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Type A math teacher, Fiona Franzen, is thrust into teaching 6th grade sex-ed, and forced to re-examine her definition of success.
Type A math teacher, Fiona Franzen, is thrust into teaching 6th grade sex-ed, and forced to re-examine her definition of success.
92 backers pledged $5,290 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

Sexpert Franzen // a short film project video thumbnail
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$5,290

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We did it! With your help, we reached our funding goal of $4,500 in 26 days! 

Thank you so much for your belief in this project. We are truly grateful for your generosity and support. 

Our original goal was an estimate of the bare essentials. Now that we have those covered, we’re dreaming a little bigger and reaching for a stretch goal! If you know people who are still interested in contributing and being a part of this, please know it’s not too late!

Below are a few wish-list, stretch goal items that will improve the production quality of our film:

• Zeiss Cinema Lens Set: $373-$411

 

• Prop rentals and purchasing: $150-300

We will begin submitting to film festivals later this fall. Submission costs vary, but given our ambitions, we’re looking at $500-$750 in festival submission fees. We want to reiterate how absolutely thrilled and grateful we are for your support. We could not have met our funding goal without you. Thank you!      

THE FILM

Meet Fiona Franzen: young aspiring math teacher who has lived her life according to an equation: school + job + fiance = success. When Fiona is thrust into teaching 6th grade sex-ed (thanks to Mr. Kraby's well timed fishing trip), she begins to question everything. A short heartfelt comedy about growing up. 

Storybook Illustration of Fiona Franzen by Benjamin Mackey
Storybook Illustration of Fiona Franzen by Benjamin Mackey

 

Health Education Poster by Benjamin Mackey
Health Education Poster by Benjamin Mackey

THE PLAN

We have cast our entire film, and have built an exciting creative team. We will be filming in Iowa for 6 days, June 17th - 22nd. 

HOW YOU CAN HELP

We need to raise money to cover production costs (camera and audio rentals, lodging, location fees, props, art direction, and craft services). Below is a rough budget breakdown:

- Camera Equipment $1300

- Audio  $1200

- Location fees $1000 

- Art Direction $600

- Craft Services $400

Any amount helps and we are grateful for your generosity!

MEET THE TEAM

"The next wave of gifted, young filmmakers."- TriBeca Film (30 Under 30)

First Production Meeting
First Production Meeting

 KAITLYN BUSBEE/Director

 Kaitlyn Busbee is a video producer at the University of Iowa Children’s Hospital, as well as directing, producing and shooting projects as a freelance filmmaker and photographer. She was selected as one of 50 students worldwide for the renowned Telluride Film Festival Student Symposium, where she studied with Alexander Payne, Wim Wenders, Werner Herzog, Ken Burns, Joshua Marston, Lynne Ramsay, and Tilda Swinton. Tribeca’s prestigious 30 Under 30 Film Festival selected her as one the next wave of gifted young filmmakers for her feature, “These Hopeless Savages." This film, which she shot, edited and co-directed with Sean Lewis, has now played in over 30 film festivals around the world: including the Twin Cities Film Festival, Snowdance Film Festival, Anchorage International Film Festival, Orlando Film Festival, Indianapolis International Film Festival, Julien Dubuque International Film Festival, Wild Rose Independent Film Festival, and it's premiere festival, Mission Creek. “Savages” has garnered numerous nominations and awards, including Kaitlyn’s recent nomination for Best Director from the Universal Film Festival. "These Hopeless Savages" has been acquired by Fandependent Films to premiere and stream through their services starting on May 20, 2016. In additional personal projects, Kaitlyn has directed, shot and produced a wide range of dance videos including (“mirrors are just water specified”, “Introspect”), music artist videos (Caroline Smith, Ha Ha Tonka, Tilly and the Wall), and narrative short films (“Sad Dad”, “Laundromat”). Kaitlyn was Producer and Locations Manager for Bluebox Limited’s MTV Pilot “Spread”. She also was hired as a Director of Photography and Editor for the internationally distributed film “Molly’s Girl”, available on Netflix. Her most recent film, "The Legend in My Heart", she shot in Guangzhou, China with the University of Iowa International Writing Program. This feature-length documentary follows four renowned American artists—two writers, a choreographer, and a composer—as they travel to Guangzhou, China, to engage disabled and non-disabled populations by collaborating and creating together.

MARIA VORHIS/Writer, Fiona Franzen

 Maria is a writer/performer, teaching artist, and filmmaker based in Chicago. She has toured her one woman show, “Are You There, George?” to fourteen venues in six cities, including Iowa City, Des Moines, Minneapolis, and Chicago, and was awarded “#1 Newbie of MN Fringe” by vita.mn, the Twin Cities’ guide to local entertainment. She is currently planning a fall tour, partnering with organizations that empower young women to engage in healthy discourse about body image and identity. Film credits include “Sad Dad” and “These Hopeless Savages”, for which she was awarded Best Supporting Actress by The Wild Rose Film Festival. Maria has written and performed her stories at Was The Word, This Much Is True, The Bucket Show, Truth or Lie, Fictlicious, Do Not Submit, The Book Cellar, and recently published her essay, “Afternoons, or How to Avoid the 3:00pm Slump” in CCLAP.

JOHN BAKER/Director of Photography 

 A born and bred Iowa boy, John's love of film began early. Before his 10th birthday, he told his mother, "I want to be a photographer when I grow up." And he hasn't put down a camera since. As John's passion for visual storytelling developed from photography to cinematography, he brought with him a strong foundation of understanding the principles of light and composition. As many directors before him, John believes that a truly powerful message comes from a truly powerful image.

BRUCE BALES/Camera Operator

 Bruce James Bales is a filmmaker and the owner of DEFT, a regional production company focused on producing images, videos, and films. He is currently working on a short film titled "Face Thy Father" and a series of seven silent films with lighting wizard and prime collaborator, Jason "Moppy" Reed. Bruce cut his production teeth with rollerblades on his feet in the Quad Cities and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, working on film sets, music videos, and rollerblading videos. He eats limes regularly and is based in Des Moines.

BENJAMIN MACKEY/Artist

 Benjamin Mackey is the co-creator and artist of the ongoing series SAINTS from IMAGE Comics. He has been working as a freelance illustrator for various books, magazines, and films over the past six years. He received his BFA in Painting from the University of Iowa. Benjamin's work draws inspiration from Catholic mythology and the Italian Renaissance/Baroque periods, reworking compositions and subjects in the light of contemporary concerns. He lives in Arizona and enjoys a damn fine cup of coffee.

TAYLOR YOCOM/Art Department

Taylor Yocom received her BFA in Photography from the University of Iowa in May 2015. She is an Iowa based artist and her photography and collages explore societal and personal relationships through everyday objects and printed matter. Her striking photo series, Guarded, sheds light on rape culture through portraiture of college women holding what they use to protect themselves from sexual assault on walks home at night and has appeared internationally in renowned publications such as Buzzfeed, USA Today, and the US and UK versions of the Huffington Post. She is involved with youth arts education through Art Force Iowa and the Des Moines Art Center and will be starting her MFA in Photography at Washington University in St. Louis this fall.

PAST PROJECTS

"Are You There, George?"

A one-woman show about a 12-year-old girl's quest to find meaning...and boobs. Voted "Number 1 Newbie of MN Fringe" by vita.mn 

areyoutheregeorge.weebly.com

"The Legend in My Heart"

 

A documentary film following four renowned American artists—two writers, a choreographer, and a composer—as they travel to Guangzhou, China, to engage disabled and non-disabled populations by collaborating and creating together. The film ends with a rousing performance of song, dance, and poetry. 

https://www.facebook.com/thelegendinmyheart 

"These Hopeless Savages"

An independent feature film made by WORKING GROUP PICTURES shot across America. 

http://www.thesehopelesssavages.com/

"Sad Dad"

   

A web series made by WORKING GROUP PICTURES: Meet Gracie and Norm. Now that Gracie’s an adult, Norm is ready to be her dad. But is she ready to be his daughter? 

http://saddadtheseries.weebly.com/

Risks and challenges

Our biggest challenge will be timing. We want to make this film and tell this story as soon as we can, but there may be production delays along the way. Murphy's Law is a close friend to the process of filmmaking and you have to be prepared to think on your feet while on a tight schedule.

As filmmakers we understand that obstacles are a given; we have built a creative team that views such challenges as opportunities. We've coordinated over 40 people's schedules to begin filming on June 17th, and though we are providing personal funds, your generous contributions will help us bridge the gap and make this dream into a reality.

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Funding period

- (30 days)