A film based on the famous viral story about a man who must carry his wife to the door for 30 days in order to get a divorce from her.
A film based on the famous viral story about a man who must carry his wife to the door for 30 days in order to get a divorce from her.
In late 2012 I was surfing around Facebook and a headline appeared on a friend's status that caught my attention. It read, "Married or not, you should read this..." After reading the story my first response was that I have to make a film out of this story. Many of you may have seen this story somewhere online and probably had the same emotional response that I did.
Brief description of the story
The story is about a man who is having an affair with his secretary and asks his wife for a divorce. When asked why, he could only answer by saying that he had fallen out of love with her. Because of the guilt he feels he offers her everything, the house, the car, a percentage of the business but she doesn't accept. Days later she offers her conditions, which are that he stay home for a month as to not disrupt there young son's last month of 4th grade with a divorce. She also asks him to recall how he carried her to their bridal suite on their wedding day. She requests that everyday for the month's duration that he carry her to the front door on his way to work. If he can stomach this she will give him a divorce and let him keep everything and she won't take a dime.
The mistress thinks this is absurd but he agrees. It's too good of a deal not to take.
During the 30 days the husband slowly begins to reestablish a connection with his wife and he also sees what a positive impact this has on their young son. By the end the husband has fallen back in love with his wife and calls off the affair. He rushes home with flowers to find that his wife has died from terminal cancer that he was to preoccupied to notice.
You can read the viral story HERE
If you followed the link to the viral story you would've noticed that the story is only a couple of pages long. Definitely not enough for a 90 minute movie. So our writers Kevin McMahon and Guy Nardulli spent a long time further developing the story and adding in many layers in order to make a very compelling and beautiful 100 page screenplay.
We've added many characters and many elements and changed a few things around to make this story even more emotionally charged and realistic.
LAYERS, Layers, layers
Our version of this story has become deep with layers and we've even added in a story thread where the wife, who we've named Stacy, is slipping off to see a very handsome man in a seemingly nondescript office building. It is clear that the two have a very loving relationship and care deeply for each other. The audience will think that she is also cheating on her husband and perhaps that's why she's okay with letting him have everything in the divorce. This other man could possibly be the one who will take care of her after the divorce. But wait. That's not the truth. We think all along that they are talking about their relationship and whether or not to keep it going but in reality they are talking about cancer and coming to terms with the fact that the treatments are no longer working.
Stacy struggles with her own secrets throughout the entire film. She doesn't want to tell her husband, Joe, that she is dying of cancer because she doesn't want him to stay with her in these final days out of pity. She also doesn't tell her family that Joe asked for a divorce because she doesn't want any bad blood between them and her husband after she is gone.
Where did the story come from?
Director and writer Kevin McMahon knew from the moment he read the story that he needed to make it into a film. He searched for more than a year for the original author but found that this is unknown. He also found that the first time an early version of this story surfaced was in Malaysia and it circulated virally throughout much of Asia for years. It was translated and changed a bit when it first appeared here in the U.S. nearly 10 years ago. The first several versions had a happy ending but as a story is told by many mouths changes are made and cancer was added. The story has been morphed and altered through the years by unknown story tellers putting this idea in the public domain. An article about this story can be read HERE.
We have further evolved the story into a very complex, multilayered story that will only resemble the latest viral version. In short we have made it WAY BETTER.
The son speaks through his art
Joe and Stacy's son, Anthony, has a vivid imagination and expresses himself though roll playing and drawings. His imaginative drawings play a HUGE roll in bridging the gap between his parents and adding great depth to the story. A progression of his drawings are actually designed by Anthony to tell his dad that something is wrong with mommy. Joe doesn't look hard enough to get it but in the end he puts the clues hidden in the drawings together to realize the pain that his wife has been hiding from him.
You're going to film this in Nebraska?
For years we tried to get this film off the ground in Los Angeles but for many reasons we could never keep it alive. The filmmakers involved are a collection of very busy Hollywood professionals always hard at work helping others achieve their dreams. Recently Kevin temporarily relocated back to his home state of Nebraska and partnered with three new producers who had spent years in Hollywood but also recently moved back home to Nebraska.
It didn't take long to learn about the exciting brand new incentives offered in Nebraska and after a cost analysis was made we found that our budget could go twice as far here than in California.
Our production will be headquartered in Fremont, NE to take advantage of a wonderful new community film incentive program in the city. A bulk of the film will be shot in Fremont but we will also use several spots in Omaha as well.
We have done a very detailed line item budget that came up to approximately $850,000. This is the absolute minimum that we believe will allow us to make a film with "A" list stars that can be theatrically released. We also want the film to raise consciousness and remind people that promises and commitments are important things to keep.
That's a lot of MONEY! - That's hardly enough Money!
Some of you may see that amount of money and think that's an awful lot of money while others of you who have knowledge of the film industry may be saying, "you'll never get an "A" list cast for that small amount of money." The answer to both is that properly done motion pictures take a tremendous amount of highly specialized skilled laborers, time and massive resources to accomplish. For example we will need to feed a 45 person crew catered lunch for 20 days at a cost of $18,000, Digital cinema camera rentals will cost $36,000 for the run of the film, star trailers, motorhomes, stake beds, grip and electric trucks and honey wagons will all need to be rented and gassed up every week. The $$$ adds up very quickly and you start to get the idea of where it all goes.
On the scale of things this is actually a very low budget for a film of this caliber. We intend to get "A" list talent by reserving a significant portion of the budget for their salaries. We are certain that the right actors will connect with this script and see the opportunity to portray a great character in a film that will definitely be a success.
We know that there is a huge fan base for this story already and that many who have read it have been powerfully effected by its message. The story has a life virally online and we want to make this film happen with the help of all of the people who helped give it that life. If just 1% of the story's fans can become aware of this campaign and make a donation this film could be funded several times over.
We believe that because of that built in fan base this film will be in high demand and a huge success in the theater. It's truly a crowd created phenomenon that hopefully can be crowd funded into its next evolutionary existence and enjoyed by all who took part in making it happen.
Through our current experience at film markets like Cannes and AFM we also know that this film fits in a genre that is selling very well at present. Family and faith based films have been doing very well in recent years and the genre is not saturated like horror.
We would also prefer to fund this film through the fans of the story so that we can keep its integrity for the fans. There are many studios that would be interested in funding such a film with a built in audience but often times with that comes strange directives to change elements of the story which all too often takes away from the true heart of the film.
The sappy stuff
The message embedded in this film is one that is very close to our hearts. We believe that the words "I do" should not be said haphazardly and that they should carry more weight than what they currently seem to in our present day culture. We want this film to make people realize that our promises are important and that our character is defined by how well we stick to our commitments. We want this film to set a tone that just because something might be off in our marriages or relationships it doesn't mean that the first option is to upgrade to a new model. Instead we should remember why we're together, try to retrace our steps and identify what went wrong and correct the course together.
We believe this film can have a huge impact on audiences and relationships around the world.
One of the big threads in this film is how cancer can affect our lives. We hope to bring great awareness to the subject and start us talking about how to prevent it or catch it in time. Many of our rewards are geared towards just that.
Some of you have already done so much to keep this story moving over the years but for this next evolution we need your help. If you like this story or you like and believe in us please help us by making a donation. There are many levels of donations to make and there are many great rewards we are offering to you in return for your generous support.
If you're too strapped that's okay. We can still use your help by helping us get the word out, share with your friends, tell others about us, by tweeting, etc.
This film can ONLY be made with YOUR help.
By the end of our campaign on April 15th we hope to be fully funded and we will start with preproduction immediately.
- April - Establish production office, hire casting director, check actor availability, scout locations.
- May - Finalize locations, hold auditions, secure A list talent, hire crew
- June - Start principle photography
- July - Wrap principle photography, begin post production, start music
- September - Picture edit locked, composing nearly complete, sound mix and sound design
- October - Film complete.
The TEAM behind the film
KEVIN MCMAHON is the Director and Writer of Last Goodbye. He has worked in Hollywood for 16 years doing many jobs including Director of Photography, Editor, Producer, Writer and Director. Most of his credits come from television but has recently worked on several films and two of his scripts are going into production with major Hollywood companies. He is also a music video director and has had number videos for Grammy winning artists.
GUY NARDULLI is a prolific actor who will produce and helped write Last Goodbye. Guy has dozens of television and feature film acting credits and first worked with McMahon on the feature film The Devil's in the Details starring Ray Liotta.
BRIAN SABATA has previously been the Head of Business Affairs for Lighthouse Pictures and Camelot Distribution Group. In these positions, Mr. Sabata was responsible for domestic and international acquisition, distribution and maintenance of over three hundred motion pictures.
RANDY J GOODWIN has acted in more than 40 television shows, films and commercials. He does acting/writing seminars title Navigating Hollywood with Integrity and What I Wish I Knew Before I Got Here. He is known in Hollywood for his integrity, morals and values and has officially turned down more work than any actor in Hollywood because he "won't cross the line." Goodwin also starred in the first season of UPN's hit sitcom "Girlfriends," whose executive producer, Kelsey Grammer (Frasier), cast him in two more projects.
LUCIS SHERIDAN is a Nebraska native, producer, director and actor known for "A Grave Mistake," "Reversal" and "Mustang Magic" He also was one of two producer's on McMahon's first feature film "Military Husband." Sheridan has worked under some of the most prolific producers in Hollywood and returns to Nebraska to create a support infrastructure for the motion picture industry.
Risks and challenges
Our biggest challenge will be to secure the right cast and A list talent and have everyone's schedule line up. It is possible that the beginning of principle photography will change depending upon actor availability.
We would love to take the film to the Cannes Market that coincides with the Canned International Film Festival and have the film screened for buyers in May of 2016. If we are funded by April and start principle photography during the summer we are confident that we will make this goal a reality.
Getting a distribution deal for the film to make it to the theater is always a challenge for the independent world. We are confident that we can secure North American theatrical distribution as two of our team members have extensive experience in distribution. We also believe that based on the built in audience and popularity of the story that we will have a better chance than many at a wide theatrical release.
Some of our rewards like advance film screenings may fall on a date that doesn't work with a supporter who donated at that level. We hope that doesn't happen and will do our best to keep everyone informed well in advance of any screenings dates and times.
We hope that we sell out for our advance screenings listed in our rewards. If so we will have the ability to host the screenings in the best and biggest theaters. If, however, very few support at that level we will have to downscale our venue but we will do our best to make it a memorable experience and show our gratitude.
Any DVDs, Blu Rays and digital downloads will not be sent out until after the theatrical premiere.
All prizes to be shipped through the mail will be for the U.S. and Canada with shipping included. We may charge extra shipping for packages to be sent to the rest of the world.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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