About this project
INTIMATE SEMAPHORES is a collection of three short films, written/directed/produced by T.J. Misny. The three films are separate stories, much like a collection of short fiction, however they have some connective tissue that would make them ideal to watch together. The dramatic/comedic stories explore the lives of artistic young New Yorkers who find their creative pursuits coming into direct conflict with other aspects of their lives. These characters each encounter strange and surreal obstacles, both internal and external while striving to actualize their true selves.
All three short films were shot in the summer of 2012 over the course of an eleven day shoot in New York. The running time of all three films together will likely be 50+ minutes, around the length of an hour long TV show.
HOW WAS THE PROJECT FINANCED IN THE FIRST PLACE?
The lions share of the funds for INTIMATE SEMAPHORES were self-raised by T.J. Misny over the previous 18 months by taking as much freelance filmmaking work as humanly possible as a cameraman, director, editor or sometimes all three. T.J. shot everything from web spots and in-house content for Fortune 500 companies, to web series episodes, short films, a low-budget feature film, music videos, documentaries, weddings, concerts, runway shows, fashion editorials, performances, conferences, EPK material, parties, exercise videos, product demos, focus groups, nightclub promos, a clam chowder eating competition, a demo reel for a grade school basketball referee and almost everything in between. The temporary motto of Never Turn Down Work has taken his lens from inside maximum security prisons to billion dollar hedge fund managers offices to backstage at New York Fashion Week and has given him glimpses into hundreds of worlds.
However, even though INTIMATE SEMAPHORES is finished with our eleven days of Principal Photography, there is much more work that needs to be done.
WHAT DO YOU NEED THIS MONEY FOR?
One of the major expenses is a day of additional shooting. Inclement weather kept us from getting two important exterior scenes in two of the different films and an additional shoot date is essential to tell these stories completely.
The second major expense is post production. We need to hire a sound mixer and dialogue editor to make sure the film sounds dynamic and fully realized with crisp sound effects, rich atmosphere and properly layered music. We also will need some graphic retouching to correct small mistakes, from a stain on a shirt to lettering on a car.
T.J. will continue to raise money via freelance work to pay for color correction, film festival submission fees, commissioning the musical score, building a website for the film and other expenses.
WHAT ARE THESE THREE FILMS ABOUT AND WHO IS IN THEM?
HELBERGER IN PARADISE: A New York City DJ (Kate Lyn Sheil, "Sun Don't Shine") stealthily returns to her suburban home town to attend her first love's funeral and make good on a bizarre promise. All that stands in her way is an obsessively moralistic cab driver (Musto Pelinkovicci, "The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby").
CAKE: When a stand-up comic (Jocelin Donahue, "House of the Devil") begins dating a successful pastry chef (Chioke Nassor, "Minor/Major"), she doggedly attempts to conquer her long-held, irrational phobia of cake.
HIGH AND DRY: A privileged photographer (Ariane Labed, "Alps", "Attenberg") learns that she needs to cry genuine, cathartic tears in order to keep from going blind, a pursuit which alienates and upsets those around her including her musician boyfriend (Keith Poulson, "Somebody Up There Likes Me") who is grappling with depression.
KEY CREW MEMBERS
Producer, Ryan Lavalette: Ryan Lavalette has logged over a dozen credits working in production on shows such as The Whitest Kids U’ Know, Onion Sports Dome, Onion News Network and Cinema Verite in addition to the feature films This Must Be the Place and Wanderlust. He recently wrapped work on the critically acclaimed and Emmy-nominated FX series Louie, having just finished production on its third season.
Producer, Feifei Ling: Chinese born producer Feifei Ling has worked on a variety of production teams, from the satirical Onion news & sports programs, to network dramas such as JJ Abrams’ Person of Interest, to the critically acclaimed series Louie on FX. She has also worked on the Untitled Eugene Mirman Project for Comedy Central, as well as numerous comedy pilots, where she has teamed up with the Gregory Brothers, Armando Iannucci and Andrew Gurland.
Director of Photography, Adam Newport-Berra: Adam Newport-Berra has earned dozens of credits around the globe for award winning narrative short and feature films, music videos, documentaries, and commercials. He recently shot the feature film FIRST WINTER which premiered in competition at the 2012 Tribeca Film Festival. His work on the short film GABI was awarded Best Cinematography at the 2012 First Run Film Festival; the film is also an official selection at Tribeca. His work can be seen at www.adamnewportberra.com
WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO WITH THESE FILMS? HOW WILL PEOPLE SEE THEM?
The goal is to distribute the films online in 2013, while playing the film festival circuit and possibly booking a small theatrical run in New York City, giving T.J. the momentum to shoot his first feature film later in 2013.
Thank you for your consideration and support in the completion of this project! I look forward to sharing the final films with you later in the year!
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