The first is that per a recent article in the South Florida Times, 26-year-old writer-director-actor Frantzy Moreau figured out other ways to go to film school when tuition at Florida State University proved to be too expensive. Instead, he taught himself using books and online tutorials.
Another inspiring tidbit is how Moreau managed to get JoMarie Payton, who played mom Harriet Winslow on ABC-TV sitcom Family Matters, to agree to participate in his project. From the SFT piece:
After Payton gave him her card at an event, he called her repeatedly, leaving message after message until she called him back. "You have two minutes. I’m a very busy lady," Moreau said Payton told him.
Seizing the moment, he said he talked non-stop for the two minutes, pausing to catch his breath and waiting for what seemed like forever to hear her say, "I think this was destined," Moreau shared.
Moreau told writer Michelle Hollinger that he was inspired to start writing his 54:17 script after the murder of Trayvon Martin in 2012. The process of filming took nearly three years, and was micro-financed to the tune of $5,000 by the filmmaker and his sister.
The titular verse from the Book of Isaiah reads: 'No weapon formed against me shall prosper. No tongue shall rise against the kingdom of heaven. This is the heritage of the people of the Lord.'
[54:17 Facebook page]