BLACK EARTH: THE MOVIE
Jack is a lonely metal head who lives in a small town on the edge of a deep birch forest. The townspeople fear the forest, believing it to be full of spirits. Jack dreams of a world outside this town, full of music. Nobody in the town gives a hoot about him or his dreams. He works at a bar. He is stuck.
Then Mimi appears.
No one knows where Mimi came from, including Mimi. She's searching for answers. She's on the run. She thinks Jack may be someone who can help.
Superstition and ignorance are their enemies, represented by The Big One, the enormous mayor turned eccentric spiritual gang leader and her nefarious partner, The Sheriff.
Like many of us, Jack and Mimi both want to belong. Jack wants to leave his small town home and to join a metal band, but his lack of self-confidence has rendered him inert, while Mimi desperately searches for a home she's long forgotten.
It is my hope that this film will have a positive impact on anyone who feels stuck, or homesick for a place that they can't recall.
The story is one that I’ve been writing in different forms for two years now. I’ve become deeply attached to the characters, who are all manifestations of different qualities (good and bad) that I see in myself. I have finished the script and put together a crew of friends, all hard working people whom I trust to give their all.
BLACK EARTH: PROOF of CONCEPT
I'm launching this campaign to finance the Black Earth Proof of Concept. This will be a STAND ALONE SHORT FILM that focuses on Jack and Mimi's tumultuous first meeting, and their subsequent interaction. Much of the short will be lifted directly from the feature screenplay.
The Proof of Concept will be shot over four days in June, in Wisconsin. I will then edit the film back home in Los Angeles. I've already begun recording music, and will continue to work on the soundtrack during and after the editing process. I will then work with Director of Photography Christopher Ripley on the color grade. By the end of the Summer, the Proof of Concept short will be ready to submit to festivals!
** The Proof of Concept short film will then be used to raise funds for the final feature length version of Black Earth. **
I like Metal music. Metal music is a critical part of who I am. It’s the music of the other - the outcast. It stirs up something positive in the deepest parts of my soul, a warm chaos that propels me to work and to create. This is a joy that I strive to share with other's through film. Jack is an outsider in this small town. Metal is his one source of happiness. Guitar gives him purpose.
I want to create a very specific sonic atmosphere to set the tone of the film. Music plays a large role in Jack and Mimi's relationship, and I feel it is important that I take the helm and create the soundtrack myself. It's going to be so much fun I can't possibly explain. Music and moving image...
Growing up I spent my summers in the beautiful countryside of Wisconsin. Specifically, a region in the Southwestern corner of the state known as the Driftless Area. There is a spiritual depth to this unassuming land along the mighty Mississippi River. The Driftless Area provides the perfect backdrop to Jack and Mimi's story.
Who knows what fantastical secrets this place holds, how many phantasms and beasts take to these hills each night? I'm willing to bet they're friendly.
Jack grew up on a Ranch in New Mexico. He began acting at the age of 16. He's a hard working, talented young man and a good friend of mine. He's appeared in such films as Palo Alto, and The Nice Guys. He does play a mean guitar, and his aim is true.
Born in Belarus, raised in Vegas. Dasha is a human girl who possesses a quick wit and a fantastic sense of humor. She co-wrote and stars in Wobble Palace as well as the hilarious Mocku-biopic The Darby Bonarsky Story. Rabbits, watch your tails around this one.
Riley Sweeney Lynch
Risks and challenges
Shooting in Wisconsin will surely be beautiful, but we'll need to be wary of the weather. Thunderstorms are frequent in the Midwest throughout the summer. We will have plan our travel and shoot schedules carefully.
Thankfully our team is made up of professionals, each having worked on locations far more inclement than Wisconsin. We are well prepared and eager to get to work!
Of course, a major challenge will be finding further financing for the feature length version of Black Earth. This process will be infinitely easier with a Proof of Concept film ready to show. I will work tirelessly to see this project all the way through.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)