“Justified”

So far this year has consisted of one superhero film and two sci-fi films (plus my very first commercial)! I’m loving this trend!!! It started in January/February with the superhero film, “Justified”, which ended up being about 40 minutes long. We filmed on Saturdays for 6 weeks, and let me tell you…it got cold!!! (I mean, it was the dead of winter, after all.) The morning I had to lay on the ground, it was in the 20’s. It’s hard to act unconscious when you can’t stop shivering! But other days were unusually warm, which was a blessing since a lot of it was filmed outdoors. Here are a few snapshots from production! I played Kara, and my “gauntlets of doom” gave me extra punching power (plus they’re programmed to identify an enemy and automatically attack…which doesn’t work out so well when they malfunction and start punching the wrong person).

Last weekend was the film’s premiere, and it was so fun to reunite with most of the cast and crew to watch the film for the first time! I finally got to wear my eShakti dress as well as my new lip color (“Fly Girl” by LipSense) for a classy look.

Follow me on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter for more behind-the-scenes photos and stories from this film and others I’ve done!

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“Assana” Teaser Trailer!

Assana Cover Photo

“An isolated woman is content with her lonely life in the wilderness. But when a young boy enters her world, she discovers there is more to life than herself. Exploring passed her boundaries, however, is not going to be easy. There are creatures in the woods hellbent on keeping her there. Will she be able to defeat the bloodthirsty beings that have imprisoned her? And what will she find beyond?”

Enjoy our new teaser trailer!!! (I can’t even count how many times I’ve watched it, haha!)

Assana. Probably the most challenging and rewarding role I’ve ever played. I had to portray a whole range of intense emotions: contentment, fear, curiosity, pain, terror, grief, rage, despair, hope, joy… And mostly without words. I love acting without words. This role took me to depths I hadn’t had a chance to explore before, and I loved it. I loved it so much. I miss Assana and the privilege of stepping into her world. I also miss the talented cast and crew that made this such a wonderful experience.

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Assana is a short sci-fi/fantasy film. We shot it in 5 days at the beginning of June. It was a very unique and special experience. Now it’s in the editing process, and we have a composer in Germany writing an original score! We would love your help as we seek to raise funds to cover our post-production costs: gofundme.com/assana

For more behind-the-scenes pictures and videos, follow these pages: my facebook page and instagram page, and the Staring at Fire facebook page.

2016 in Review

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!! It’s so hard to believe it’s 2017 already. This past year has flown by with so many film projects to keep me busy. I’m hugely grateful for all the opportunities I’ve had this year, and want to give a quick recap since I’ve been too busy to keep my website updated with posts about all of them!

Highlights: 10 Films and 2 Best Acting Awards

April
– Difference Maker

July
– One Day
– But Maybe This
Best Acting Award for Providence

August
– Technicolour Daydream
– Across

September
Best Acting Award for Across
– We Are The Dead

October
– They Remain

November
– Worth the Price
– American Dream

December
– Mount Hideaway

(Hover over pictures below to see film title. Click to enlarge.)

Other notable film-related activities this year were attending the opening night of Providence in the Empire AMC Theater on Times Square in NYC (Feb.), spending a week at the Christian Worldview Film Festival (March), going to the premiere of My House (July), hosting a screening of Polycarp (Aug.), and getting cast in two films coming up next year! 2016 was a wonderful year and I look forward to more adventures in 2017!

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“Across” Short Film

On August 13-14, I participated in my second 48 hour film competition of the summer! (If you haven’t seen the 48 hour musical I acted in with Mirari Pictures in July, click here.) This time I was working with team “Just Pick A Name Already”, and we made a post-apocalyptic film called “Across”.

We were outside in the sun all day, and the heat was brutal with temps reaching 103 degrees (with a heat index higher than that). I kept a water bottle in my pack and drank as much as I could, but I was still feeling dizzy at times.

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We had other challenges, some which would try the patience of a saint, but through it all the team kept a great attitude and just kept pressing forward as best they could. We were on location nearly 16 hours, and I didn’t get to bed until 3:30 the next morning. The sun woke me up three hours later. That afternoon, I went over to the apartment where they were editing the film and rerecorded some audio they couldn’t use from the day before (because there was loud music from a wedding on the property while we were filming).

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Two weeks later, all the 48 hour films were shown at a screening. Our team was ecstatic to find out that we were nominated for 7 awards, making us the second most nominated film! Two days later, we attended the “Best Of” screening where all the nominated films were shown again and the winners were announced.

Our team took home 4 awards! We received Best Editing, Best Sound Design, Best Costume Design, and BEST ACTING!!! We were so excited! Here are pictures from both screenings…

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I’m sure you’re wondering when you’ll get to see our film, and trust me, I can’t wait to share it with you! But it will be going on a short festival tour first, and we don’t want to disqualify ourselves from any festivals by posting it online. As soon as it’s available for the public to see, rest assured I will be posting it here for everyone to enjoy!

Meanwhile, stay up to date on all my busy acting adventures on Facebook and Instagram!

“Sergeant Lowman” Short Film

The first weekend in August, I went out of town to act in a short film called “Sergeant Lowman”. It is a romantic story about an American soldier wounded in France during WWII and nursed back to health by a young French woman until he must leave to rejoin his troop. It will be quite short once it’s put together, because it will actually be used as a flashback in a feature-length film as a grandfather tells a story to some young boys about his father during the war. The feature is called “Technicolour Daydream”, and you can follow their progress on their Facebook page! The film will likely be released next year.

Here are some behind-the-scenes pictures that some crew members were kind enough to snap on my cell phone.

I very much enjoyed working with Writer/Director Mitch Hudson, Producer/Set Designer Jenna Green, and Actor Caleb Towns (as well as the rest of the crew). We were delighted to join forces again the very next weekend to participate in a 48 hour film competition! But more about that in another post, coming soon…

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Watch “Wanted” For FREE!!!

Wanted FB Cover Laurels Aug. 2016

Major announcement! After a very successful run of the film festival circuit (as you can see from all the laurels), our multi-award willing short film, “Wanted“, is now free to watch online! We’re excited about all our nominations and wins, but the most important thing to us is touching people’s lives and reaching their hearts with the impactful message of the film. It’s an inspiring message of hope, love, and family. It’s 22 minutes long, and I hope you will take time to watch it and share it with your friends!

This film is very dear to my heart, not only because of the beautiful story, but also because of the 2 years I poured into it. I served as a producer, story consultant, actress, behind-the-scenes photographer, website designer, and social media marketer. Speaking of social media, you can learn more about the film on Wanted’s Facebook page or Official Website.

“But Maybe This” Short Film

On July 16th, I participated in my first 48 hour film competition! Many cities across the country sponsor this competition, and you compete with other regional filmmakers. The teams have 48 hours to write, shoot, and edit a short film. It’s pretty crazy! You have to draw a genre on Friday night, and you’re also assigned a certain prop, character name, and line of dialogue that you have to use (to make sure no one makes their film ahead of time).

For this competition, I was working with my friends at Mirari Pictures (I acted in their film My House a few years ago). We drew the genre “Musical”! These were the other assignments:

Name: Jordan Bitwinder
Prop: Bracelet
Dialogue: “Watch and learn”

Jake and Ryan stayed up all night writing the script while Kristen stayed up composing the music. The other three actors and I reported for work at 6am Saturday morning. By noon, we had mostly finalized the script, worked through the music, and recorded our singing lines at the studio.

From 1:30 to 10:30pm, we filmed all the scenes for the movie. There was a mixture of lines that were sung and spoken. For the sung lines, we had to lip sync to the tracks we had already recorded in the studio, which took some time to get the timing just right. But we got it all done! And despite the time crunch, there wasn’t a stressful atmosphere on set. In fact, I don’t remember ever laughing so much on a film set. We had a blast! The hardest part was keeping a straight face while the cameras were rolling. By the end of the day, we had all been up long enough to start getting a little slap-happy.

Ryan and Kristen stayed up all that night to the editing done, and Kristen worked through Sunday to finesse the edit and work on the final sound mix. Kristen ended up being awake for 60+ hours! She did a great job.

The next weekend, some of us traveled to the regional festival location to see our film on the big screen in a huge historic theater. It was so cool! And our film definitely got the most laughs in our screening block, which was very gratifying! The next weekend it showed again at the “Best Of” screening, and we won the “Honorable Mention for Best Musical Score” Award!

So are you ready to see our film for yourself? Here you go!