The Extraordinary World of Cecily Blinkstop
The Extraordinary World of Cecily Blinkstop
Your support of this magical, live-action family drama that explores a grieving family’s loss of a child will resonate with audiences, bring a strong young protagonist to the screen, and open doors for local and female filmmakers.
Inclusion StatementIn addition to focusing on the portrayal of a strong female lead character, we are committed to hiring a crew that is 80% from the New England region and that is composed of at least 50% women.
About The Project
In a world with no music, no laughter, no color, no love...life emerges from imaginary spaces.
Set in 1974 rural New England, this live-action family drama is about Cecily, a 7-year old girl who, following the death of her baby sister, lives in a world with no music, no color, no laughter, no love. That is, until a magical imaginary friend shows up and joins Cecily on the quest to save her family from the grief that is destroying them.
Film Dedication: In the final film credits, we will remember the names of those angels who were taken from us too soon. Every contributor will have the opportunity to contribute a name to those remembered. Each angel's name will also be added to an origami crane featured on the set and, at the screening of the film, we will give those contributors the crane with their angel’s name.
Website: www. cecilyblinkstop.com
About the Project:
We are shooting this short film as a proof of concept for the feature film. It is the first 15 pages of the feature script and stands alone as its own story. With this proof of concept in hand, we plan to submit to Oscar-qualifying film festivals to increase visibility and use this smaller project to attract investors for the feature project.
The feature film script won the Grand Prize of the 2016 Rhode Island International Film Festival's Spotlight on New England Category. It was also a finalist in the NY Women in Film's Script to Production program.
Commitment to Women and to a New England Film Crew
We are filming entirely in New England with at least 80 percent of the crew from the New England region. We are also committed to building a crew with at least 50 percent women.
We are raising nearly $25,000 to cover production expenses. Film professionals need to pay rent and eat like the rest of the world. They have trained for their positions and, therefore, they should be paid for their work. With the exception of some family volunteers, our budget represents a paid film crew and paid talent. See our "Wishlist" page for a breakdown of our expenses.
Who is Writer/Director, Jennifer Potts?
Jennifer Potts is an independent Massachusetts-based filmmaker who proves that life does not need to slow down when you reach the middle. After receiving her BA in Theatre Arts, she spent years directing and producing theatre. At the age of 41, she returned to school to study Film and Video Production at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. In the past five years, Jennifer has written and directed three short films. Her last short film, Charlie & Poppy, screened at 17 film festivals around the world and won three best of category awards.
Jennifer Potts' Personal Story Behind the Project:
When I was first married, I suffered three miscarriages. It was a dark time in my life, because miscarriage was something that no one ever talked about. Over the years, I have discovered that many people around me have also suffered miscarriages and the death of children. The grief of losing a child is unimaginable until you experience it.
Losing a child is a tragedy that knows no economic or racial barriers. Approximately nine million children under the age of five die every year. And no one wants to talk about it. We need to change that.
When writing this story, I wanted to find the purest way to explore how the death of a child affects a family. Children have access to a resource most adults have lost; their imaginations. When I was four years old, I had an imaginary friend who helped me during a time of loneliness. I wanted to create a character who, like me, could find within herself the power to bring to life a friend to help her through difficult times. From this idea, a character named Cecily Blinkstop was born, and, within this little story is a big world full of possibilities that are only limited by the extraordinary imagination of a 7-year old girl.
Role: Cecily Blinkstop
Colbi Gannett has been acting since she was four years old. She is best known for her roles in HBO's Olive Kitteridge, alongside Academy Award-winning actress Frances McDormand, and in the award-winning short film Camping Trip by Director Audrey Larson. Colbi is represented by two top agencies in New York City and Los Angeles: Paradigm Talent Agency and Coast to Coast Talent Group.
Role: Helen Blinkstop
Ava was born and raised in Providence, R.I. and is a graduate of the prestigious Berklee College of Music in Boston. She played the role of Maureen in both the National Tour and Broadway companies of RENT. She had a memorable recurring role on the ABC series Ugly Betty as the scheming neighbor, Gina Gambarro. Other TV credits include NCIS, Private Practice, Franklin & Bash, The Exes, Mike & Molly, Love Bites, and multiple pilots.
Role: Kevin Blinkstop
Will lives in Shirley, Mass. and is a classically trained actor best known for his on camera work in Black Rock (Katie Aselton/Duplass Bros.), Home (Jennifer Potts), and Charlie & Poppy (Jennifer Potts). Will studied at The American Academy of Dramatic Arts (AADA) and has worked in countless productions off (and off-off) Broadway, in festivals, with acting troops, and with Actors Equity Association (AEA) companies such as Wellesley Summer Theatre.
Role: Amanda Jane, Cecily's Magical Friend
Molly, age 6, lives in Easton, Mass., where she is in first grade. She is ecstatic to be joining the cast of The Extraordinary World of Cecily Blinkstop as her first foray into professional acting. Molly enjoys playing the piano and singing. In her free time, she plays Pokemon and Legos; snuggles her Boston Terrier, Luna; and rides her bike.
Role: Barney Blinkstop
Emmett is an actor and model from southern Maine. Emmett made his acting debut at just age one as Baby Kevin James in Adam Sandler's Grown Ups 2. Since then, he has modeled in dozens of catalogs and was featured in a national ad campaign for MasterCard in which his face adorned billboards throughout Boston. Emmett loves playing the drums and the piano. His favorite thing is his rock collection. He plans to become an archeologist when he grows up.
Role: Kim Blinkstop
Patricia is a versatile young actress from Yarmouth, Mass. Her numerous roles in short films include Home (Jennifer Potts), Lilly (Zenn/Wahlberg), The Whistler (Peter Rosati), Nothing Deadly (Elizabeth Brodsky), and Nana’s Last Supper (Rebecca Ellis). She has also participated in a TV series, The Folklorist (Andrew Eldridge), and a web series, Boston Play Cafe (Patti Cassidy). Patricia’s theatre credits include The Bottom of the Sky (Cape Repertory Theatre) and Room of Tears (Boston Playwright’s Platform).
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About This Team
WRITER - DIRECTOR - CO-PRODUCER
Jennifer Potts of Fitchburg, MA
Erica Joseph Hunter of Fairfield, CT
DIRECTOR OF PHOTOGRAPHY
Devin Lyons, originally from Uxbridge, MA., now lives in Los Angeles, CA
Luisa Piña, originally from Venezuela, now lives in Swansea, MA
COMPOSER & MUSIC SUPERVISOR
Sergio Torres-Letelier, originally from Chile, now living in Los Angeles, CA
Alec Roy of Nahant, MA
FIRST ASSISTANT DIRECTOR
Isabella Olaguera of Jersey City, NJ
Spencer Cohen of Natick, MA
FIRST ASSISTANT CAMERA
Jacon Depp of Los Angeles, CA
Lisa Sene of Boston, MA
Victoria Hersey of Hollis, NH
Mike delGiudice of Lunenburg, MA
Linda Wolfe Keister of Worcester, MA
Nicole Dube of Princeton, MA
HAIR & MAKEUPJessa Potts of Fitchburg, MACRAFT SERVICESWarren Potts of Fitchburg, MA