Based on a true story, Yours Truly is a narrative short film that follows a long time gang member named Andres Ramirez, who ponders the possibility of leaving his gang for the sake of his family. However, his older brother Facundo, disagrees with his ideology and believes that family should be united through their growing gang cocaine business. As Andres contemplates the idea of a new life and the tensions between he and Facundo grow, Christian, Andres' apprentice, learns about what the hood is actually like.
Ultimately, Yours Truly aims to view the topic of gang life and membership from a humanizing point of view. This is an angle we rarely see in the mainstream media, when individuals are negatively stereotyped due to their affiliations. This film aims to view these characters from a unique lens in order to create a film that subverts typical assumptions of a "gang film."
The crew of Yours Truly has the honor of working with an incredibly talented cast of professional actors.
Ryan Zimmer as Andres
Ryan Zimmer got his start in the Utah theatre community. He graduated from the University of Utah with his Bachelors in Communications in 2012, and found his love for acting his last year he attended. Ryan worked his way from being an extra to landing supporting and leading roles in web series (Day Zero, The Socialist), short films (Apparition, Anna Ever After), and features (Infinite Gift, Thirst).
Bryan Navarro as Facundo
Trained on-stage by professionals in the SF Bay Area and from the Berkeley Repertory Theatre, Bryan Navarro has brought life to characters in plays from Chekov to Neil Labute and independent films of multiple genres. He brings attention to the screen and stage through his powerful physicality, rich voice, and natural sensibilities.
Paul Guzman as Christian
Paul Guzman graduated from the Stella Adler Academy of Acting and currently takes classes at The Groundlings. He’s a bilingual actor originally from San Diego who’s been in LA for 3 years now. He’s excited to be working with such a hard working group of collaborators and he can’t wait to see where this project goes!
Eduard Trica as Big C.
Eduard Trica is 22 years old and was born and raised in Romania. He started acting at the age of 9 and played in films in The Netherlands, Romania, Thailand and United States. He moved to Los Angeles in 2017 to continue working on his craft. “I believe acting is a very complex art mainly because the actor needs to produce natural emotions for the scenes he plays in. The story on which Yours Truly is based can only trigger so many emotions, not only inside the actor, but especially inside the audience. As an actor, I can only be grateful for playing in this film.”
Martin Chavez as Andres Senior, Andres’ Father
Martin is first generation American-born of Colombian parents in New York City and raised in Sunnyside, Queens. He is a bi-lingual and bi-coastal actor currently residing in Los Angeles. Martin is a person with diverse interests and experiences. He joined the Marine Reserves right out of high school. Upon graduating from high school as a licensed aircraft technician, he was off to boot camp. After completing his training, he pursued a career in modeling. He was able to get representation in that field and started booking jobs for companies such as Sears, Coca-Cola, Nike, and Microsoft. He has been featured in YM Magazine, Latin Girl Magazine, and Urban Latino Magazine. By chance, Martin was asked if he wanted to audition for acting roles, so he studied with Marcia Haufrecht at the Common Basis Theatre and later with Alexandra Neil and Karl Bury at Michael Howard Studios. Since then he has had the good fortune to work on several student films and appear in various television commercials and television programs. Martin is continuously looking for ways to better and challenge himself; he continues to study, practice martial arts and maintain openness to new things. He has also taken on the challenge of film production, having produced three short films. He continues to look for more meaty projects to sink his teeth into.
Silvia Tovar as Beatriz, Andres' Mother
Silvia Tovar was born and raised in Cali, Colombia. She relocated to New York to realize her passion for the arts. She graduated with a BFA in performing arts from Adelphi University and then went on to study at the Lee Strasberg Institute in Manhattan. Silvia has performed in numerous theatre productions. Her performance as Medea in Binomio de Violencia at the Players theatre in NYC earned her an ATI award for best supporting actress. Now in Los Angeles Silvia has study at The Ruskin School of acting, UCB and others. Some of her television credits include General Hospital and Days of Our Lives. She has also appeared in several commercials and films. For more on Silvia, go to www.silviat.com
Andrea Alvarez as Candelaria
Andrea Alvarez is a trilingual Mexican-American from Los Angeles, California. She is a full-time student at the University of California, Santa Barbara studying Chinese and Education and is a part-time Latin dance instructor. She has worked with Santiago Sanchez in the past and is extremely excited about this film because she believes it puts a different perspective on a young man's experience in the gang lifestyle.
Morgan Chancellien as The Drug Client
Morgan Chancellien is an actor known for Revengers Tragedy, School for Scandal, and A Tragedian in Spite of Himself.
While our entire crew has over 40 incredibly driven students, our core crew is comprised of 10 experienced and knowledgable student filmmakers.
Santiago Sanchez - Writer and Director
As Writer and Director of Yours Truly, Santiago Sanchez aims to carefully create a narrative short film in which the experience of gang members will be humanized and potrayed in a much more realistic light than that of normal stereotypical gangster-genre films. He is concerned with how people view the outcasts of society, but also helping society understand how a negative depressive perspective can affect people's life styles. Santiago currently attends the University of California, Santa Barbara and is double majoring in Film & Media Studies and The Philosophy of Ethics. He has worked on a handful of award-winning films that have placed in a number of festivals or competitions. He has previously worked as the Head Videographer and Head Editor at Squyres Productions, while also directing Santa Barbara's Annual Reel Loud Film Festival. He has also been awarded by President Obama, the California State Senate, and the Mayor of Baldwin Park for leadership/community service. With that experience, he hopes to create a film that, in the end, his audiences will be able to sympathize with a gang member, but also realize the stigma and deeper issues within ganghood. He is very excited to get this project going and cannot wait for you to see what our crew has to offer. From him directly, "Thanks so much!"
Mika Pham - Producer
Mika Pham is a second year Film and Media studies and Pre-Communication double major. She’s had the opportunity to work on five other student films during her first year at UCSB, three of which have won awards at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival, LA Music Video festival, and Los Angeles 48 Hour Film Project; now she is blessed to be the Producer for Yours Truly. She eagerly looks forward to working on this film with the cast and crew, and hopes to learn as much as she can for future projects. She loves Jesus, food, anime (about food), matcha, and earl grey tea.
Beatriz Ulloa - Production Manager
Beatriz Ulloa is a third year Film and Media Studies major at UCSB. She has had the pleasure of working on four different film productions as a Production Designer, Production Design Assistant, and this year she’s thrilled to be the Production Manager for Yours Truly. When Beatriz is not working on a film you’ll most likely find her watching the sunset or looking for a dog to pet.
Bradley Virshup - Director of Photography
Bradley Virshup is a senior in UCSB’s Film and Media Program, whose focus is on cinematography. Bradley has shot several award-winning short films, music videos, and documentaries. He looks forward to creating strong visuals that will help to bring Santiago’s powerful story to life.
Robin Kim - Associate Producer and Gaffer
Robin Kim is a third year Film and Media Studies student. He is the gaffer and associate producer for this film. The reason that Robin is so invested in this project is because he believes that everybody in the world deserves to be understood. People should not be judged based on our own prejudices. Those we deem to be failures or undesirable just needed one person to guide them down the right path. This is a message that Robin hopes will be spread through this film. A fun fact about Robin is that he likes to sing and hopes to contribute to the soundtrack of the film.
Emma Stehli - First Assistant Camera
Emma Stehli, born and raised in Portland, Maine, has grown up around photography and film from an early age. Emma's passion for visual storytelling has led her to pursue filmmaking at the University of California, Santa Barbara. She has worked on many short film projects, most recently leading her to Easter Island to help film a documentary. Emma is looking forward to helping bring to life the vision, Santiago, the director of Yours Truly has, in order to tell this powerful story of humanity.
Katie Michel - Production Designer
Katie Michel is a third year film and media studies major minoring in English. She has worked on multiple student film projects in the past fulfilling roles such as Script Supervisor, Marketing Lead, Producer, and now Production Designer. She has also worked on a few professional sets and looks forward to what projects lie ahead.
Joshua Bevan - Editor
Joshua is a second year Film and Media Studies major who loves filmmaking. He's edited several projects in the past year, including award winning films for festivals such as the Santa Barbara International Film Festival 10-10-10, and the Los Angeles 48 Hour Film Competition. He is eager to help bring this film to life from the post-side of production.
Dan Kearney - Boom Operator
Dan Kearney is from Lompoc, California and is a senior at UCSB majoring in Film and Media Studies. In his free time he performs on independent professional wrestling shows. He has worked on various film projects throughout his time at Allan Hancock College and UCSB, and is excited to work in the sound department for Yours Truly. He hopes that this project will be a starting point for a possible career in sound, and is enthusiastic about working on a project with such a strong message to convey.
Olivia Jiabi Li - Sound Mixer
Olivia Li is trilingual in English, Chinese, and German. She is a double major in Global Study and Statistics, and double minors in Music and German. She has been the president of the International Student Film Association at UCSB since 2016. During her term, she has directed, produced, DP’ed three original short films from 2016 to 2017.
Risks and challenges
We are a group of incredibly passionate, driven, and creative student filmmakers. Despite the fact that we are all still learning and growing in our craft, our goal is to a final product that looks as professional as possible, as we intend to submit this film to professional festivals such as Telluride and Tribeca for 2018.
The completion of this Kickstarter allows us to compensate our cast of talented professional actors, access the highest quality equipment, and gain permits to locations that match our vision. All of these elements contribute to us creating a professional quality film, bringing our director's vision to life, and communicating our message of hope to our audiences.
- (59 days)