For the majority of my life I've loved films and storytelling, involving myself in nearly every aspect of production and performance. Starting in acting, I tended to be frustrated with content. Plays and films that were always well-written, but too often lacked a voice that critiqued or challenged society. A voice that utilized the platform of the arts and entertainment to promote cultural awareness and provoke change.
I turned to writing, being inspired witnessing a friend produce her own work. I spent the next few years writing scripts ranging from comedies to epics, covering topics from animal welfare and revolution to homelessness and addiction. Shotgunning the scripts out to the many writing contests and film festivals, I received positive feedback and decent placement, but it never availed to a connection, to actualize the scripts into films.
Remember 7 was born out of the f-it's. A zero budget, pitched first as a series of shorts, and later connected into a whole, cohesive story. Based in pseudo reality, hyperbolically and absurdly representing the experience of being a writer through the unfolding eight stories shared in all different styles and genres, showcasing multiple ideas and scenes.
The title came later as we were half-way through filming and developing the base story. Feeling insecure about the ideas and approach to the film, I drew from a personal experience. A concept my brother came up with after our mutual friend committed suicide: Remember 7.
Our friend, who had written the number “7” on everything, took his own life with a handgun. My brother coined the phrase as the idea of living that much harder, for those who are no longer with us. It later developed into a motivation for everything: living your dreams, facing intimidation, fighting for something greater, and continuing through rejection of your most vulnerable self. Against all odds, because why not.
The film moved through many obstacles and momentary triumphs such as being paid out of pocket by the crew; including myself, already living below the poverty line. Or utilizing local bands for the soundtrack, friends when running out of actors, and guerrilla filming for the locations. It is a project born entirely out of community and passion. Focused on absurdism and comedy, it was a lot of fun to make nonetheless. Each shoot one actor having to leave for work and another whose never done lines on camera before. The natural rhythm and brief rehearsals gave us a plethora of unique takes on and of the lines.
Post-production took much longer than expected, of-course, as winter came and everyone nestled back into their less-creative lives while the project lost steam. With some pick up shots in spring, the film was finished by mid-summer! I am truly honored to have had all the relentless volunteerism of a fantastic cast and crew. From the experienced actors and DP to the friends and thrill seekers, shooting was about as absurd as the content. Cops being called, real tomahawks being chucked at each other, and day-of location scouting. We always maintained a positive spirit, or so I put off...inside I was dying slowly from stress but who's not dying slowly inside?
An idea born out of a tragedy, becomes a hilarious adventure in storytelling and inspiration on screen. We hope to bring together multiple issues and perspectives as they collide for audiences become a non-stop, nine-storied epic with a message of overcoming.