About this project
Haunted by the mysterious death of his 4-year-old sister, Elton brings her back to life 30 years later as an adult woman, with dire consequences.
"Ayla" is a film inspired by the loss of my sister when she was two, and the life as siblings we were never able to share. It's about what happens when you can't let go, how far into the dark you might reach to bring back someone you lost, and the ramifications that follow.
For years Elton has been haunted by the unexplained death of his sister. Her name was Ayla, but they used to call her A.
Taking inspiration from the Tibetan myth of Tulpa creation, the story of "Ayla" brings Elton to a place where what lived on only in the mind can once again become flesh and blood.
Born out of Elton’s obsession and desire for the life that should have been, his sister Ayla returns, still a child, but now with the body of a woman, a thought-form manifested in flesh.
As their bond strengthens, Ayla thrives even as Elton grows weaker, but now that he's found her, he's not letting go... even if it kills him.
Leading our cast are Nicholas Wilder ("Gut") as Elton and Tristan Risk ("American Mary", "The Editor") as Ayla, his sister returned. We couldn't think of two actors more better suited for this twisted matchup!
Also joining are cast are Miles Joris-Peyrafitte ("Valley of the Sasquatch") as Elton's estranged younger brother, and playing another key supporting role is the very talented Jennifer Lynn Warren ("American Horror Story").
Additionally, on board for two very special appearances in the film will be Andrew Sensenig ("Upstream Color", "Powers") and Bill Oberst Jr. ("Resolution", "Take this Lollipop"). The characters they'll be playing were written with them in mind and we're incredibly honored to have them joining the team!
Principal photography for "Ayla" is planned for this fall in the Seattle, Washington and the surrounding areas, on a low budget utilizing funds we raise here on Kickstarter and from private investors as well.
Why Kickstarter? Independent film is alive and well today because of platforms like Kickstarter. Because of crowdfunding, more and more truly independent movies are finding audiences all over the world and getting made every day. It's not just another way to fund your project anymore, it's a bridge between audiences and creators everywhere. The more funding we can raise here the more truly independent our production will be. Made by the crowd and for the crowd.
Where does the money go? With the exception of your reward costs and the fee charged by Kickstarter for making this possible (5%), and credit card processing fees (about 3-5%), EVERY dime raised here goes up on screen. Your contributions will be used to hire our cast and crew at an honest wage, secure locations, dress sets, rent production gear, cover FX costs (which will be mostly practical), and enable many, many other necessities from the start of production all the way through post-production and distribution.
What happens if we reach our $30,000 goal? We smile and keep on going to our first stretch goal of $40,000, which will enable us to expand our FX budget and increase our options for casting the remaining roles in the film. Every stretch goal we reach will unlock a new, complimentary reward for all backers $25 and up!
Born in Boston, Elias moved to New York to study film at the School of Visual Arts. His award-winning feature thriller "Gut" screened in 30 international film festivals and has been released on home video and VOD in 8 countries. Other produced projects include the feature thrillers "Dark" and "Phobia".
The October People (Production Company)
Founded by Matt Medisch, Jeremy Berg and John Portanova, their first feature "The Invoking" gained notice on the festival circuit, then made an even bigger splash on home video. As a result, Image Entertainment contracted them to produce the alien abduction thriller "The Device", and alongside distributor XLRator Media, they recently released the coming-of-age slasher "Found." Their latest film, the creature-feature "Valley of the Sasquatch", is currently screening in festivals worldwide.
Clayface Pictures (Production Company)
Formed by Elias ("Gut"), Clayface Pictures was behind the successfully crowd-funded feature thriller, "Dark", executive produced by Joe Dante ("Gremlins", "The Howling"). "Ayla" marks Clayface's second feature film production and the 4th feature film produced by Elias.
Chvad SB (Composer)
For over 20 years Chvad SB (Silber Records) has been performing and recording music, playing with a wide range of innovative and envelope-pushing bands like Things Outside The Skin, Tongue Muzzle, The Qualia, and recently, experimental music pioneers Controlled Bleeding. In addition he’s been doing film soundtracks that the folks at Fangoria find “discordant and discomforting.” Chvad recently scored the feature film "Gut" and contributed original music for the soundtrack of the horror feature "The Demolisher". He has already begun preliminary work on the score for "Ayla".
Additional Team Members:
Sean Burke (Co-producer)
Sean Evans (Marketing)
Brian Bernhard (BTS Videographer and Editor)
Rory Abel, Kalin Ivanov, Stuart MacKay-Smith (BTS Videographers)
Stephen Carroll, Brian Colby, Will Serber (Photographers)
Mike Pappa (Poster and Concept Designer)
Leisa Haddad (Model)
Risks and challenges
Producing a feature film is always a challenge whatever the budget, and "Ayla" will be no exception, which is why most of the work you'll see on the screen would not be possible without months of planning, development and pre-production.
We've worked this way before on previous feature films and we'll do it again this time. Every production for us is an opportunity to set the stakes higher and take it to the next level as we build on past experiences and open the door to new ones.
Over 9 months have been spent so far in the planning and development of this project, building collaborations, revising the script, and refining our battle plan for not just production and post-production, but for successful marketing and distribution of this project.
We will not stop until this film is completed and brought to life, and you can rest assured that when it's finished you won't soon forget it, because this isn't just about making a film, it's about making something that's a sum of all its parts, the whole team and all of you behind the project, something that will exceed the breadth and grasp of all of us individually and will live on as a unique and purposeful film that all of us can be proud of.
If you have questions, please drop us a line.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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