Saturday, August 10, 2013

AFI Project Set in Vegas Tunnels Gets Major Media Assist

This should definitely help the donations cause.

A pair of AFI students, Jeremy Cloe and Mike Langer, got a nice write-up this month in the Las Vegas Review-Journal about their 20-minute thesis project This Way Up. Reporter Stephanie Grimes explained how these Nevada and Utah natives came to decide on a drama set in the infamous concrete tunnels that lie beneath the Las Vegas Strip, where various displaced individuals set up ramshackle home.

For a variety of reasons, the filmmakers are shooting not on location but mostly in LA. And that's why the budget for the movie is rather prohibitive ($65,000); the shoot will include the re-creation of what is the worst scenario for any real-life denizen of the tunnels: massive rainfall and incoming flash-flood channel waters.

From Grimes' article:

“This is about trying to get people to understand that the people who live down there don’t easily fit the homeless stereotype,” Langer said. “They have personalities and stories, and if you want to explore it, they’ll tell you about it...”
Langer said earning the trust of the homeless was a challenge, but the filmmakers were ultimately able to delve into the backgrounds and daily lives of many of the people they met.

The AFI team assembled by writer-director Cloe and producer Langer for their fictional dramatic narrative will have the benefit of an experienced editor, Steve Pristin. His credits include the HBO documentaries Ted Williams and Borg/McEnroe: Fire & Ice.

[This Way Up]

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