Thank You for Supporting Us
Thanks to your contributions and support, our team is now able to bring Sophie to life.Your donations propelled us past our minimum goal with 9 Days to spare! We thank you very much for all of your efforts in helping this film succeed on Kickstarter. Now, we have set a Stretch Goal for ourselves.
ANY EXTRA DONATIONS PAST OUR MINIMUM GOAL WILL HELP IMPROVE THE QUALITY OF SOPHIE AND HELP THIS PROJECT REACH A WIDER AUDIENCE!
Extra funds will help improve several areas including costumes, sets, and props. You can also help Sophie reach a wider audience with your supplementary donations. By helping us reach our stretch goal, we will be able to afford the submission costs to more film festivals. This means that a film YOU helped create will be brought to audiences beyond Saint Louis.
What's the Film About?
Sophie is a short fantasy film that follows the story of a young girl who finds herself stuck in a dark, eerie and immersive realm from which she must escape. Once inside this world, Sophie joins forces with Tristan, an odd and unpredictable young man who becomes her ally against the evil dark queen and her chancellor.
With your kind donations we will be able to produce a very high-quality short film that will make your head spin with excitement. We want to make a fantasy drama that pays heavy emphasis to not only its story but also to the costume and set design. We want to paint a visually dazzling picture for you to become immersed in this realm that holds captive the story’s protagonist, Sophie.
Who We Are
We are a group of passionate filmmakers, designers, musicians and visual artists from the Greater Saint Louis area who are committed in bringing this wonderful film to life. The team, led by director Alvaro Aro, will be shooting entirely at the incomparable Kuhs Estate & Farm; a private historic 150 acre estate and farm located in Spanish Lake, Missouri.
Let us introduce you to some members of our amazing team:
Director and Writer Alvaro Aro was born and raised in Peru, surrounded by a close knit group of artistic friends. Through this group, Al was exposed to many European influences, enjoying the bands and movies he loved where dark and evocative patterns made a strong and indelible impression on him. He began his creative journey by securing a job as a sound technician at Radical Producciones; a Peruvian advertising company, where his eyes were opened to the creative blending of visuals and sound.
After moving to the United States, Al served in the Marine Corps for 8 years; enlisting first with the infantry and later, making a lateral move into Media and Public Affairs. He began a deeper journey into photography and video after attending Defense Information School at Fort Meade, Maryland. This set him on a path to begin producing imagery and the self exploration of light, composition and technology.
His photographic skill and ability started to garner attention, and before he knew it, he was shooting for clients and was asked to capture events, people, and runway fashion shows. Two years before leaving the Marines, he co-founded Vimage Studios LLP. Now, fully immersed in the world of capturing and recording the beauty of life, he began formal studies of filmmaking and photography at Webster University. During his time as a student, Al has filmed and directed award winning short films, shot content for other directors, as well as produced work for private individuals, and corporate clients.
His tireless inspiration will always be the beauty that he sees in the world when looking through his lens and the possibilities it holds to transform an audience. (Though he wouldn’t write this biography for himself), it can be said without agenda, that he sees a captivating multi-textural world and even though he talks of himself as an entertainer; it is clear that his drive to tell a compelling story accompanied by captivating and effective visuals truly reflects his moviemaking craft and his true self as an artist.
Production Design and Co-Writer Elizabeth Parker and Director Alvaro Aro met in 2013 while collaborating on a photo shoot, and since then have worked on multiple video and print projects. Sophie is Elizabeth's 7th film project being involved on the creative and visual level and her 4th assisting in story development and screenplay. Parker spent summers working backstage at opera Theater of St. Louis in both the props and costume department. In addition to running several businesses, Elizabeth uses her background in marketing, photography and event design to do client based visual concept development. Her favorite projects are the ones she takes on for the sheer thrill of working with other talented people all committed to creating something hauntingly visual and iconic... like Sophie.
Costume Designer Scott Breihan is a St. Louis native who attended The University of Missouri in Kansas City for a degree in Technical Theatre with an Emphasis in Costume Design. He worked as a freelance costume designer in the St. Louis Theatre circles for ten years and served as Resident Costume Designer for HotCity Theatre for the 2007-2008 seasons. He has designed and produced costumes for twenty stage productions, including two world premieres. Scott considers himself extremely lucky to be working with the cast and crew of Sophie and is excited to help share director Alvaro Aro’s vision.
Justin L. Fisher will be in charge of sound during production. He is an audio engineer, producer, and musician from St. Louis, MO. Justin has worked as the chief engineer at SmithLee Productions since 2003 and has taught audio at Webster University since 2004. Justin has been the recipient of many awards such as the Emmy, Telly, Chinese Academy Award and has mixed award winning feature length films and documentaries such as Deadline In Disaster, Trustees for the Public, and The Art of Crystal Bridges. Radio, television and broadcast clients include Disney, Lucas Arts, Anheuser-Busch, John Deere, Monsanto, Emerson, Hewlett-Packard, and, Enterprise, among others.
We are very lucky to collaborate with a group of extremely talented people. Attention to detail is very important in the making of Sophie and our collaborators will help us enormously in some "more specific" areas within our filmmaking process. Thank you for your support =)
Take a listen to the pulsing downtempo beats of Sinfinis, and let your mind, body and soul be touched by it. Formed by Mary Elizabeth and Kai Kennedy, their haunting and infectious tunes will be featured in the film. Check it out.
With a unique vision, designer Erica Dunk created Hyper Haute Jewelry. Her style, which is a gap between haute design and radical prorsum fashion, is conceived by providing a new and dramatic set of jewelry that not only accentuates the female form, but also blurs the lines between art and fashion. Erica's designs will add the majestic visuals required in our characters..
Nicole Ogden (Sophie) was born and raised in Saint Louis and has been in a number of productions; most notably Riverside Shakespeare’s ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ as Hermia and as Elma Duckworth in Theater Guild of Webster Groves’ ‘Bus Stop.' She began acting in high school and continued her theater career at Lindenwood University. Nicole will play as our dearly loved ‘Sophie’
Brock Russell (Tristan) is a devoted lover of all aspects of moviemaking and a graduate from Webster University with a BFA in Film Production. He loves to be behind the camera as much as in front of it. Brock will be playing the role of Tristan, an odd and unpredictable ally to Sophie.
Greg Savel (The Chancellor) was born and raised in St. Louis. He grew up in Ballwin, and attended Parkway West HS, where the acting bug first bit him. Greg graduated from Bradley University with a Bachelor’s in Acting and he will be playing the role of "The Chancellor," a soulless adviser to the throne.
Our Progress So Far
We have been busy working in the pre-production process for about six months now and at this point, we are able to share everything you see in this page. Make sure to stop by our Official Sophie Facebook Page for more "Behind The Scenes" videos and photos.
Because of the commitment to this project, we have been able to finalize a great deal of tasks to include a budget and production report, schedules, initial concept and promotional art, wardrobe for Sophie and Tristan and the entire design and dressing of one the main sets; Tristan's workshop. We continue working toward production and hope to count with your support to have this film on the big screen.
Also, every sketch, photograph and video presented on this page and any of our social media sites is a product of the hard work, time and talent of our team throughout the pre-production process. (third-party work is credited respectively).
We are putting every donation back into Sophie. Many people in our community have already donated their time and talent but there are certain items that require a monetary expense in order to bring this story to life.
If for any reason you would like to see our budget report, feel free to ask! However, in short, your contributions will help us pay for:
- Costume design materials
- Production design tools and materials
- Rental equipment
- Craft and catering services
- Makeup and hair
- Festival submissions
- Campaign fees and contingency expenses
If you are a bit unsure about the process of donating via Kickstarter, let our Assistant Director Gina Cassaro give a short and sweet explanation.
Como funciona Kickstarter?For more information, click here.
In return, we’re offering fun and amazing perks related to the film and from the film set! We will be offering some cool rewards like digital downloads, name in credits, signed posters, props used in the actual film and a large print of Nate wearing nothing but his speedos. Just for you.
- Special Thank You Shoutout ($5 or more) - You will receive a special thank you from the Sophie official Twitter account and Facebook account. You've done a great thing.
- Digital Art Download ($10 or more) - Choose from a variety of posters in full resolution to be available to you via download. We will include more art after production so you can pick your favorite character in the film. + Includes previous reward.
- Digital Copy Of Sophie ($25 or more) - Receive a digital copy of Sophie in High Definition via private link. + Includes all previous rewards.
- Digital Art Book ($50 or more) - For helping us reach our goal, you'll receive a digital book of artwork for Sophie. This book will contain some stories and Behind The Scenes photos from the production. + Includes all previous rewards.
- Autographed Poster ($100 or more) - You will receive a poster of Sophie the Movie signed by Director Alvaro Aro. + Includes all previous non-limited rewards
- Sinfinis CD Bundle ($100 or more) - You will receive a copy of Sinfins' album "Schizophilia"(which was used in Sophie) along with a T-shirt and sticker. This is limited to the first 5 people. So get your bundle fast, before it's gone! + Includes all previous rewards.
- Have Your Name Featured in the Credits ($250 or more) - WELCOME TO THE TEAM. You will have your name featured in the credits as an Associate Producer for your contribution. + Includes all previous non-limited rewards
- Special Edition Blu-Ray DVD ($500 or more) - Packed with tons of special features, this Bluray DVD delivers the film, trailers and behind the scenes footage in high definition plus the entire digital art collection created specially for Sophie. + Includes all previous non-limited rewards.
- A Prop From The Set ($500 or more) - This could be a piece of costume, background piece, or etc. + Includes all previous non-limited rewards
- Be an Extra in the Film ($1000 or more) - 5 generous supporters will get an invitation to BE IN THE FILM as an extra. There's only 5 invitations, so don't miss the chance! + Includes all previous non-limited rewards
- Executive Producer Credits and Invitation To The Shoot ($2500 or more) - For your contributions, you will be invited to visit the set during production. + Includes all previous non-limited rewards
Samples of Previous Work
Take a look at some of the projects our production crew have been a part of.
The Drive - Short film directed and filmed by Alvaro Aro, written by Brian Cooksey.
Web Promo for LK Designs (Direction & Cinematography by Alvaro Aro)
Sanctum - Short film written and directed by Alvaro Aro, Cinematography by Dylan Schnitker and Jake Zavernik.
The Last Hand - Short film directed and filmed by Alvaro Aro, written by Brian Cooksey.
The Practice - Directed by Brian Cooksey. Cinematography by Alvaro Aro.
Melissa - Short film directed and filmed by Alvaro Aro
Why We Need Your Support
Our crew is a creative and very talented team, having previously made several films and worked on various productions in St. Louis but the truth is that making films is not an easy task – we often have to multitask, the days are long, and there’s still never enough time. Making Sophie is truly a labor of love. However, with your help, we can make a powerful, dazzling fantasy movie, and it would be our honor if you supported our efforts to do so.
Other Ways You Can Help
Some people just can't contribute, but that doesn't mean you can't help. Please retweet or repost this campaign to your Facebook walls and other social media groups. We need as much exposure as possible to raise this money. Just hit the share tools for Facebook, Twitter, etc. on the side of this page.
If you live in St. Louis and can donate free services for a day or more as a production assistant, help supply food, assist on social media with some free PR. Please reach us out at email@example.com
Risks and challenges
The most difficult challenge at hand is the creation of Sophie's world, which involves custom-made locations, wardrobe, and props. Although we are working with very creative artists, the acquisition for the right materials plays a huge role when making them look real. We have allocated a good portion of our budget to these tasks and kept a few backup resources for the worst case scenarios.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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