Our goal in creating films is two-fold. First, to tell the under-told stories of young people in underserved communities. Often, what we see depicted in film are the loud and flashy stories. Real young people feel that if their stories don’t fit those narratives they aren’t important. We want to shine a light on the quieter stories which are just as instrumental in their development as human beings.
Second, we are creating pathways in film and technology for young people of communities that are often overlooked in film: brown, black, queer, women, refugee. We want to teach them the skills to tell the stories they want to tell and to show them what a diverse and well-run film set can look like. We will demonstrate to the students that this is a viable pathway for their work and artistry.
Our films use non-actors and a mix of professional filmmakers and high school students as crew. This collaborative and real-world learning is central to the philosophy of our sets. It’s important to us that film sets feel like creative places and spaces where people, young and old, can ask questions and be curious.
Collaborations with youth are the product of long-standing relationships and mentorships. Samantha co-founded Queer Film Club with 3 of the youth involved in the cast and crew of Rabbits (Anais Torres, Diana Salinas, and Will Moran.) All of the student cast/crew of our upcoming film are members of the Digital Media Club, Digital Media Class and/or Poetry Club, run by EPs Alistair and Samantha at Sullivan HS.