THANK YOU SO MUCH EVERYONE!!! We hit the goal! THE CREW IS GOING NUTS! WE JUST ROBBED A BANK AND THIS MOVIE IS GETTING MADE!!! But... like every good thief, we're greedy and having too much fun to stop. If we hit $35K, we'll add an opening sequence to start off the flick complete with a police chase, marriage proposal and a Unicorn (because there's no such thing as too much). Confused as to how this will all fit together? GOOD! Donate to find out!
THIS IS NOT A LOVE STORY. Thieves Die Alone is an action comedy that explores what happens when your soulmate is also your arch-enemy.
Centered on the whip-smart, charming and slightly psychopathic Jacqueline LeFaux, this film flips the script on the classic heist thriller. A professional thief who only works alone, Jackie sets her sights on her greatest job yet: stealing the famous Maharaja Diamond from the National Museum. Unfortunately her plans are foiled when she meets TJ Robespierre, a “homme-fatale” who is after the same thing.
What ensues is a high-octane game of cutthroat chess between two rivals who are so wrong for each other they might just be right.
Jacqueline LeFaux is one of the best thieves working the business. She's also one of the only women, an asset she uses to her advantage. A little makeup and a pair of heels make for an excellent disguise when police assume their suspect is a man.
After a successful robbery, Jackie sets her sights on her biggest job yet: stealing a 250 Million Dollar Diamond. Disguised as a security consultant, Jackie visits the museum to inspect the security before the heist. Here, she bumps into a cocky "artist" named TJ Robespierre who won’t leave her alone. The two flirt and Jackie agrees to a date.
That night, however, Jackie stands him up and instead breaks into the museum to steal the diamond. Unfortunately, TJ (who reveals himself to be an art thief, not an artist) did the same thing. Jackie and TJ nearly kill each other with the museum weapons on display, but impressed by each other's skills, they simultaneously continue their “date” as the diamond goes back and forth between them.
What happens next? Donate to find out!
As a kid, most of my days were spent pretending to be Peter Pan, Indiana Jones, or Sherlock Holmes. I wanted to be the hero and embark on grand adventures. In truth, I never really grew out of it. Directing movies is basically the same thing, but I get a budget and don’t have to use my mom’s couch as the pirate ship.
What I didn’t realize as a kid, though, was that all my favorite characters were men. Not to say there aren’t any great female characters in cinema, but especially when you look at action movies the pool gets pretty thin. Why is it that the girl always has to be the damsel in distress or the sidekick? In the few films that do have female heroines, more often than not you’ll find her dark and brooding, pushed into the role because of some trauma in her past, or simply gender swapped with a character that was written as a man.
Thieves Die Alone is your standard action comedy with one important difference. It’s seen from a woman’s perspective. I deliberately wrote this so the roles are inverted. Jackie is the hero and TJ is the femme-fatale. The woman gets to be the rogue, break the rules and meet her match. It’s a role you rarely see a woman get to play, but an important one. It is possible to be brave, ambitious, heroic and also a lady.
The films I want to make are meant to be entertaining, but those are the movies I think can change the world. A girl’s first impressions come from her favorite stories and if all she sees in theaters are damsels in distress and love interests, it’s no wonder there aren’t that many female directors or women running for president. I want to make popcorn movies that are just as high-octane, slick and stylish as every other great blockbuster. The difference is, I want those movies to star women.
So, let's change the world and blow stuff up!
Thieves Die Alone combines several different genres, taking the set pieces of an action adventure movie, the banter of a rom-com, and the conventions of a neo-noir thriller. It mixes them all together to create a fun-filled, high-energy romp that’s rarely seen in a short film.
Tonally, the film is hyperrealistic. The action and comedy are over the top, but the characters are ground in their own reality. Our premise, while ridiculous, is taken seriously (think Mr. and Mrs Smith, National Treasure, and Pirates of the Caribbean). The fighting -- while still lethal -- is played flirty with a sense of fun. It’s also sexy. There's an electricity between Jackie and TJ that pulses through the entire piece. For them, murder is just another form of foreplay. The combination gives the comedy an erotic shade of violence — it’s funny, but it’s also dangerous.
Stylistically, Thieves Die Alone is shot as a modern noir and evokes much of the iconography of that genre -- the heist, the femme fatale, the moody lighting -- but this iconography is turned on it’s head and given a “pop” aesthetic. Most importantly, the roles are gender flipped. The story unfolds from Jackie’s perspective while TJ fills the role of the homme-fatale. The shift is subtle, but unmistakable. Thieves Die Alone deliberately obscures the traditional framing of men and women on film. For example, men are typically photographed with low angles, creating the impression of power and dominance. Women are typically shot from above to highlight their vulnerability and “assets.” Not so here. The characters will be shot as equals, the framing shifting depending on who gains the upper hand.
Visually, the look of the film derives from classic noir thrillers; however, this is a stylized version of that. The camera is a character in its own right, constantly on the move and filled with energy. It has personality and uses techniques such as whip pans, interesting lens choices and crash zooms to get you into the mind-space of the characters and keep with the comic, punchy tone of the movie. Similarly in the edit, effects such as security camera footage, split-screens, and poppy titles will be used to add to the stylized feel we are going for.
It’s important to note that all of these stylistic flourishes will be driven by what is demanded from the story. The visuals should never overpower the narrative. Instead, they should be seamlessly integrated to best set the tone and bring the viewer into our world of Thieves.
Risks and challenges
LOL. If there weren’t risks and challenges, we wouldn’t be making a movie. The good news is, we do this for a living! Risks and challenges are just part of the gig.
Right now we have most of the production crew in place. We’re going through the casting process and will start pre-production in September. Our plan is to shoot in October (depending on the availability of our future actors), go through post in November and finish the film in December. If all sorts of hell rains upon us and there are production delays, we will let you know the updated schedule and keep you posted throughout the entire process!
For inquiries about becoming a financier of the film, or about ways to get involved, email me at: email@example.com
To see my work, visit: www.cassandrabrooksbank.comLearn about accountability on Kickstarter
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