Share this project


Share this project

Fool's Paradise: A Dark Fantasy's video poster

A dark fantasy about a lonely imaginary friend who discovers companionship in his new assignment: an equally lonely, abused little girl Read more

Asheville, NC Shorts
Share this project
pledged of $400 goal
seconds to go


This project was successfully funded on August 14, 2012.

A dark fantasy about a lonely imaginary friend who discovers companionship in his new assignment: an equally lonely, abused little girl

Asheville, NC Shorts
Share this project

About this project


Wow! I never anticipated such a great response and want to thank everyone who has contributed. For those of you who would still like to make a contribution, your funds will enable me to enter more film festivals as well as festivals that have higher entry fees. I appreciate everyone's tremendous support for Fool's Paradise. Thanks!

The Story:

Lu is an extremely lonely imaginary friend. He is treated poorly by all of his co-workers. For him, the world offers little or no meaning. At the beginning of the film, Lu is assigned to an equally lonely (and additionally abused) little girl named Mara who he instantly befriends. Lu and Mara quickly bond with one another, finding that their lives are less lonely when they are with each other.

Mara's mother passed away a few years ago and her father is now seeing Marcy, a new woman in his life. Marcy is evil incarnate. She wants the father to have no connection to his old life and past wife; however, Mara is a major obstacle to her goals. 

In the meantime, wanting to escape both from his world and get Mara out of hers, Lu proposes that Mara and he run away. She agrees. But it's not so simple.  Lu is suddenly informed that his assignment with Mara has been terminated. Not willing to accept this, he journeys back to Mara's world to find out why. 

Lu discovers something terrible: on the night of the anniversary of the death of Mara's mother, the father succumbs to the demands of the evil Marcy and takes his abuse to Mara one step further.  He murders her. And Lu is forever alone.

Check out the trailer to the film: 

The Director:

Kira Bursky is a high school filmmaker as well as a student in the motion picture arts program at Interlochen Academy of the Arts, a high school boarding school located in Interlochen, Michigan. In 2011, at the age of 15, she won both the Best Director and the Best Sound Design awards at the 48 Hour Film Project in Asheville, North Carolina for her film Let it Go. This year, her film Sleepyhead won the awards for both Best Actress and Best Makeup at this year's film festival.

In addition to All Around Artsy, her film production company, she is a co-partner in IA Productions with fellow Interlochen student, Mida Chu.  Together they have produced and co-directed five short films and one of their films, Wait In Silence, was recently selected for participation at the Ruby Mountain Film Festival in Elko, Nevada this September.

As a film artist, Kira makes films to scare, provoke, and instill wonder into her audiences by presenting them with her ideas and perspective of the world.

The Leads:

The lead role, Lu, is played by David Dietrich. Hailing originally from Cincinnati, Ohio, Dave moved to Asheville, North Carolina in the winter of 2009 under a tabloidal pretense. After some convalescence and respite from a hitherto dynamic lifestyle, he managed to settle languidly as freshly baked bread cooling on a formica countertop. Having assaulted the theatrical world previously in high school and college, in a series of lunges and oftentimes reprehensible cavortings, he longed once again to caress the stage with a candor both motherly and neurotic. The rest, as the Zen masters say, is now. He recently co-wrote and starred in a local independent feature comedy which is currently in post. Additionally, he has performed in local productions in Asheville at The Magnetic Field and with the Montford Park Players.  Dave was recently seen in Kira's previous film Sleepyhead in the sinister role of Charlie, the Circus Ring Leader.

Aislin Freya Pax is Mara. Aislin has been performing onstage since she was four years old and has been in over twenty-five productions including professional theatre and dance. A featured performer in local Asheville, North Carolina music videos, she can be seen in the Fame Jr. Choreography dvd for MTI's Broadway Junior which was shot in New York City. Last year, Aislin was cast in her first student film and is now driven to pursue more opportunities in front of the camera. Aislin recently starred in Kira's prior film, Sleepyhead, for the 48 Hour Film Project in the role of May, where she won the Best Actress award against a competitive field of adult actresses.

Richard Camuto returns to cinema in his fourth film with Kira as The Father. A talented actor, director, and writer, Richard has been seen on stage in Agnes of God, which he also co-wrote and co-directed, as well as Dearly Departed, Curious Savage, and the Barry Barton Production of the Beyond We Acting and Dance Series. Richard's other film roles include Richard Pineda in Sleepyhead, Tony in Let It Go, and Jonas in Retrospect, all of which were directed by Kira.  

Marcy is played by actress Crystal Craven. She can be seen on the upcoming Cinemax film series Banshee as well as Michael Landon, Jr's The Confession.  Crystal has appeared in commercials for Lowes, Nationwide, Coke Zero, Premier Health, My Select Rate, NASCAR, Casino del Sol, Blue Cross Blue Shield and EZ Tax Return and has modeled for Marc Jacobs in the Hottest Singles Spread for South Magazine.  As a host, she can be seen on The South TV.

Why You Should Contribute:

Kira Bursky is a 16 year old girl who is very eager to create films that originate stylistically and story-wise from her perspective as an imaginative young adult who is both fearful and fascinated about growing up. Through your contribution to this film, you are enabling her to delve into a self-created world that prior to this film could not be realized and shared with others. 

Films allow us to present our inner-most abstract thoughts into a not so abstract visual medium. Fool's Paradise presents Kira's viewpoint about people.  In particular, age does not limit the depth of a person.  People of widely varying ages may find more commonalities in each other than they do in others their own age.

Besides helping this film become a reality, here are a few additional reasons why your contribution is important:

  • The crew and cast rocks. Check out Sleepyhead, the film we made last month. (And note that we did this ALL in 48 hours. Imagine what we can do with more time!)
  • The director would love to share her vision with the world.
  • This film touches upon one of the most important social issues of our time: child abuse.
  • You will be helping a group of talented and dedicated artists do what they do best...create.

What Your Contribution Is For:

  • Film festival fees - the more contributed above the goal, the more festivals will be entered
  • Food and beverages for the cast and crew during the film shoot
  • Art direction (set design / props / costumes)
  • Other production expenditures

What You Will Receive In Return:

Besides the satisfaction of supporting a young, budding filmmaker, check out the awards listed on the right! On top of all of that, just know that you will be making a large group of creative people very happy. 


Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.

Ask a question


  • You selected
    Pledge $1 or more

    0 backers

    Honor and pride.

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $5 or more

    4 backers

    Honor and pride plus a digital copy of the film.

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $25 or more

    2 backers

    All of the above, plus a phone call from the director.

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $50 or more

    3 backers

    All of the above, plus a credit of special thanks in the credits.

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $100 or more

    1 backer

    All of the above, plus a Skype meeting with the director OR a personal video thanking you from the director.

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $250 or more

    1 backer

    First off, WOW. All of the above, plus, you will be listed in the credits as a producer of the film. And the director will meet you for coffee in Asheville or in Interlochen, Michigan where she spends the school year. We'll plan it and make it happen.

    Estimated delivery:
  • You selected
    Pledge $400 or more

    0 backers

    My goodness! Thanks for your generosity! All of the above plus you will be credited as executive producer and will receive a dvd copy of this film, along with Sleepyhead and Wait in Silence (a film I co-directed and co-wrote).

    Estimated delivery:

Funding period

- (20 days)