Sunday, July 30, 2017

Still Moving Forward.

I think I have found some peace with losing Timmy D and Big John. I will always be grateful for there total belief in this film project, and  how they  were able to motivate my Husband and I to take on the challenge of making the movie ourselves. They helped us to believe in our dreams, and for that I will be forever grateful. I wish them the best of luck on their tour and hope life holds for them much success.

We have had great success obtaining actors who are interested in our open roles and all should be settled by the read-through planned for next Saturday the 5th. I still marvel at the talent we were able to assemble in-front of and behind the camera. I am truly blessed.

I am taking a much needed day to catch up on laundry and work-related writing projects. This will be my last "normal" day for the next two months! May even take a nap!!

Saturday, July 29, 2017

the Journey Continues

Staying very busy trying to finish script revisions that caused us to also say good by to two more cast members. It has been grueling to meet the producer's  requirements to cut the script down to 90 pages. I worry about losing content, but I did find areas I could consolidate. The problem is it cost the opportunity to work with two  talented actors. I never realized how assertive/aggressive film makers must be. It's tough to be in a role that can cause such emotional pain for all involved. I can understand  why people become so negative when they must do what is best for the project.

We are getting a great response for the roles of Timmy and Cooper, and have obtained the services of several more essential crew members. I am looking forward to Saturday and the run through of sets lighting, and our read through. This project is like a living thing. It is always evolving and I am learning to accept this.

On to some fun news, I wrote the lyrics to a song that a friend of ours is setting to music. Fingers crossed. If things work out we may have the base for a sound tract!  I wanted a song to express what palliative care is about. Let me know what you think.

You'll Never Be Alone

I wish I had some magic
that could take your tears away
But I have only hope
To guide you on your way

Hold my hand and know I'm here
As you begin your journey home
My wish is to spare your sorrow
you'll never be alone

It's  hard to watch your sadness
My hands can't make it right
but I can sit and listen
And support you as you fight

Hold my hand and know I'm here
As you begin your journey home
My wish is to spare your sorrow
you'll never be alone

You'll never be alone

Another, exciting development is that I made contact with an editor who has agreed to help me clean up my book Resilient Hearts. My previous publisher did a terrible job with the editing, no wonder they went out of business. I want to make the original story available to coincide with the movie release. It provides so much more background, wonderful stories, characters and the medical focus I fear health care providers may need to see the real value of the film. I now understand why books and their film counterparts, are often so different. I am emotionally preparing for the comments, but they are two totally different media projects.

I want to thank every one for their dedication and support. Your prayers are working!

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Where do I Start

Confirmed yesterday that Timmy D and Big Jon will not be able to continue in the lead roles of Michael and Cooper. You think in my job I would be accustomed to dealing with  bad news, but nothing prepared me for this. It is truly a painful loss for us, but I understand how important touring commitments are, and I wish them every success. Timmy and Jon were so supportive and so dedicated to this project, but their touring schedule just couldn't mesh with our filming time line. We are lucky enough to obtain some very experienced film makers who have amazing contacts all willing to donate their time, but they also have limited availability and I am not even touching on the commitment we have asked of the other actors. So, sadly we are going forward without them. The planned read through is postponed until next Saturday and it will be at City of Hope in Duarte, California. This will give us time to complete auditions and start with a full cast. We also wanted the crew to meet and run through technical issues. Lunch will be provided.

Thank you all for your continued dedication and support, and Best of Luck Timmy and Jon!

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Growing Pains

Seems as the time gets closer to actually filming the more issues come up. I apologize if any of the cast or crew worried about our continually evolving script. I was told once that a film script is an actual living document. It is continually evolving and re worked as needs are identified. I altered it to fit actors that were available, filming time frames, and to modify the doctor lingo I obviously took for granted. The challenge is to meet the needs of your audience. What will go over one person's head will make another shake their head and claim the writer is clueless. It is back to trying to write something I am proud of and that is doable. It's back to remembering I cannot please everyone, and it is back to staying committed to my vision and listening to my heart. This film is a labor of love. If it in anyway becomes a burden to anyone, I guess I would have to wish them well and encourage them to stay focused and pursue what is important to them. I have met many wonderful people on this journey and I am holding tightly onto the belief that what is meant to be will be.Now I chose to take a deep breath and continue to go forward, and hope cast and crew come along and continue on this crazy merry-go-round.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Major Themes of Resilient Hearts

Worked on the script all day yesterday and finally crashed about 1 am. I was able to condense the script to 113 pages and realized the set directions and background info collectively make up about 10 pages so I am thinking the actual script is really around 100 pages. If you take away what will end up being edited out, I think we will easily have our desired 90 minute film. At least that is how I am rationalizing it.

A general e-mailing went out to all the cast and we are awaiting confirmation of their attendance for the read through on Saturday. So any cast reading this, help settle my nerves by confirming. We found the perfect Louis, so it looks like all of the movie rolls are cas, now the test will be if they show up.

I want to thank my dear friend Dr. Lynda Reed for her efforts to get Azusa Pacific University School of Nursing to approve our use of their patient care training rooms for filming. I hope to get a decision from them this week. I am going to search for a back up just in case. I guess I need to guard myself from disappointment, and I just need to be sure this filming isn't delayed. As an Alumni for Azusa, I would just love to have them be part of this project.

I am now going to work on a business plan to use to obtain funding for Resilient Hearts. I wanted to start by supplying some of the major themes I feel are addressed in this film. Let me know if you have any other thoughts/suggestions for those of you who know the story-line.

  1. Death should not be viewed as a failure. Our only failure is when we miss the opportunity to celebrate an individual's life and fill their final days and hours with compassion and love.
  2. Laughter is a natural emotion and can sustain an individual through hardship and adversity. It provides moments of normalcy and escape at times when sadness and grief can overwhelm us. It is not a tool for making less of a serious situation, rather it is a method to strengthen our ability to endure, preserve our dignity in the face of adversity, and to allow our brains a moment to refocus/re-frame life's challenges.
  3. When an individual opens their heart to help another in distress their actions not only assist the intended to accept/deal with their challenge, but it can reaffirm that the individual is truly valued and cared about. There is an additional gift obtained when helping another, and that is the gift we give ourselves of knowing we made a difference and that we have a true purpose.
  4. Self care is a huge issue in the medical and nursing field as many as 40% of physicians are estimated to have committed suicide yearly because of their unrealistic expectations and sense of failure. Who knows what nursing numbers are, as nurses transfer or quit to reduce their stress at a time when nursing shortages are the greatest. Burnout is rampant in the healthcare field as we hold themselves solely accountable for issues out of our control. We need to accept what we have control over and what we do not. All we can do is our very best, and let go of the idea we have any control over how our patient's bodies will respond. We need to focus on what we do have control over, and that is our patient and their families final journey together. We need to embrace that opportunity to provide lasting positive memories for the families, and help celebrate the life of our dying patients. This is what will sustain healthcare providers. Knowing we made a difference will help us be resilient.
  5. The movie itself is intended to be a self care gift to health care providers. It supplies laughter, music, and a gorgeous leading man and cast of actors to stare at and help us escape from our problems for 90 minutes. Resilient Hearts emphasizes the importance of supporting each other as we provide a very special brand of caring.
  6. Resilient Hearts was written to get people talking and to help all of us enjoy the time we have and the individuals that make our lives special.
  7. Healthcare providers are way too serious and often unapproachable in their lab coats and professional attire. We need to be more human, more open, and more vulnerable.
  8. We need more cute guys to get into nursing!!
Woah, long blog. I got way to philosophical, but I think it will help me with fund raising. We shall see. Please keep those prayers and positive thoughts coming! Common Azusa!!

Saturday, July 22, 2017

This is a Lot of Work

Had another successful meeting with our executive producer team. They have assembled some amazing talent and support that have helped us go forward and has made filming starting on Saturday August 5th a reality. I am humbled and truly greatfull to the many experienced film crew who have agreed to help without pay, and for those who lowered their rates to keep this project doable. Over and over I am told this generosity is because of their belief in the importance of this project. I am humbled by this support and happy that individuals share our vision.

I will be meeting with security to firm up our filming locations and arrange for doors to be unlocked on Monday. I am grateful for the additional support from my Department to grant me access to conference rooms and our large media center (Biller Center) for filming. I will be working with a grant specialist to identify and apply for grant money to support our film project, and I have obtained assistance with much needed props. The team of nurses in the Out Patient clinics are organizing to be sure we have much needed extras and a nursing presence in the film. They will also take on the organization of providing the meals and snacks for the cast and crew and have agreed to make our daily catering budget work. The Nursing Department will be covering the cost of providing daily coffee for our cast and crew, and we  received our first donation from Children's Hospital in LA that will be used to help with filming expenses. So, we are definitely getting essential elements of this production in place. Now, I am hoping to obtain permission from Azusa Pacific School of Nursing to use their patient room simulation labs for filming. Keep your fingers crossed.

I am looking forward to our full cast reading next Saturday and we are in the process of confirming attendance. The gathering will take place in Anaheim. I cannot wait to hear my written words come to life. The auditions have been stellar, we have such a collection of talent!

My latest project is to get the script as close to 90 pages as possible. The script is currently at 123 pages.This will be no small task, but I think the problem is that I used too much of the dialogue directly from my book that isn't necessary. My action directions are too detailed and many of the long responses are just too wordy. So my mission for today is to edit, edit, edit, but not to lose content.

 I have gained such an appreciation for film makers and actors. This is proving to be a huge  undertaking. It is much more work than I ever imagined, but it is an honor to be part of making this crazy film project a reality.

Keep the positive energy, prayers, and good thoughts coming!

Thursday, July 20, 2017

It's All About the Journey

Lots going on. Met with our new Director of Photography Avner, and the rest of the film production team yesterday. Everyone still feels it is doable on almost no budget. Keep your fingers crossed! So many amazing people and resources are coming forward and the toughest thing now is to keep believing all of this is really happening! I was given the challenge by the team to shorten/condense dialogue where I can. A real challenge for me because I talk way too much!!

I also shared our film project on KOST radio this morning! They wanted people to call-in with stories about people who persevered when others said they couldn’t do something. What better story to share then ours! I can’t believe how many people turned down this movie idea, and how many just never responded. It’s more about just never accepting “no” for an answer when it is something you really believe in. Again, I cannot thank our cast and crew enough for their support and willingness to take this film project on.

I wanted to share a Tarot card I drew for today. I often just draw one card to help me work through issues and to meditate. It is my way of communicating with my higher power, and to help me better focus. Today I drew the Princess of Staves. This card "exemplifies the expansive quality of confidence at its best. Whenever she appears, know that any work shared with the world will be enthusiastically received – its integrity and passion will win other’s support. This card suggests new ideas that must be acted upon immediately, as well as a young woman who inspires others to do so. All self-doubts are to be banished as you move forward."

So I want to officially stop worrying and enjoy this journey! I need to accept what will be will be and I need to listen to what I preach, “IT’S ALL ABOUT THE JOURNEY!!!”

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Always Something

Just got back from lecturing at a geriatric conference in Pasadena. I talked about pain management for the elderly and only left myself 5 minutes to talk about improving the care of the dying. I really do talk too much. It was very well received and I still got to talk about the movie. All in all it was a good day. I am so pleased how interested nurses are about improving their care of the dying. This was another conference I could have shown our movie! So glad we are staying on schedule, our movie is really needed.

We have another production meeting planned for tomorrow to further finalize filming plans. I am going to finish the props list, work on a special schedule for my nursing pals who agreed to be background and extras, and try to plan out meals and costs. Oh, I need to start focusing on finishing painting my statue of Mary, always something!

Speaking of always more thing....Be sure to tell your friends and families to donate to our Kickstarter campaign! We are at $99.  If we don't hit our $30,000 target we get nothing, so spread the word!

New desert teaser is in the works, we know you'll enjoy! 

Monday, July 17, 2017

Still Going Forward

Still hard at work getting the production end of things organized. Allen is working on organizing the different camera shots and I am playing around with making lists of the props we need. I had a bit of a scare about not being able to use an emoji reference I wrote into the story, but it seems that emoji's are considered like alphabet fonts and are available for anyone to use as long as they are not selling the likeness or in anyway making money from their use. So, I think we are safe. I sent a request to Kellogg for permission to use their Rice Krispies treats in the movie. Not sure how that works given that it is free advertising for them. Worst scenario, we make up some generic packaging.

I am packing to go to Pasadena for the next two days to attend a geriatric conference and lecture about pain management and end of life care. I plan on plugging the movie project too. I need to put together a business proposal to show what learning could be shared and the audiences our film would appeal too so I can aggressively pursue grant money. I will continue to be quite busy. I am still tweaking the cast list with our production team and must now say good-bye to Esau Alas who was going to play Paul. I am trying to not let these changes bother me but, it's hard. I wish Esau all the best.

I hope the cast continues to review their lines, and keep your fingers crossed that all the production elements and concerns get resolved. We have all the elements we need to get started, we are just hoping to acquire additional support to make things a little easier. Things are definitely going in a positive direction. Keep up the good thoughts!

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Lots of Changes

Remember me saying that parts of the project are tough? Well things get tough when you have to make cast adjustments. I know our production team wants this movie to be successful and needs the very best talent to achieve this , but it still makes it rough. I guess constant change and unpredictability are the only things I can count on with this project.

Allen and I finished his application for the End Well Conference in San Francisco in December. I think Allen may have a chance to be part of the Conference and promote our film. It would be interesting if we could provide him with some comments from our cast and crew about what they have learned and how they were impacted by reading the script and playing the characters as they adjust to the thought of dying. I know none of us will go away unchanged from this experience. We need to put our thoughts into writing so Allen will be able to share them. This could be an amazing opportunity for our film.

I am also working on contacting some food distributors to see if they would donate products to feed our hungry cast and crew. I have a few other ideas, and welcome any suggestionns. Right now the schedule timing is going to depend on the availability of a Director of Photography, and  an experienced sound man. I'm sure I have the titles wrong again, but you know what I mean.

I was also told that more changes were needed in the script. I found a very innocent way of showing (spoiler alert) Michael and Anna got together as a couple. The film will still get a "G" rating, so don't get too excited. Other changes in the script include the spelling and pronunciation of Adam Styfan's last name. Michael is the only one who calls him "Stiffen" otherwise, his last name is pronounced sty-fen. Thomas Brownrigg's son Jeff was re-written as a close friend of Thomas' called Louis. Since I was having a hard time getting anyone to audition for the part. Now we have an amazing actor in this role.

Well enough chatting and on to working on the props list. I really feel like this film producing thing has no end!

More tomorrow. Thanks for checking -in

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Welcome Tamir and Jenia

Busy and frustrating past few days. It is true about productive and genuine growth being painful, but to go forward it must be an accepted part of the process. I am being way  too philosophical  at 7am on a Saturday. First, we needed to say good bye to Bob Lawrence. He was going to play Cooper's Dad, Oscar. He had to drop out for health reasons. We are thankful for the opportunity of getting to know him and for his honesty and concern. We will still be seeing Bob around because his wife Jeanne and grand son Zayden, still have roles in the film. We wish Bob all the best.

As you may have noticed, there were some changes within our production group too, and we had to say good bye to Erik Darling. We are now fortunate to add Tamir Gedalia and his business partner Jenia as executive producers. They are bringing a wealth of film experience and true compassion for our project to the table. Allen and I met with them yesterday and they are knowledgeable and experienced, and will be a huge help moving our project forward. I am sure their accents wont be lost on Timmy or Jon, and I can already imagine how this will help  increase the off camera craziness on the set. I am really going to need a squirt gun!

We are all in agreement that we want to continue with our established time frames, and the group reading planned in Anaheim on July 29th is definitely on. We have another motivation to stay on our planned schedule. We want to show the film or at least a detailed draft of the film at the End Well Symposium being held in San Francisco on December 7th. This first of its kind Symposium that is attempting to bring people from all different disciplines together to explore solutions to improve the end of life experience. I am hoping Allen will get one of the End Well ePatient Fellowships. Learn more about the Symposium at:, and I will keep everyone up to date.

Keep the prayers, positive energy, and good thoughts coming!!

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Keep Believing!!

Looking for a new Oscar, and a friend for Thomas. We have some wonderful actors that have applied.  It is amazing how no one plan is ever complete. There is always something that comes up to change things. I am learning to just roll with it. Now we have new opportunities for help with film production and possible help with getting the word out about our Kick Starter. This could add additional changes. It's all good, unless you are someone like me who wants s things organized and likes a plan to be made with no surprises. I am finding that is impossible when it comes to making a film. I am grateful for our actors that are hanging in there. We will get a schedule out as soon as we can, or share a new plan. The only thing I am certain of is that this film needs to be made, and it will be, one way or another. If we can do it with some financial backing we will try, because we would like to see our cast and crew be compensated for all of their hard work. If we can obtain extra experienced help, we will welcome it. We all need to just keep believing!!

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Regaining Perspective

Really getting things in perspective. I have been stressed out about getting things organized for this movie, and letting the smallest things bother me. Then I go to work and see such courageous people trying to deal with inoperable brain cancer, making decisions to have an entire arm removed so that they can live maybe a month longer, and families praying for miracles. It sure puts my worries into perspective. We so desperately need to improve our care for the terminally ill and dying. They have hours sometimes days when they are aware and need to feel valued and special. This movie is so important to get the stories out about how important it is to make what time we all have special, and for those providing the care, they need to know the importance of pacing themselves, and how to refocus to celebrate the small victories. I hope this film will help a lot of people on a lot of different levels.

I will be doing more lecturing on improving care of the dying and sharing a tool I developed that addresses the most common symptom management needs of the dying. Through an extensive literature review, I found they were Comfort, Airway management, Restlessness and delirium, Emotional and spiritual support, and Self-care. Take the first letter from this list and you have the acronym CARES. My tool has been well accepted and is in the process of being translated into Portuguese, Finnish, Spanish, and Chinese. It seems no matter what culture, sex, or age; our bodies shut down in a similar fashion. When you consider that 60% of the population die in a hospital setting, it doesn't make sense that we are not teaching care of the dying in our nursing and medical programs, yet alone to the community. I really think a huge barrier is our fear of death and being around the dying. Resilient Hearts was written to show that we are missing out on an amazing opportunity to make a difference for others and to grow as human beings. There is nothing high tech about caring for the dying. It is all about compassion, listening, and hopefully some playfulness. Our ability to laugh is what makes us human, it requires the ability to feel and react, So much of that is taken away as we are forced to become something less than human as we die. I want to help to change that.

Monday, July 10, 2017

Always a Challenge

Things are continuing to come together thanks to all of Allen's hard work. Thanks to the cast. Your patience is deeply appreciated as we continue to shift things around. Allen hopes to have lighting plans done by mid-week, then he will post the shooting schedule. I look forward to meeting everyone in person at the read through on the 29th. We are still finalizing the film crew and deciding what additional equipment to buy. Allen is in his glory. Film directing and production is what he was meant for. Even the most challenging issues are approached with such joy. He just bends with every challenge, and ultimately it all seems to work out.
More character backgrounds:
Thomas: Retired salesman who always wanted to join the navy. He never had a chance to enlist because his wife was too ill. He is a loving and kind man who struggles to find his way now that his wife has died. He is lonely and now he continues to deal with a bad heart that has been broken for a long time.
Tiffany: A college student and daughter of Cooper. She is having a hard time with his illness because she stopped being a part of his life a long time ago. She now blames herself for the times she has missed and wants to make up for everything yesterday.

More characters tomorrow. The train is almost at my stop. Thanks for your interest!

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Continuing Forward

Allen and I are spending all weekend working on filming details. We now have several offers from very experienced assistant producers and film photography directors. I have got to learn the fancy film talk, AP's, DP's, PA's, grips and gaffers. It's a whole new language!  Basically, there are lots of talented people out there who want more experience, and who believe in what we are doing.  I am so thrilled at their offers for help. Allen is working on organizing them and is planning another teaser for next week. We will be posting our shooting schedule (call sheets) by the end of the week so all cast and crew have a clear idea of when they will be needed. I want to thank everyone for their patience. We took into account persons who let us know what weekends in August they would not be available, so if you have any scheduling conflicts for the month of August please let us know at

Our casting is complete, and now I am working on props and costumes. I am hoping everyone can wear their own professional attire, and I can provide lab coats for those who don't own one. I am checking into costume rentals, and will be contacting actors that will be in a scene requiring they wear pajamas (the sillier the better) and ask them to bring their own. I will also use my blog to ask for help with other items, but things are really looking good. I have already obtained or made the most unusual objects. There is just so much to think about!

I want to continue with providing backgrounds on the movie's characters as I promised:
Astrid: a Psychiatrist with the Palliative Care Team. She is very structured and is not impressed by Michael's originality. She likes to be in charge and is very structured and serious.
Nicole: A Chaplin for the team. She is non-denominational, supportive, and very approachable.
Jessie: Only son of Cooper. He has a good relationship with his father, and is very close to his mother, Kelly. He continues to try to be supportive, but is deeply sad over the thought of losing his father.

Please keep checking the web site for information and schedules. I am attempting to make contact with leaders in the field of Palliative Care, and am trying to make this project known to their organizations. I find it interesting there is now a focus on the importance of telling stories to educate about the needs of the dying. Our movie fits right in. I just hope I can get the word out.

Keep the candles lit!
Take care.

Saturday, July 8, 2017

Kick Starter fund raising site is now Up !!!!

Staying very busy. Allen got the Kick Starter site up and we got our first donation! Only $29, 975 to go! How's that for being positive? We are very close to filling all of the roles and have a location for the read through in Anaheim the end of the month (see schedule link on this web site). Met with some experienced film makers as they were preparing to set up to film a documentary at City of Hope and networking with other hospital media departments. Cannot believe our luck. I want to thank everyone for the positive energy!!

Back to character summaries:
Anna: A dedicated neurologist who enjoys helping her patients and co-workers. She is kind, and has a playful sense of humor. She is attracted to Michael and they are becoming close friends. She is a good friend of Valerie's , and is a reliable and supportive person for the team.
Alex: A pharmacist for the team. He is very serious about his work and doesn't quite get Michael's sense of humor. He is kind of nerdy, but is always there for his team mates.
Valerie: A very compassionate social worker with a bit of a temper when it comes to Michael. A very take charge woman who is accustomed to being listened to by her two girls and her husband Paul, so she is challenged by Michael's fierce independence. If Michael is the soul of the Palliative Care team, then Valerie is the heart.

I again thank all of our actors and encourage you to contact me if you have any questions about your roles. And, to my fellow blog readers, please share our Kick Starter information with your friends and family.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Thanks CHLA!!

Got some wonderful news yesterday. Children's Hospital in LA would like to make a donation to help with our expenses in making Resilient Hearts. I was fortunate enough to meet the amazing people that make up their Palliative Care teams and participate in a workshop focused on helping them stay resilient. I think one of the toughest parts of my job is working with dying children. How can you not get personally involved? Children are so brave and they know what is happening, and through it all, they are most concerned about their families! There is such love and sadness, I understand how it can take its toll on the nursing and medical staff. I really feel the special things we do to make the child's final days special are as much for us as it it for them and their families. I want to help health care providers to let go let go of any sense of failure and focus on making a child's final journey as loving and special as possible! Thanks Children's Hospital of L A for believing in us!!

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Never Giving Up the Dream

I am finding the toughest obstical to completing this film project is myself. It is so easy to feel overwhelmed. Allen has a huge list of tasks for today and I need to be supportive, wish I could work on the film organization full time. I need positive people around me. I think of Timmy D. and the challenges he faces with his music, and all the energy Big Jon puts into promoting teams him set a much needed positive example for me. They never give up the dream. I can add the actors that have agreed to work for just a credit on the film and food. They are holding on to a dream too. I guess the thing to do is focus more on how important the dream is, and things become less daunting. It would be far more painful to give up on the dream. It boils down to believing in yourself and trusting that dreams do come true. I am being very philosophical for 6am in the morning! Now I need to shift gears and do more character backgrounds.

Adam: Adam is an Oncologist who has bought into the traditional way of showing he cares about his patients by coming up with one more treatment, one more study, because when you care you don't give up. He sees no need for "small talk", and doesn't care if he is liked. What is important is that he is doing his job. He is one of those intellectuals that never developed any social skills, and he has no patience with the need to be warm and fuzzy. He was sent to St.Mary's to work with Michael and the Palliative Care team and to learn better better people skills.

Steven: Steven is also an Oncologist with a desire to improve how he can better relate to his patients and staff. He is learning a lot from his experience at St. Mary's and is open and willing to share.

Well so much for today,
I promise to keep dreaming!

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Happy Fourth

So strange to be off four days in a row, but Allen and I are putting the time to good use. We hope to have a sight up on Kick-Starter by tonight. Our goal is to raise $30,000 to help finance this film. That may seem like a lot to some, but when you figure that would allow us to pay the actors and crew something and provide them with 2 meals and snacks over the estimated 12 days it will take to shoot this film. We must also cover costume rentals, props, insurance, make-up artists, studio rentals, and the cost of any other permits or fees. It is all so overwhelming but we have so many wonderful people dedicated to the success of this film, I just know it will continue to move forward. We will be posting information about the Kick Starter site when it is completed and made available.

I could not believe how old I looked on the video for the Kick Starter site. Oh well, maybe it will make me appear more trust worthy. Timmy D. has agreed to let us offer his latest CD as a fund raiser on the site. We are also going to offer a backstage photo book, signed movie scripts, signed photographs of Timmy D., and dinner out with Allen and I, and 2 available cast members. We are considering adding additional incentives like winning a hot tub bath with Cooper (Big Jon), and a chance to wear Michael's (Timmy D.) sweaty lab coat. That should bring in the donations!

Well we are going full tilt to get the filming organized. Allen will be connecting with the film crew this week and everything seems to be going forward. I want to remind any of our actors that I will remain available by phone, text, or email for any questions or concerns.

Keep lighting those candles!


Monday, July 3, 2017

Growing Pains

 I am so happy that the crew really has the project's best interest at heart. We have an important message to share and need only those who can work together and share our vision to help us go forward. I want to thank all of our supporters and our awesome cast for their dedication. There is so much to putting a movie together and I think we are all feeling some pressure to be as prepared as possible for the first day of filming planned for Saturday August 5th.

Allen is sending out an email to all the cast to help them with any questions or concerns. I want to focus on helping the cast with background and how I see their characters. So I will be addressing a few characters daily in an effort to give our actors some perspective.

Oscar: Oscar is Cooper's Dad. He has a great sense of humor and is very proud of his son. Has opted to stay very involved in Cooper's care and helps Kelly when ever he can. He is also a devoted grandfather to Tiffany and Jessie. Oscar is devastated at the thought of losing his son, but tries to stay strong and not show how heart broken he is. Being overtly affectionate is not his strong suit. He demonstrates his love for Cooper through humor and sarcasm.

Cooper: Cooper has been ill on and off for three years. He thought he had his kidney cancer under control until his wife Kelly forced him to see a doctor for his ever increasing back pain. Tests showed his cancer had spread to his spine and his back pain was due to a tumor. Cooper is having a hard time loosing his independence and is able to keep his temper under control most of the time except when he is in severe pain. Cooper is struggling to keep himself together emotionally for his family. He loves his wife Kelly deeply, and tries very hard not to have her upset.

Michael: Michael was deeply affected by the death of his 14 year old sister Emma, when he was 12 years old. She died of leukemia and Michael has always blamed himself. Michael's bone marrow was not a match, and Emma died before a match could be found. Michael saw her suffer and never wanted anyone else to experience that kind of pain. He has a natural sense of humor and an ability to be very caring and compassionate, but he hides behind a kind of tough rock star image to balance the stress of his job. He turned to music to help him deal with his sister's death, but now only occasionally plays his guitar. He is good at his job and his patient's love him.

Hope this additional information helps both the actors and those following my blog to get to know the characters of our film. Keep those candles lit and the good thoughts coming. We need all the positive energy we can get!

Sunday, July 2, 2017

Making a Difference

We are continuing to complete our casting. I believe we found our Tiffany and I will share how very special she is in later postings. Still amazed at Timmy D's talent and I really hope this movie will help people to get to know him better. Be sure to check out his band Pullman Standard.

I hope to spend this month working with the actors to help them better understand their characters and their motivations. I am hoping they can make the dialogue I wrote more of their own and have some fun with it where they can. The humor seems to balance the sadness. We  handle some tough material, but I think it is so important to get the information out and to get people talking. I deal with all of this on a daily basis. I just hope this movie will help make a difference in people's lives.

All persons deserve to be respected and treated with dignity. The dying should not be ostracized, they should be celebrated and included as any human being should. I want to show how important it is to make what time any of us have quality time, and I am thrilled my words will be given a voice by such talented actors and friends.

We are hoping to do some re-shooting this week for another trailer, and I want to put some actors together so they can run lines. Most of all we are hoping to work with Erik and get some production meetings together. Lots to do! (Aren't you impressed I am learning all of this movie lingo?)

I am going to set up the scenes and the lines for the nursing extras in the film and work with our team to set up their shooting schedules so they can plan who will be available. I will also be offering the chance to be a walk-on when I know for sure what are plan is.

Keep checking out the web site for more current information!

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Low Battery

Sitting at a bar called the Rabbit Hole near San Diego. Allen and I are here for Timmy D's New CD release party for his group Pullman Standard. I have taken on a kind of Mom role with him. He is such a great guy and so talented. I really hope audiences pick up on this.
We found a perfect Adam, Jeff, and Nicole. I just hope who ever is watching out for me doesn't mind the overtime. They are doing a great job!!
So far the only roles left to fill are Tiffany, April's mom, and Danny. Keep lighting those candles for us!!
Sorry for the short post, I only have10% battery. I will do better tomorrow!!