Four Friends, Two Brothers, One Curse…
I suppose I could start this by saying this has been a dream of mine since childhood, but I am sure most people who exercise the courage to make this step all share that commonality. This is the first stop of a journey that began forty years ago.
Growing up, nothing was more exciting than the onset of summer school break. For weeks, the plan of summer took the forefront of EVERY conversation. Ours was spent exploring railroad tracks, fishing in the local creek for carp and basically being on our own. Well, independent enough to know it was a scant five-minute bike ride to lunch and instant iced tea.
This was the initial memory walk I took before crafting this story. Revisiting those sites, taking a visual snapshot, closing my eyes and letting the other senses guide me to the past. The feelings and sensations awoke the boy in me who played on these watery banks. I drifted further into one of those “what if?” scenarios. I gathered my love for film, its rich history and all those things that I would become. The genre that I feel most passionate about and my introduction to them in the early 1970’s emerged from the depths of the creek.
It was time. Time to take all the tools I had learned in the Marine Corps, sales, marketing, technology, politics, social media and bring them to bear on the only thing I’ve ever wanted to be since playing in that same stream, a filmmaker.
Harvesting all of those memories and feeling all of those sensations, I sat down and let them flow from me into keystrokes. From the Hammer Films that haunted my Saturday nights, the love of monsters was created in the mad scientist lab sitting somewhere tucked away between my temporal and frontal lobes. I decided to write a monster movie. As I went from revision to revision, the monster began retreating into his lair and the story became more about people, the passage of time and missed opportunities. I was ready to put this film into motion and the time is now. Where to shoot this movie? Where it all began, of course.
Over the past two and a half years, I successfully transitioned from working behind a desk, the furthest place from my dreams, to actually gathering the final skills that I would need to work behind a camera. Those skills ranged from producing a horror host independent film monthly show and emceeing a comedy showcase on Broadway to serving as Board President of theater restoration project and hosting an international horror film competition.
What I learned about film in the present, it can be both artistic and a business at the same time. There’s nothing wrong with that. This is how we’ve handled the pre-production of this project from day one. Now we need your help.
Film Synopsis: Croaker
Florian Sirko and his one-time love, Macy Patterson face a problem. A curse was originally cast from the attack of Haidamark Cossacks on Nemirov Poland, 1648, spawning a mythological creature, the Vodnik. This curse now plagues the Sirko family and the citizens of his town are paying with their souls. Macy is of course hesitant to believe urban legend as is local County Sherriff, Ben Cade, who suspects Florian is dealing with the grief of losing his brother in a more sinister way.
Running parallel to the story, George Bulter III and Teddy Marsh are two culinary masters of a local greasy spoon diner trying to perfect the art of buffalo frog legs. George inherited the establishment from his Uncle Corey, who was the other boy with Dimi, Florian and Macy on the fateful day of Dimi’s disappearance 20 years prior. George is convinced that his recent nightmare of a strange, larger than life creature and his frog companions are stalking him and he wants payback.
As the two storylines head for a collision, both protagonists realize the only way to break the curse and send the Vodnik back to hell is for it to collect 10 souls. The problem? The creature has his eye on one final soul, Macy.
Currently, we have 3/4 of the film shot, all of our actors have been paid and editing will begin after two more scenes shot. We will complete the shooting mid-July when the big lair set is constructed and the monster costume has been finished. We are SUPER close to having this dream completed. Just a bit more time and funding and we are home!
We have assembled a cast and crew who all share the passion for filmmaking and have a deep commitment to the vision. So much so, we have been able to gather our resource both behind and in front of the camera, making this dream a goal and enabling me to create a REAL budget with actual numbers providing a budget substantially below micro-budget films. Additionally, we have the Mayor of Canonsburg enthusiastically on board and providing some resources that are simply going to make this film look like a big Hollywood production.
Now we need to get some things created: the monster (no cgi creature in my film – throw back to the old days), legal, distribution, replication, transportation being the biggies. Speaking of distribution, Croaker has a release date of October 1, 2013 and we begin shooting May 12. Through Distribber, the film will initially be available on Amazon.com, Amazon Instant Video, iTunes and Netflix. Of course, we will be exploring wider distribution after the film is finished.
How You Can Help
Join Team Croaker by making a contribution or spreading the word. Anywhere from five dollars and our thanks all the way up to $2,500 and a percentage of the film distribution. If you can’t help financially, you have something more valuable than gold, your email networks – get the campaign out to your friends, family and associates through a personal touch. Finally, you can use the Indiegogo share tools to help circulate Croaker!
One month to go! While awaiting the final round of filming, keep circulating the link and reach out to friends and family through personal emails or even an old fashioned phone call. Nothing like a personal touch. GO TEAM CROAKER!!!