Feral - A post-apocalyptic feature film
Similar to the film "Boyhood," we are shooting 4 installments of a feature each year over 4 years. Our story takes place in a post-apocalyptic future. Parts one and two are complete and we're now gearing up for part three. Our lead was 11 when we started and will be 15 when we conclude the film.
Inclusion StatementOur diverse cast and crew is comprised of super talented women, men and people of color. We surround ourselves with talented artists. Gender, race, religion, sexual orientation... it matters not. All beings from our network are welcome into the fray of Feral.
About The Project
The Elevator Pitch
This is a story of a young boy (Sonny), alone in a post-apocalyptic world who has managed to survive after society has collapsed. Sonny meets a woman (Emma), who is also alone, and a bond ensues that provides hope for their survival. Feral is a story about people making do with what's left and trying to protect loved ones. When a clue surfaces that suggests Emma's daughter, Janey, may still be alive, Sonny and Emma begin a journey to find and rescue her from captivity.
A Filmmakers Journey
It's not an uncommon story to hear about a filmmaker who spent a decade to get a film made, and then the film does not earn the money back or obtain distribution. Not wanting to wait ten years, and having the talent and tools available now, we decided to just go forward and just make the film we wanted to make. If the film is good, and we believe it will be, audiences will take note.
Inspired by the film production design of Richard Linklater's Boyhood, (that is, seeing the lead child actor age over time) we decided to embark on a similar process. By shooting the film over four years, this process makes the goal of producing a feature-length film be both attainable and unique. Not only will we have the niche´ of the Boyhood factor, but by doing it in four installments, our cast and crew can work on the film and still keep their day jobs. Ideally, Feral will be a success, and will one day allow us to make other films as our day jobs.
I made the first film, Feral in 2016, and at the time it was going to be a one-off short film. However, I had more story to tell and a cast and crew who wanted to continue this collaboration. Feral 1 was selected to screen in several film festivals, but short films being what they are, can often times disappear into obscurity. Hence, the decision was made to produce Feral as a feature-length film. As of December 2017, I've completed the second installment, and plan on shooting the 3rd in June of 2018. This campaign is in support of this endeavor.
Who is making this film anyway?
My name is David Liban, and I am the writer, producer and director of this film. I make film as a passion, but I am also a Professor and Chairperson at CU Denver's Department of Film and Television. I've been making films since the 1990's that vary in genre from documentary to narrative shorts. My documentary, Mortal Lessons, won a regional Emmy in 2010 and over the years, my films have screened at numerous film festivals and television outlets.
I believe that Feral is special because of its captivating story, engaging characters and its post-apocalyptic setting. In addition, audiences will enjoy seeing the actors age over the years, and living in Colorado provides all sorts of amazing locations that serve as our dystopian landscape. That, and the fact that I am surrounded by talented colleagues and students, who are all willing to collaborate, allowed this project to evolve from the first short film, to the inspired feature-length film.
As we produce this film, we are giving college film students real-life hands-on learning. The film students who are involved, bring SO much to the project. They come with many great ideas and their commitment and enthusiasm is remarkable. As they are starting their career in film, this is an opportunity for them to learn by working alongside the film faculty and local film professionals. Some have called it a transformative experience and have taken what they've been learning and applying it to their own projects.
Almost all the personnel on the project are contributing their talents because they believe in the project and trust me to complete it. They are colleagues, friends, students and graduates of the CU Denver Film and Television program.
Part of the reason I initially wrote the first Feral script was that I recognized that my son, Caleb had talent as an actor. I assume that all parents think their kids are talented, but as a director, I saw him take on roles (during play) with a degree of commitment that was notable. So, this was both an opportunity for me to make the film I wanted to make, and provide Caleb the experience of being an actor on a real film set. This in turn, has gotten him very interested in pursuing an acting career. Recently he was signed to a talent agency in Denver called Maximum Talent, which has, so far, led to some auditioning experiences.
For contributors to the campaign, I will share with you a private link to the first Feral film and you'll see its not just the proud father talking. The kid can act. On set, he's a pro. No complaining... no matter how many takes we need. He takes direction and now better understands the process of making a film. As a filmmaker and a father, this is an experience he and I will always have, and if all goes according to plan, the film will garner an audience for years to come.
We look forward to sharing this story with our backers and followers, and with some luck, the world!
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About This Team
I am floored by the talent that has committed to this project. My friend and colleague, Jessica McGaugh is the Director of Photography. She is an asset and an artist and on the second film she was way-pregnant, but barely slowed down. Her amazing talent and energy is there on screen!
Then there's Leslie Gaston-Bird. Leslie is another powerhouse. She is the supervising sound editor/audio engineer/sound designer/composer/mixer... she is amazing and her work is stunning. I am so lucky to call her my friend and collaborator.
Leslie doing a surround sound mix with our friends at Alamo Drafthouse.
Trevr Merchant is another incredible talent. He is a talented cinematographer in his own right, and on our film he was AC, DIT, and colorist. He can do it all, and he does. Check this out from Feral 2 as he rollerblades with our lead actor on a skateboard, operating the camera:
Then there's Kelly Spencer. She's a talented filmmaker unto herself, but brought her skills to the set as Production Designer/Costumes/props/make-up/hair.... Amazing!
My colleage Craig Volk has been instrumental in helping me fine tune the screenplay. His expertise and story sense has made the story that much stronger. Everyone say.... "crystalizing image!"
And this is me, David Liban on the set:
Our lead actor, Caleb Liban and Luke Sorge from the set of Feral 2.
I cannot say enough about Danielle Prall. She's an incredible actor who brings so much to the film. We couldn't do it without her.