As the days count down to some big film festival deadlines, I am editing, editing, editing away at the longer version of Surviving In The Cracks. While I have not landed any structured financial support to complete this project I have received encouraging words from the likes of the National Film Board, Paperny FIlms and Knowledge Network. So onwards I go.
To enhance the depths of this version of the film I am looking for animators, graphic artists, music composers, and I am again in touch with Tegan and Sara, who generously allowed me to use their song “Divided” in my trailer this summer. I will need a publicist and a distributor as well, if you know of any good ones. Lastly, I am looking for screeners to view rough cuts and provide feedback. If you feel you have anything to contribute in any of the roles mentioned, please get in touch with me soon.
I intend to submit this version of the film to DOXA in Vancouver, Western Canada’s largest documentary film festival, Hot Docs in Toronto, Canada’s largest doc film fest, and Yorkton, in Yorkton, SK – the longest running film festival of its kind in North America. In the new year, I will continue to search for and submit to other appropriate festivals.
I also have some updates on a few of the actors, for those of you who have seen the play or caught the 15 minute film at VSFF. I took Cody out for lunch on Sunday and bought him his first G-Money burger from Vera’s – a sure bet to satisfy even the hungriest person. Cody is doing well, playing hockey, staying out of trouble, and he even gets to see his little sister from time to time. I showed him the film (he hadn’t seen it yet) and he laughed his head off. I went with Davina to see Fraggle perform in David Diamond’s “After Homelessness” Forum Theatre Production – wow, Fraggle is an amazing actor – go Fraggle! Here is a link to an article about that play. I also spoke with Amethyst a week ago and she seems to be doing well too.
Surviving In The Cracks is an auteur creative documentary about a group of unlikely subjects who, from abusive backgrounds, homelessness, addiction, prostitution and poverty, struggle and succeed along with a youth support group and some university researchers to complete a remarkable theatre production based on their lives.
Creating this film has been a remarkable experience. It carries significant weight in my decision to depart the corporate world to pursue film, although when I made that decision I had no idea that the project even existed let alone was just itching to be filmed.
That realization came quickly though – not fully one week into the summer semester of the Digital Film Program at Langara College, I attended a rehearsal for the “Surviving In The Cracks” theatre project to investigate whether it was a viable focus for my grad project. After that first rehearsal, and for the many rehearsals and events that followed, I couldn’t tell whether it would be viable. But I kept on shooting.
What resulted has turned out to be far far more than I could have ever expected. Sure, it met the requirements for my grad film – but it CONSUMED me for the entire four months of the summer. Today, the pursuit of getting funding to complete a long version of the film continues to be a major motivation, and a little frustration, in my life. I strongly believe that this is an important film to complete, for its social and educational value, for academics and participatory researchers, aboriginal advocates, street-involved youth, and parents – and it is in this spirit that I am trying to complete it.
Today it exists in a 2.5 minute trailer (above), a 10 minute short and a 15 minute short. Within the 20 hours of footage, there is a strong broadcast hour length version just waiting to be cut.
Thanks to the kind support from the Vancouver Youth Visions Coalition, the UBC Center for Health Promotion Research, CBC Archives, Tegan & Sara, Tobacco Brown, and Connor Robinson, not to mention the instructors and fellow students at Langara.