I cannot express how crazy, hectic, and exciting this weekend has been so far. Here are some of the highlights:
- After a week of intense editing of my winter film, I had a good in-class critique, then rushed to the airport and barely caught my flight to LA
- My mom drove up from San Diego to come to the Emerson LA Film Showcase
- We saw Gwen Stafani when we were eating dinner in a restaurant in Beverly Hills
- I got to catch up with many old friends, classmates, and teachers, as well as do some networking with alums
- We got to share 10,000 Trees with a wonderful audience at the Writer’s Guild Theater
- Last, but certainly not least, Sarah Ginsburg and I won the “Take Action Hollywood” award for social action filmmaking, and we got to take home a giant-sized check for $5,000!!!
It was an amazing experience to be part of, and I felt so honored that we won the award. I can’t believe that almost exactly a year ago, Sarah G. and I were running a Kickstarter campaign and flying to Portland to shoot our film. I feel like so much has happened in this past year, and I’m incredibly grateful for all the opportunities I have been given and the people who have supported me.
Now Sarah G. and I are off to Portland, to screen 10,000 Trees at the Portland Oregon Women’s Film Festival! It will be the first time that it’s screened in a theater with my entire family present. I’m just as excited to participate in the festival as I am to see my grandparents and celebrate the occasion. I can’t wait!
For those of you waiting patiently to watch this film, thank you so much for continuing to support us. The film is almost ready to share with the world, and we promise you will be among the first to see it. Here’s a quick recap of what we have been up to lately. Sarah Ginsburg’s BA class had two screenings at the end of the semester. I was able to fly in to Boston and be in the audience at the first screening in the beautiful new Kevin Bright Screening Room at Emerson College. The Paramount Center just opened last year, and it was an amazing venue for our first screening on a big movie theater screen. The film brought tears to everyone’s eyes…literally. I looked around in the middle of the movie and there was not a dry eye in the house. My fear that this story wouldn’t resonate with people was proven totally wrong. I was approached by many people I’d never met after the screening who told me that my grandfather was incredibly inspirational in his own humble way.
After the Emerson screenings, Sarah Ginsburg graduated from Emerson College, moved apartments, and escaped to Europe on a well deserved vacation. In the mean time, I have been preparing materials for film festival submissions. I’m consulting with Emerson faculty, film festival programmers, and experienced filmmakers to help plan the best distribution strategy for our film. I would love nothing more than to see this film come to a theater near you, so we are doing our best to make that happen.
DVDs and digital downloads will be available shortly. I can’t wait to share 10,000 Trees with you! It will be well worth the wait, trust me 😉
So here’s the latest:
After a few weeks of tediously transcribing and logging every moment of footage (we have nearly 200 pages of dialogue), my cramped fingers finally get a break from typing and Sarah G gets her turn to kick it into high gear. She has officially secluded herself from the world until 10,000 Trees is edited to perfection. Literally turning herself into a hermit, she deactivated her facebook account, packed her bags, and is escaping to the cape for a weekend of intense focus. She’s truly the best co-producer/director/editor I could have ever asked for…she does it all, and works so hard!
I am getting super anxious to see 10,000 Trees come together, and I can’t wait to share it with an audience for the first time. I booked my ticket to Boston for our first work in progress screening at Emerson’s BFA/BA Film Showcase on April 28th. Though Sarah G and I plan to continue editing into the summer, the screening at Emerson will be an amazing opportunity to gauge people’s reactions to the story, gather feedback, and build an audience.
Another tidbit I’d like to share is this behind the scenes video of our helicopter shoot…that’s right, I said it, we rented a HELICOPTER! Sarah G. was the brave one who actually flew in it while it had no doors on, hanging out the side with the camera…gives me chills just thinking about that actually… Anyway, check out this video and see for yourself!
More to come soon!
Whoever said “money doesn’t grow on trees” was quite wrong. Today, 10,000 Trees officially met it’s fund raising goal on Kickstarter with the help of over one hundred donors!!!! Thanks to each and every one of you, we reached this milestone with 9 days to spare. Our fund raising time is not out yet, so we are doing a final push by offering a new prize called “The Little Sprout” to anyone who increases their donation by $8. The extra funds will give us some wiggle room with our tight budget. Other noteworthy occurrences: the River Gods valentine’s day fundraiser was a big hit and pushed us over the $5,000 mark. Also, ReadyMade featured a lovely interview with Sarah Ginsburg about our film on their blog. I think we have cause to celebrate tonight.
As my friend Adam once said “filmmaking is never truly independent”. This film would not be possible without a lot of helping hands along the way. To everyone who has reached out and supported us, thank you, thank you, and thank you again!
Going to Oregon on March 7th, will be a deeply personal experience for me. Just as I have grown and changed over the years, I have seen my grandfather’s land transform. I look forward to spending time with him and my other Oregonian family as we celebrate his tremendous achievement. A dream of mine I hope to make come true is to plant a seedling along side my grandfather. Planting season is a very specific time of year and I have never had the opportunity to participate myself. My grandfather is a source of inspiration in my life, and I want to make a small contribution to his cause. Hopefully one day I will be able to bring my own children to admire my grandfather’s forest, and say I planted that one!