Lucy in the Sky
LUCY IN THE SKY is a short film based on Jen Rudin's full TV pilot script, winner of the 2016 Sloan Foundation Writing award and a 2017 Will and Jada Smith Family Foundation Award. Lucy is a fourteen-year-old girl with autism using technology to navigate her complex social world.
Inclusion StatementLUCY IN THE SKY features an almost entirely female key creative team: our writer, director, Executive Producers and our science advisor. There are twice as many speaking female characters as male characters in the film. And the star of the story is a teen girl with autism.
About The Project
LUCY IN THE SKY is a short film based on the TV pilot script. The pilot script won the 2016 Sloan Foundation Writing Award and a 2017 Will and Jada Smith Family Foundation award. We are excited to make this short film to advance the project.
In Lucy, we see an authentic portrayal of a teenager with autism who struggles to find her path through a complex social world. This is the first time we will see a teen girl with autism as the star of the story. Through Lucy, we also meet her identical twin sister Rachel, their parents and her younger brother and we see the whole family affected by Lucy's autism.
Lucy Katz, a fourteen-year-old girl with autism, is on her way to her first day at mainstream high-school. Her family is concerned about her adjustment but hopeful that her twin sister Rachel will look out for Lucy and help her adjust to her new complex social world.
Lucy’s psychiatrist, Dr. Susan, mentions a potential research study looking for twins for a genetic research study, Lucy’s sure Rachel won’t want to participate, especially after Lucy videotapes Rachel’s friends shoplifting M&Ms and posts the video which goes viral. Back at Dr. Susan’s office, Dr. Susan convinces Lucy to take down the video she posted and the Katz family disagree about Lucy and Rachel participating in the study.
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About This Team
JENNIFER RUDIN - Writer
Jennifer Rudin is an award-winning writer and casting director who began her thirty-year career in show business as a child actor at age eight.Rudin’s current writing projects include the original pilot Starring Chloe Fisher, a recipient of a 2016 Will and Jada Smith Family Foundation award. Her pilot Lucy in the Sky is a recipient of the 2016 Sloan Foundation Writing Award and the 2017 Fusion Film Festival award. Full-length plays include My Goddamn Bat Mitzvah and Beautiful Pasadena. She received her MFA in Dramatic Writing from NYU in May 2017. She is the author of Confessions of a Casting Director: Help Actors Land Any Role with Secrets from Inside the Audition Room (HarperCollins) and a proud member of New York Women in Film and Television, Women in Film and Film Independent. For more info, visit www.purpleglassesproductions.com and @RudinJen.
BERTHA BAY-SA PAN - Director
Bertha Bay-Sa Pan’s feature film debut “Face,” co-written by Oscar Award nominee Oren Moverman, starring Bai Ling, Kristy Wu, Kieu Chinh, Ken Leung, Will Yun Lee, and hip-hop superstar Treach of Naughty by Nature, featuring a score composed by Leonard Nelson Hubbard of the Grammy Award-winning hip-hop band The Roots, premiered at Sundance Film Festival in the Dramatic Competition. During its successful festival run, “Face” received the AUDIENCE AWARD at GenArt Film Festival, the CRITICS AWARD for Best Director at CineVegas Film Festival, and the GRAND JURY AWARD for Best Director at Urbanworld Film Festival. Nominated for a GOTHAM AWARD and winner of the PREMIO SPECIALE PRIZE at the International Women’s Film Festival in Italy, “Face” was released theatrically in 2005 to positive reviews from major publications including The New York Times (a NY TIMES CRITICS PICK), Entertainment Weekly, The Hollywood Reporter, The Chicago Tribune, and the BBC.
“Almost Perfect,” a romantic comedy Pan wrote and directed, starring Kelly Hu, Edison Chen, Ivan Shaw, Christina Chang, Golden Globe and Emmy Award nominee Tina Chen, Olivier and Tony Award winner Roger Rees, premiered at the San Francisco Asian American Film Festival, and continued as an audience favorite at the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival (Centerpiece Film), the legendary Friars Club Comedy Film Festival in New York (Grand Jury Award nominee), Hawaii International Film Festival (American Immigrant Filmmaker in Profile), Opening Night Film at San Diego Asian Film Festival, Closing Night Film at Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival (winner of HBO EMERGING FILMMAKER AWARD), Opening Night Film at Vancouver Asian Film Festival, Opening Night Film at Boston Asian American Film Festival, Pune International Film Festival in India, and was selected as a 2013 "Must-See Film" at Gwangju International Film Festival in Korea. Chosen by Asia Pacific Arts as a Top Ten Film of 2011, “Almost Perfect” had its theatrical release in 2012, garnering positive reviews from Variety, San Francisco Chronicle, Honolulu Pulse, etc. Director of Mando-pop superstar Leehom Wang’s 3D Chinese concert film “Open Fire,” which premiered at 2016 Toronto Film Festival, Pan also directed music videos for artists such as Slimkid3 of Pharcyde, Chris Trapper of the Push Stars, and the popular children's band Princess Katie and Racer Steve. For more info, visit www.slewpictures.com.
LYMAN CREASON - Producer
Lyman Creason has been a producer of independent film for the past five years. After graduating from Connecticut College, he worked production in New York on the series The Night Of and The OA, and the films Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps, It's Complicated, and Disconnect. He has worked as an assistant to Steve Zaillian, Gale Anne Hurd, Dan Futterman, James Marsh and Zach Braff before producing his first feature film, Split, at the age of 26 in his hometown of Louisville, Kentucky. Other producing credits include the award-winning film Becks, At the Maple Grove and the series Thanksgiving and the short historical drama, Alice and Lewis.
SARAH HURWITZ, Ph.D. - Science Adviser
Dr. Hurwitz is an assistant professor of special education at Indiana University. Her research focuses on the effectiveness of interventions and educational programs for students with disabilities. She spent many years in the field working with students with autism, helping them to communicate, manage their interfering behaviors, and to develop social skills.
JEN RUDIN - Casting Director
Jen Rudin, CSA, is an award-winning casting director and author of Confessions of a Casting Director: Help Actors Land Any Role with Secrets from Inside the Audition Room (HarperCollins) who began her thirty-year career in show business as a child actor at age eight. As a casting executive at the Walt Disney Company, Jen conducted extensive talent searches all over the United States, identifying and hiring actors who went on to star on Broadway in The Lion King, Mary Poppins and The Little Mermaid and in beloved Disney movies like The Incredibles, The Princess and the Frog, Chicken Little and Brother Bear. Recent projects include Peter Bogdanovich’s movie She’s Funny That Way starring Owen Wilson and Jennifer Aniston, Rock Dog starring Luke Wilson, Eddie Izzard, Kenan Thompson and Matt Dillon, and animated pilots for Amazon, Disney Jr. and Riot Games. Her company, Jen Rudin Casting, casts projects in New York and Los Angeles. For more info, visit www.jenrudin.com.