Independent Feature Film Carving a Life Will Begin Production in San Diego in October
In spite of complications created by the closing of San Diego’s Film Commission, a newly created woman-based production company, Life In Reels, is forging ahead with plans to make their first feature film, “Carving a Life”.
San Diego, CA (PRWEB) September 11, 2013
Lisa Bruhn, Screenwriter, Terry Ross, Director, and Sandy Orsmond, Associate Producer, are networking throughout the San Diego film community to raise funds and gain permits to produce this independent film, expected for release to film festivals in February 2014. Local independent theaters will be premiering “Carving A Life” in Spring of 2014.
Terry Ross is the owner and director of Acting Professionally, a film and television acting studio, and has been in front of or behind the camera for over 20 years. Terry has a M.F.A. degree in directing and has directed several short films and showcases. Lisa Bruhn, screenwriter of Carving A Life, is an electronics sales executive for 20+ years. This is Lisa’s first script, written to showcase the talents of her actor son Tyler Bruhn. Sandy Orsmond-Holmes, Associate Producer, has worked as Stage Manager for San Diego Danceworks, Thunder River Theatre Company, Rocky Mountain Institute, and the Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festival.
The story is a relatable and heartfelt drama, with a love story woven about 25 year old Mitch who, after experiencing a shattering tragedy as a child, falls prey to addiction and a life out of control. The film chronicles his struggle to overcome haunting memories in his past and creating a life for himself and his family in the present.
Terry, Lisa, and Sandy, are working closely with San Diego Film Consortium’s Jodi Cilley, who, in the wake of the San Diego Film Commission closing, is helping San Diego filmmakers obtain permits.
A Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign has been launched to help raise funds to make this independent film:http://kck.st/13gD56b and a Meet the Cast and Crew event is planned for Saturday, September 14, from 7 to 10 pm at Latitude 33 Brewery in Vista, CA. Entrance to the event is free with any amount pledged to the Kickstarter campaign or $10.00 at the door. Exclusive movie posters will be handed out, 5 free beer tastes available to each guest (if over 21), a BBQ dinner, and surprise entertainment!
Life in Reels Productions, LLC is a San Diego independent film company producing Carving a Life.http://www.lifeinreelsproductions.com
Terry Ross has been a faculty member of the M.F.A. Professional Actor Training Program at the Old Globe and theater departments at University of San Diego, San Diego State University, and University of California, Davis and received her acting training from San Francisco’s renowned American Conservatory Theater. She holds an M.A. in Education from Stanford University and an M.F.A. in directing from the University of California, Davis.http://www.actingprofessionally.com.
Lisa Bruhn works full time as a sales and marketing executive in the electronics industry and sparked an interest in screenwriting several years ago. Lisa also has a travel blog, http://www.TrenchCoatTravels.com, and has written travel articles for the San Diego Reader, an independent newspaper in San Diego.
Sandy Orsmond-Holmes, Associate Producer has worked as a Stage or Production Manager for San Diego Danceworks, Thunder River Theatre Company, Rocky Mountain Institute, the Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festival, and has worked with the Royal Brunei family. Sandy also studied Electronic Engineering in South Africa.
Tyler Bruhn began his acting career at 13, inspired by the Harry Potter films. Tyler took a break from acting to focus on high school studies and athletics and was in Carlsbad High School Broadcasting program led by Doug Green, where he learned a variety of skills on camera and behind the scenes.
Tyler’s IMDB Page: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm1758716/?ref_=fn_al_nm_1
For more information contact:
Terry Ross, 415-690-0887
Lisa Bruhn, 760-583-7081
Follow the film at
Pre-production on the feature film, “Carving A Life” is a in full swing! Much of the film has been cast with Acting Professionally students including Tyler Bruhn, as the lead “Mitch”, Sandi Todorovic as “Eric” his best friend, Lisa Winans as “Rebecca”, Mitch’s stepmom, Max Baroudi, as “Young Mitch”, Jay Jee as “Dr Johnson” and many more.
Fundraising for the film is already in place and a kickstarter video will be filmed at the Acting Professionally studio in Media Arts Center on August 25, with a public release the first week in September. A fundraising party will be held at Latitude 33 on September 14. Funds raised will go to pay cast and crew under the SAG-Indie Ultra Low Budget contract, equipment, insurance and food.
Many locations have already been secured including an art studio, a woodcarving shop, and several schools and restaurants.
The script has undergone three re-writes and will be reviewed on August 29 by Jen Grisanti, a writers consultant, formerly with Spelling Television, CBS/Paramount.
The film follows young artist, Mitch Martindale, whose life seems to be on the rise. He is a wood carver whose work is drawing recognition and he has a beautiful wife and a child on the way. Although his life seems to be coming together, he is haunted by his past – an accident which killed his mother when he was ten. To avoid painful memories and emotions, he turns to alcohol. The film explores whether or not love for his art, wife, and unborn child will be enough to turn his life around.
From BlueCat Screenplay Competition Analysis:
“Mitch is a very emotionally broken, yet sympathetic individual. A motherless teen who grows up to become an alcoholic. His journey towards fatherhood is a bumpy one, “filled with pot holes.”
“The story has classic elements, including a boy losing his mother, a neglectful father, early problems with alcohol, a loving wife, an enabling best friend, a young hospital roommate who overdoses, entering rehab, and becoming a father.”
The film’s message is positive – that with determination and commitment – love and proper treatment can change lives. It is our hope that it will touch – and perhaps alter – the lives of young people affected by addiction.
With the red carpet screening of our 48 hour film only 24 hours away, it’s hard to believe what we were able to accomplish over the weekend of July 12 – 14! At 7:00 pm on July 12, the writing team of Lisa Bruhn, Giovanni Tejada , Aaron Bornstein and myself received our genre “Horror!” At 7:30 p.m. we received the elements that had to be included the film: a garden hose, the character, Margaret McCarthy, Interpreter, and the line “You know what I mean?”
Fortified by a quick meal of chicken and coleslaw, we went to work! By 2:30 a.m. we had come up with our script – A director of a steampunk acting troupe currently performing “Faust” – a play about a man who sells his sole to the devil – “awakens” to discover he is already dead and in hell, haunted by the sins of his past!
We delivered the script via our private facebook page to the actors and director of photography, Paul Mathew Giret, who at 4:00 a.m. began his shot list. At 7:00 a.m., actors, crew and make-up artists arrived. While make-up was being applied, we went about our first shot around 9:00 a.m. – and started a full cast shoot around 11:00 a.m.
Shooting went well into the wee hours of Sunday morning, wrapping at 4:00 a.m. For many, this had been more than a 24 hour day without sleep! Actors went home to recover and several us of stayed overnight at the shooting location.
Editing was completed at 6:50, leaving us less than 40 minutes to get to the drop off location (which normally would be over 40 minutes away). Our film was turned in, on time, at 7:28 leaving two minutes to spare!!
Despite little sleep, long days, the time constraint – and pressure, the 48 hour is a fun and valuable experience for all involved! Perhaps most importantly, a film actually gets completed! And there is great satisfaction in what can be accomplished in so little time! For some actors, it is the first time they have ever been on set and that is an invaluable learning experience! The 48 pushes ones creative boundaries and it is a revelation what can do in such a short period of time
Enjoy our poster and trailer!
Final Preparations are being made to kickoff our 3rd Annual 48 Hour Film Festival! We’ve secured the location, equipment, actors and crew, food, writing team and are ready to receive our genre at 7:00 p.m. tomorrow when team members will pick it up at the kickoff! Then the writing begins, and once finished, is distributed to the cast, (if history is any indication it’s around 2:30 a.m.) and we’re on set at 7:00 a.m. for make-up, set dressing, rehearsal and an approximate lst shot at 9:00 a.m.! Last year we shot until midnight and with 15 actors and approximately the same number of crew members this year, we may go that late again! We will be editing throughout and then need to get our completed film in by 7:30 p.m. on Sunday, July 14. Not alot of sleep, but alot of creativity ahead!
What do you need to have a successful online presence – one that works for you – wherever you are?
A website (your name.com) – which is absolutely necessary, but only the starting point. You must have online media.
Because of many factors – a shaky economy, low budget productions and time crunches, many producers and casting directors are no longer holding in-person auditions for first reads. Instead they pre-screen actors by going online without you even knowing it – often in this order:
A breakdown service utilized by talent agents and casting
Google—which should lead to your website
YouTube or Vimeo
Every actor absolutely must have digital media of their acting work available online as audition opportunities can arise for roles they haven’t submitted for!
How is this possible? On occasion, audition slots remain open after a casting director has chosen all the actors they personally know who would be right for the role – those empty slots have to filled somehow – and this is where the online detective work comes in.
The casting director will go through headshots of actors they have received but don’t know and then go looking online to look at their digital media to see if it matches what they were looking for.
What if you don’t have easily accessible online media? You are automatically out of consideration. Having a profile on a breakdown site (actors access, la casting, etc) a headshot and resume – and a website – are not enough! You must have a reel, or at least some footage of you acting on-screen, that can be easily located through a google search of your name.
Having this media presence works for you not only in getting a first audition but can be helpful in the callback process as well as the audition team goes online to find other footage to compare against the in-person audition.
But be certain that the media is high quality! In my upcoming blog, I will give you guidelines for putting together an excellent online-reel.
Make sure you have a current profile with one of the breakdown services (I recommend Actors Access) which includes headshot, resume and media or go with IMDb pro
Have a website which is your name (even if you have to use your middle name or initial because that domain is taken) Your website should of course include headshot, resume and media (reel)
Post your reel to You Tube
Then let your online presence get to work for you!
This will be our third year participating in San Diego’s 48 hour film festival! I added this to the advanced class curriculum to give advanced students the opportunity to experience “guerrilla filmmaking” at its finest and to receive IMDb credit. I’m happy to say that both 48 hour entries, “Baited Breath” (2011) and just recently “Wedding Hi-Jinx (2012) have received IMDb credit! This is not an automatic credit as 48 hour films are considered part of a contest and therefore not eligible for IMDb.
In order to receive IMDb credit, it is necessary to be considered for – or accepted into – a film festival.
This year we have the largest team so far – nearly 30 team members – split pretty evenly between cast and crew! Having worked the previous two years with a skeleton crew, I’m excited to see what results having a larger crew will deliver! We are busy with meetings and scouting locations, leading up to the big weekend July 12 – 14. We receive our genre (from 14 possible) around 7:30 on Friday night, giving us 48 hours to write, film, edit, score and add credits to our 4- 7 minute film. It’s a crazy weekend with no sleep but plenty of energy and creativity – and miraculously, at the end, a finished movie!!
GUEST WORKSHOP WITH SIDNEY FRANKLIN
SUNDAY, JULY 14, 2013
Kids: 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
Teens: 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Sidney Franklin has been a frequent guest instructor at Acting Professionally, both in classes and for the Summer Camps! We are pleased that Sidney will be returning to teach a casting workshop on Sunday, July 14!
Sidney just completed “Dumb Girls”, with Sandra Vergara of “Fright Night” and Josh Kelly of “Transformers”. His film credits also include lead roles in “Pass Out”, “Boy from the Bronx” and “Undercover Kids; he has had a recurring role on Fox’s “Watch Over Me” and has appeared as a co-star on “Hank, “The Ex-List and “Sons of Anarchy” and others.
He has assisted San Diego casting director, D.Candis Paule and will bringing his unique perspective on the business from the point of view of actor, director and casting.
Cost of workshop: $20.00 (in addition to regular class tuition)
The workshop will take the place of our regular Sunday class on July 14 during the regularly scheduled class time.
FINDING YOUR “BRAND” WORKSHOP
SUNDAY, JULY 14 – 4 – 7 P.M.
COST $20.00 (plus regular class price)
Finding your brand and why you should – with Sandi Buehner!
This workshop introduces the idea of branding yourself as an actor. For years you are told, “Don’t brand yourself or you will be typecast.” While this is true for A-list actors, it is not true for actors just starting out. In fact, just the opposite is true. Unless you know what your brand is, how can you expect to sell it? And let’s face it, you, the actor, are the product and you definitely want buyers. This workshop teaches you how to recognize your niche by various means through breakdowns, interviews, and bookings. It teaches you what to do with that knowledge. With examples of how to promote your brand via headshots, you will leave this workshop with a better idea of what is needed in your headshots, how many headshots looks you will need and what those shots can do for you.
With experience across the board, Sandi Buehner brings experience and credits as executive producer for Opening Door Productions and Elusive Dream Productions, as a casting assistant for several commercials, a pilot, a union film, and a casting director for two short films. For a brief time, she had a glimpse into life as a voice over, commercial and theatrical agent. As owner of Actor Insight, Sandi helped several non-actors get their start into the acting business and helped several actors move forward in their careers. While not an acting coach or a manager, Sandi teaches the business side of the acting business.
Other experience includes: serving on the board of the San Diego Film Commission Foundation and co-owner of Actors For Reel, an audition technique class.
What do you do if your child comes to you and says, “I want to be an actor! Do you try and talk them out of it? Warn them of the risks and the pitfalls and how hard it is to make it? Dismiss the comment as something that will pass?
In my 20 years of teaching child actors, I have rarely encountered a student with the desire to act who did not also possess the talent to act. That does not mean that every talented student will end up on a Disney channel show, but through classes – and auditions and roles – these students are able to express their talent and explore their passion.
And how fortunate to have a passion when many children feel lost because they haven’t found their “special something”. Most young actors do not continue acting into adulthood, but there are so ways in which acting is beneficial in a child’s development – and continues to benefit them throughout their life – in building self esteem and confidence, public speaking, social interaction, risk-taking, listening, learning to take responsibility, enhanced reading and comprehension skills, and thinking on your feet, working collaboratively, learning how to take rejection, and building empathy.
So, if your child approaches you with a desire to act, encourage that desire – in small steps. Have them take an acting class and explore their creativity – to see if it is really something they want to pursue. Let the child guide the course of action to decide if this is something to pursue further – in getting an agent, going on auditions, perhaps even driving to LA.
Before you and your child embark on this exciting journey, I encourage you to do some research – this is an excellent website for parents with children in the business or looking to get into the business: http://bizparentz.org or please feel free to post any questions you have!