminar.
Actor/Producer Alison Zatta is an actress, writer, producer, and lyricist (and also Christopher's sister!). She attended Georgetown University in Washington DC, where her theater credits included the title role in the DC area premiere of Sarah Ruhl's "Eurydice."
In 2009, Alison moved to Los Angeles, where she has appeared in a number of short films and theatrical productions, including "Ambition of Love," "Harvey's Dream," and the music video for P!nk's hit single "Perfect." She wrote, starred in, and, with her brother Christopher, co-directed the web series "Molly Gordon Has No Friends," due out this fall; and she is currently co-writing a comedic holiday musical. "At The Maple Grove" is her first feature.
Producer Lyman Creason has been working in film since 2003, both in New York, Kentucky and Los Angeles. He recently produced the romantic bowling comedy "Split," in addition to making an award winning documentary on horse racing and their owners.
Producer Michel DeAscentiis immediately moved to NYC after graduating from the University of Scranton to jump start his professional career on the Academy Award nominated film, "Rachel Getting Married." He quickly found his way to the producer's discipline after exploring different departments spanning from the editing room to the art department, on several projects, including, "The Road," and "Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps."
Over the last few years DeAscentiis' credit's include work on "Cowboys and Aliens," "Man of Steel," and associate producing the independent feature "Occupied." In 2012, DeAscentiis settled full time in Los Angeles as Creative Producer at Fullscreen, a global digital network for creators and brands. He is thrilled to continue his independent credits with "At The Maple Grove."
At the end of the day, everyone in the cast and crew purely aimed to make a film that we were passionate about, to have a fun time doing it, and then to share it with people. But finishing the film and getting it out into the world doesn’t happen for free.
WHERE WILL THE DONATED MONEY GO?
Every dollar successfully raised (minus the Kickstarter & Amazon fees) will go towards post-production. The campaign goal of $20,000 is the bare minimum required to complete the film on a shoestring, ultra low budget where every dollar is stretched as far as it can go.
It’ll pay for: Editing, Sound Design, Visual Effects, Color Correction, Music, Film Festival Submissions & even the hard drives to store all the footage. Sounds like a lot to pay for?
We agree. Certainly too much without help. Which is why we’re using Kickstarter.
WHAT IS KICKSTARTER?
Kickstarter provides a way to raise funds as well as grow a community of supporters and participators in the process of making a film. And for every amount that you donate, you also get some fun rewards as a “Thank You.” The bigger the pledge, the bigger the reward. It’s an all-or-nothing method though, meaning that if this campaign doesn’t raise $20,000 from donations by October 11th 2013, the film won’t receive any money and you won’t be charged a penny. Unfortunately you also won’t get the rewards.
The rewards are listed along the right side of this page. Things like a DVD copy of the film, the screenplay, a poster created by our production designers Jill Bencsits & Nico Guidote, plus exclusive looks behind the scenes and plenty more. And every dollar we raise that exceeds our goal will only increase the resources and production value of the finished product. Every bit counts!
HOW DO YOU DONATE, SUPPORT & PARTICIPATE?
By clicking the “Back This Project” button at the top of this page you’ll be asked to sign up for a free account; then input your donation amount, any amount you can, and choose a reward. Easy Peasy. From there, you’ll be taken to the Amazon.com checkout page to complete the donation process.
HOW ELSE CAN YOU HELP?
Besides making a donation, and even if you can’t donate, please spread the word! ‘Like’ the film on Facebook, share the link on Twitter, tell your friends and family about it. Exercise that tried-and-true method known as word-of-mouth! This film absolutely needs your help to get finished and released.
Thank you so much for visiting this page and considering making a donation. If you have any questions or just want to say hello, please feel free to contact us. We love to hear from any supporters and prospective supporters!
CHRISTOPHER ZATTA: Writer/Director/Producer
Risks and challenges
Our biggest challenge - actually filming the movie - is already done. We've managed to overcome the difficulties of completing production, with a large page count in our script, a big ensemble cast, several locations and an ultra low budget. This was a challenging project that we were able to accomplish through the team effort made by our hard-working, passionate and dedicated cast and crew.
But post-production brings all new challenges and there are several steps still ahead in the process of making the movie before we can get it to an audience. Editing, sound design, color correction, music… But we already have the team members in place to handle each stage. All we need is the financial support.
Our goal is to complete the film as soon as possible to submit for major festival deadlines, to premiere the film and secure distribution. There are also various platforms for self-distribution, such as contacting movie theaters directly, using the website Tugg to raise local interest in seeing our film and selling the film directly to an audience.
One way or another we’ll get it out there!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (32 days)