Disclaimer: Video Content may be a trigger of emotions for some. Semi-graphic details included as events actually occurred to me (Aprille).
"Above all, be the heroine of your life, not the victim." Nora Ephron
Imagine this: Being 19 years old and hopeful about the world and how you'd grow up to do the things you've been wanting to since childhood....only to have the most intimate piece of you stolen like a thief in the night. Imagine all of your naivety being painted over with tar and the purity of your thoughts about the world, warped. Imagine being deceived and manipulated by someone you want to trust. Imagine drowning or burning in a fire - or being on the brink of ending it all. This film is about RESILIENCY.
WHY I CHOSE TO SHARE SOMETHING SO VILE AND PAINFUL:
This happened 20 years ago this year - and I still remember everything about that experience. It happens everyday - every 107* seconds - someone over the age of 12 in the US is raped.* And 47% of those victims know their attacker.* We often want to sweep ugliness under the rug but I can't. I can no longer live in a world where I stand by and not do more. I dare not reach back and attempt to empower others to overcome - to thrive - to rise up from their pain, shame and dismay. I'm not a talker or a wisher.
I've decided to be apart of a dire solution in a very personal way - using my life as an example. In the words of Mikhail Gorbachev, "If not me, who. And if not now, when?
Intense crime short film inspired by the true story of my own experience and resiliency. As apart of my overall movement to empower women, I am sharing a past pain of being raped by a guy I knew for five days with the world in hopes that people who can relate will not feel alone in their struggle to be heard, and not just heard but seen and not just seen but felt.
I've always wanted to present this specific chapter of my memoir, Confessions of an Independent Woman: Truth, Lies & Relationships from the time I wrote it. I wanted people to know that no matter what happens in life, they can overcome. We can activate our own resiliency.
The film will use flash imagery to put the audience in the my shoes during that time in 1996. Flashing between the beginning of the story and the end, simultaneously will take viewers through a world wind of emotions. One second you will be filled with joy and hope that comes with meeting someone new and the next you will be taken to a dark place of pain and discomfort.
It's my hope that this film short will force viewers to think differently, see people differently and appreciate the different battles many face. It's our hope that rape isn't called RAPE. The coin "date-rape" diminishes the violent act. I want people to walk away informed. I want survivors to walk away with a sense of inspiration in making their own transformation from circumstances that have overtaken them in their own pasts. It may not be rape - it could be anything a person would identify as overpowering. Such as:
- Health challenges
- Negative thinking
It is meant to encourage those to cultivate their own path of Resilience, in what ever way is personal to them. For me, it was rape.
I am the Founder and CEO of Women Recharged, LLC, a transformational movement that amplifies women's voices and I am ready to take awareness to the next level. It comes from the desire to empower women to rise upon beyond their pains, of their darkest days and it is an invitation to reflect on the true meaning of self-love and trust. It is my hope that this mission:
- Creates a great sense of awareness around Sexual Assault against anyone
- To connect victims/survivors with resources
- To encourage others to own their own truth to foster healing to move past such traumatic events
- To have healthy relationships
"Unbroken Resilience" started off in my mind as an experience I wanted to share with both women and men - to shed light on a taboo topic. That quickly translated into what's next. I wrote the book but I wanted people to see it. I wanted it to play out on the screen. I wanted a deeper visual impact.
To put our needs in perspective, our cast believes in this mission to the point of volunteering much of their talents and passion. The production of the kickstarter video was also a volunteer time and effort. We need $15k to make this a high quality short film and reach the individuals we believe will be impacted by this work. By reaching this goal we'll be able to bring this movie to life and by bringing this movie to life, we will empower and give a voice to what we hope to be millions.
Click here for Access: http://bit.ly/1XgexUw
I met Claudia when she was performing her talent portion of the Miss Black Oklahoma pageant (she won!) several years ago. I said to myself, if I ever needed someone to play a younger me, it would be her. So here we are.
Raw cell phone footage: from Claudia Donnell playing "Aprille" at age 19.
My friend Derod is a school teacher and when I mentioned this idea to him, he was in, with the condition that we make a huge impact.
Raw cell phone footage: from Derod Yancy playing "Daniel" the perpetrator.
I met Summer on Facebook a couple of years ago - then to lunch and we kept in touch. Her personality is amazing and she's one of the smartest young women I know.
Raw cell phone footage from Summer Randall playing "Roxy" Aprille's cousin.
"Without courage we cannot practice any other virtue with consistency." Maya Angelou
I had the pleasure of meeting Nikki a couple of years ago at an event in San Diego - we became friendly, then worked together and developed a friendship - and when she heard about this idea from me she pretty much just told me I needed her expertise (and I did) and then introduced me to Snoop. After a phone meeting and a series of exchanges, he was on board as well. I met Undrell through the works that he does locally with other Filmmakers and artists - when I shared it with him, he was in immediately. We all committed to make this happen because the need is so great and it's personal for various reasons for the each of us.
You can learn more about the Crew professionally below:
Aprille Franks-Hunt (Executive Producer) is a Master Business Coach, Strategist and Philanthropist also the Founder and CEO of Women Recharged, a movement that amplifies women's voices and triumphant stories of truth, and Coach, Speak & Serve™ (CSS), a next-level distance learning platform that helps modern-day authors, speakers and coaches maximize and monetize their messages. Aprille is passionate about people telling their own stories in literary works or films.
Snoop Robinson (Director) is a multi-talented, multi-faceted professional with a vibrant work ethic and a penchant for perfection. A quick glance at his impressive resume reveals his expertise as an actor, director and musician. Snoop has proven his acumen in both comedic and dramatic roles. In February of 2011 Snoop produced and directed, She’s Not Our Sister the stage play, which attracted more than 4,000 patrons on opening night resulting in a sell out crowd, which also resulted in an immediate opportunity to have the stage play filmed for television. The Gospel Music Channel (GMC) acquired She’s Not Our Sister.
Nikki Woods (Producer) is a multi-media personality, Social Media and Personal Branding Coach, Motivational Speaker and Voice-over artist, NIKKI WOODS is the senior producer of the Tom Joyner Morning Show, the most successful syndicated urban radio show in history reaching more than 8 million people on a daily basis. Woods studied education at Howard University in Washington D.C. and journalism at the University of St. Francis in Joliet, Illinois. Her journey in broadcasting landed her in various markets, including St. Louis, Boston and Chicago.
Undrell Maholmes (Cinematographer) is a Oklahoma City based cinematographer and photographer. His journey began at seventeen years old when he learned how to shoot and develop film photography in high school. He later studied photography and design at the Art Institute Of Pittsburgh. A big fan of cinema, Undrell then started studying the shots and movements in some of his favorite films. His passion for storytelling lead him to develop a solid foundation in documentary cinematography, which was perfect for his transition into narrative filmmaking. Undrell has shot several short films, mini documentaries and was a participant in the 2012 Creative Rush & Tallgrass Film Festival’s Down To The Wire 24 Hour Film Race.
In 1996, when this happened I never thought I would be doing this. Any of it. The book wasn't a thought during that time and I sure wasn't thinking of producing a movie. Truthfully, I thought I was dammed. Then as life went on, I learned I wasn't and that I while I didn't have control of the past, I did have control over the future. That revelation is why I started Women Recharged back in 2011. It taught me that when a group of people join forces, they can do anything. And where one of us is weak or down - it's the stretching of those before us that breathes new life into those in need. I was once in need, now I am breathing life into others and I hope you'll join me!!
The creation of a world where women are empowered will be built only with the courage of those willing to fight with their voices! Whether you’ve just got a few minutes to spread the word to share the campaign or you want to back us on any level, every action is important.
Our Backers are up for some pretty awesome rewards. From social love to download-ables, DVD's, official autographed transcripts, becoming apart of our team, pre-screening participation, red carpet invitations to the world premiere and more -we ask that you back "Unbroken Resilience" and let's create change, endorse impact and foster the truth of others.
*Sources: CDC, Department of Justice, RAINN
**Photocredits: Aprille Franks-Hunt & Victor Harris with Versatile Photography
Risks and challenges
Our core team is experience in media of all sorts; radio, theater and film. We're well positioned to produce Unbroken Resilience. With this being my own personal story as the spearhead, I am fully committed to seeing this project to completion as well as the post launch activities to support such a heavy topic.
All of the cast and crew have an agreement in place to fulfill the obligations. Our biggest challenge is making sure what we produce is as top notch as possible, which is why we want you as a backer. Your backing provides financial support but also proves that we can no longer push topics such as rape and sexual assault under the rug.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)