This movie started with a cabin and $15,000. I knew that we could find a cabin to shoot in, and scrape/beg/borrow/steal $15K to shoot with. So I set the stage - a New Year's Eve party - and waited to see who would show up in my head. What came out ended up being far more personal, heartbroken, and silly than I think I expected...
Artists like to believe that all of this work—all of our striving and sacrificing on behalf of a dream--will finally add up to something. But for every artist who gets a big break, there are 10 brilliant souls still slogging it out, still delaying adult milestones—marriage, home ownership, children, retirement funds—adulthood really, in service of the pursuit of their dream. The constant negotiation of “how long can I keep doing this?” — of society all but saying “when are you going to get a REAL job?” is fascinating and very personal to me. Because for many of us, we consider filmmaking (or play making, or visual art, or dance, or music) not only our REAL work, but our calling. And yet we also torture ourselves because by every other American metric, many of us are total failures.
I've seen some of the most jaw-dropping theatre in small venues--barns, cars, living rooms--and heard and seen some of the most mind-numbing, culturally murderous work broadcast--to very lucrative results--over the airwaves. And so it is.
The other theme that worked its way into the script, a sort of "happiness in the face of decline," was inspired by our current cultural climate… Our species is living in a moment of dire ecological decline, with leadership that seems determined to not only let it happen, but to expedite the process. As an artist and as a human being, I grapple daily to define the responsible action… Some days it feels like I should be shouting to the rafters, “wake up! Wake up, everyone!” On other days—the ones when I hear that another species has perished, or that the reefs are doomed, or that it’s actually too late to stop global warming from becoming catastrophic—I’m overwhelmed with feelings of helplessness. And then I just laugh the best gallows laugh I can muster.
So, this film is silly. It’s a silly tale about the silly creatures who attempt to make art for a living. It’s about the struggle to make that living, and about our response to crisis, and about pie. Because when words fail us, and there’s naught but despair, there’s always pie.
…At least, there is for now.
PS: This film was made by a lot of ladies. That was on purpose. Hollywood is 1950's backward on gender, and it is embarrassing, shameful, and very easy to address. You can read more about the issue and how to be an ally here.