Come on friends, let's make this movie!
What's the story?
In 1948, a WWII veteran visits the widow of his best friend from the war, to reveal the painful, dark secret he’s been keeping about his friend... but can she come to accept that her husband was not the man she thought he was?
What makes K.I.A. special?
- A Different Kind of War Film - What makes K.I.A. innovative is its approach to the war film. Traditionally, women are rarely a part of the conversation in movies about war, and K.I.A. juxtaposes the story of a woman at home against a troubled soldier coping with undiagnosed PTSD. Each story has validity, yet both of these perspectives are often overlooked in favor of a glorification of war, particularly when it comes to depictions of World War II.
- An Actor and Director - I am both an actor and filmmaker. By “wearing both hats” I think I approach storytelling in a different way than many directors. Character and humanity are central to my approach to filmmaking. I find myself most drawn to the questions of what makes people behave the way that they do, and how can we understand people who are different from ourselves? With K.I.A., I plan to explore these questions, as Alice and Rick are faced with the same facts, but their reactions are diametrically opposed.
- A Female Filmmaker - In a time when women are still underrepresented in the film industry, I feel very strongly that I can bring this story to life in a way that no one else can. My vision, years of experience, and commitment to this story make me the ideal filmmaker to bring this unique take on the impact of war to life.
What will your money go toward?
Full Synopsis: We open on Alice, a sweet-looking housewife, preparing dinner. She eyes the clock, eagerly awaiting a guest. A knock on the door announces the arrival of Rick, a kind but quiet WWII vet who fought alongside Alice's first husband, Don (who died in the war). Alice welcomes him inside and begins to share her own memories of the war, revealing her unshakeable reverence for her late husband’s heroism.
Rick eventually brings himself to share the true reason for his visit: he needs to tell her something… something about Don’s death. The story bubbles up out of him as he recounts their gruesome final mission, the liberation of a Nazi death camp. He vividly reveals that despite their surrender, he and Don shot down the surrendered guards and other POWs. Alice cannot believe what she is hearing. She has a letter stating that Don was “killed in action” so she knows he couldn’t have made it through the liberation. Rick confirms the truth of the letter, but then explains that after witnessing the horrors of the camp, Don snapped. The stress was insurmountable and Don became hysterical, turning his gun on Rick, ready to shoot. In his own defense, Rick aimed for his friend’s shoulder and shot back. But Don moved… and was mortally wounded. Rick insists that Alice’s K.I.A. letter is merely a cover-up for the egregious war crimes the soldiers committed.
Alice grows icy and distant, unwilling to acknowledge this new version of her deceased husband. Before any peace can be made, her new husband Walter arrives home, ready for their dinner. They must decide whether to confront the truth, or live in the reality that they choose...
Historical Background: Rick’s story is loosely inspired by the Dachau Massacre, which occurred on April 29th, 1945. Upon the liberation of the Dachau concentration camp, American soldiers executed the remaining surrendered German guards. These soldiers saw unimaginable horrors and were forever changed. PTSD was an unrecognized condition during World War II, and did not become formally acknowledged by the American Psychiatric Association until 1980. The term “shell shocked” was used during World War I, but the condition was largely misunderstood and stigmatized.
Micah Hauptman - Raised in Philadelphia, Micah began studying theater at West Chester University where he earned an undergraduate degree in theatre and then the prestigious Actors Studio. Micah began popping up in small supporting roles in films such as Iron Man and Sundance hit Finishing the Game. Most recently, he's appeared on Homeland, The Glades, and Supernatural, as well as the feature films Bread and Butter and Everest.
Christine Weatherup - A native of Los Angeles, Christine began acting as a teenager and has worked consistently ever since in everything from film and TV to new media and theater. She graduated from USC with a triple major in Theater, Cinematic Arts and Political Science. Most recently, she appeared on Grey's Anatomy, Mad Men and CSI: Cyber. Christine produced and acts in the webseries Squaresville, and played the lead role in the indie feature Bread and Butter (for which she won “Best Actress” at NIFF 2015)
Awarded the Puffin Grant!
We've already received the Puffin Grant, and in addition to that and our own funds, we are halfway to our budget! Help us get all the way there... :)
STRETCH GOAL: $7,500
As I said in our video, the look of the film is vital, and replicating the 1940s will be our biggest challenge. We've already begun location scouting and have found some incredible options. However, some of the best sites (ones with realistic 1940s details, such as vintage stoves and tiling) exceed our current budget. If we can surpass our goal, we will be able to get a better location, more authentic wardrobe (such as a WWII-era military uniform) and better camera gear.
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Risks and challenges
We believe in K.I.A. and want to do it right. Our core expenditures can be broken into a few large categories: Permits, Insurance, Location, Gear, Food and Labor.
Additionally, because the film is set in the late 1940s, we are committed to creating an authentic depiction of the period. Therefore, it is crucial to work with wardrobe, props and set dressings that match the period. While we are fortunate to have industry connections that provide us with a portion of our required labor and gear, a number of essential expenses remain.
Our team is intimately familiar with the process of creating quality entertainment with limited means, as well as building an audience along the way. With my producers, Matt Enlow (writer/director of Squaresville) and Beatriz Chahin (line producer, Squaresville), we shot our second season of the webseries --over one hundred pages-- in only ten days. Despite our breakneck speed and limited means, we were featured in major press outlets (including Entertainment Weekly’s “Must List”), won a number of awards including 2013 Best Comedy and Best Ensemble, garnered over one million views for our show, and made a distribution deal with Big Frame (now part of AwesomenessTV/Dreamworks). I am confident that we have the expertise and practical experience to efficiently shoot and produce this short, as well as find an audience for it.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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