What do you do when you're at your lowest and don’t know if you’ll ever get up again? How do you put back the pieces of a life that's shattered beyond all repair? These are questions we’ve all asked ourselves in our adult lives. And we'll tackle them together as we make this film.
Inclusion StatementAs a black man partially raised in my grandfather's church, this story reflects my very personal feelings about love, despair, religion, and (most importantly) hope in the anxiety filled and uncertain world we live in.
About The Project
A grieving ex-pastor finds himself responsible for saving the life of the man that killed his wife.
This film is the culmination of an idea I had over fifteen years ago, however the anxiety and uncertainty of the world we live in made it more relevant today and made me feel like the time to make it was now.
You may have chosen to face the world as a person of faith, an agnostic, or an atheist, but if at some point in life you've asked yourself, 'Did I make the right choice?' then Hawks Ridge will speak to you.
Pastor Elijah Frank and his wife, Robin, were the leaders of a small inner city church. As community leaders, they fought back against the rising tide of teenage drug use and dealing all around them. Through various outreach programs, they worked tirelessly to get children in the neighborhood out from under the influence and sway of a man who went by the name of "Chill,"the area's main drug supplier.
One night, after receiving a desperate call from a boy who was being pressured into selling drugs for Chill again, Robin rushed out of the house in the rain. Her car slid off the road and she died.
Soon after, having lost all faith in a benevolent god that could take away someone like his wife, Elijah abandoned his congregation.
Having spent the past 18 months living like a recluse in the cabin hide-away that he shared with Robin on Hawks Ridge in the Blue Ridge Mountains, Elijah now spends his days living in the past and talking to his deceased wife. Whether she is a ghost or his imagination is unclear and honestly unimportant to him.
On this particular winter morning though, Elijah receives a "message" that tells him to walk the remote gravel road leading to the cabin. Trudging through the snow, he finds a car that has slid off the road and is smashed to pieces. Seeing that someone is unconscious inside, Elijah struggles to get them out and back to the cabin. Once there, he sees who he has rescued. It is Chill.
What follows is a battle of wills between two men with very different agendas. Elijah, convinced that Chill has been sent by god to give him a second chance, resolves to get Chill to repent his ways and beg forgiveness. And Chill, unclear if Elijah is crazy or not, simply wants to survive the winter.
In the end, the truth is more than either them ever imagined or bargained for.
Over eight days in December of 2018, myself, a pair of talented actors, and an amazing crew went up into the Blue Ridge Mountains and shot the bulk of the film. Then it was back to Richmond, VA to shoot dream sequences and flashbacks with more cast members and extras.
We’re now deep into editing a rough cut and original music is being created for the film. As things progress, we’re hoping for a finished version by late June!
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About This Team
As an actor/writer/director, I have done just about every job you can do both on and off stage and in front of and behind the camera. As the host of The Discovery Channel's "Travelers" series in the late 90's, I was lucky enough to travel all over the world for two years. While shooting the show, I would incessently bug the crew to teach me what they knew, and inbetween setups in Japan and Puerto Rico, I shot my first short. After that there was no stopping me!
Since then I have shot numerous more shorts, music videos, training films, and two features. I am proud of everyone of my projects but I am most excited about the themes and depth of this one especially. I hope you'll join me for the ride! IMDB
An avid Theater and VO actor, Keisha works as a touring actor with Virginia Repertory Theater (Theater IV) and recently won a Richmond Theater Critics Circle award for Best Newcomer for her role of "Bess" in Food, Clothing, and Shelter by Bo Wilson (Firehouse Theater). Keisha can be seen in season 2 of the FOX Network’s, Legends and Lies playing the role of Phyllis Wheatley, as well as, the upcoming 3rd season of Legends and Lies as Harriet Tubman. Other TV credits include: Investigative Discovery’s Ice Cold Killers and Happily Never After. She also can be heard in various national and regional radio commercials.
I've worked in the film industry for nearly 10 years. I started out in the audio department working as a recordist and boom operator on shows like "Killing Lincoln" and "TURN" before I moved into the camera world. Since then I've shot several features, a bunch of short films, and more commercials than I care to recall!
I really enjoy telling stories. Independent films allow me to help writers and directors tell their story in a way that takes advantage of all that the cinematic medium has to offer. Being a part of a creative team that brings a story to life is what it's all about.