Running a family dairy is a labor of love. 12+ hour days, 7 days a week, no vacations, & constant threat of bankruptcy. Dairy farms are going out of business at an alarming rate, but some are holding on. If your parents only knew one way to live, how far would you go to save their livelihood?
Inclusion StatementMilk Money is directed by me, Jimmy Nguyen, a Vietnamese-American. The story also includes unique voices in Gordon, a farm boy, and Lian, his adopted Chinese-American brother. The crew will have film students from Virginia Commonwealth University, including women in key positions.
About The Project
Milk Money is about two brothers, who grow up on a dairy farm and come back as adults to try to help their parents through economic and emotional distress. The older brother is the White biological son, while the younger brother was adopted from China as a baby. Their desire to save the farm is complicated by their strained relationship. Each wants to be the good son, but it eventually leads them down a dark path. If you like gritty family drama/heist movies, then Milk Money is the short movie for you.
I, Jimmy Nguyen, am the writer and director of Milk Money. I live on a 13-acre farm in Fauquier County that is less than ten minutes from the two dairy farms where most of our scenes will take place. Throughout my life I've worked on five different fruit and vegetable farms that sold through CSAs or farmers' markets. In that time, I never interacted much with dairy farms. That all changed when I moved to Fauquier County and was surrounded by them. I've gotten to know some of them as neighbors and have met some through my wife, who is the county's 4-H Extension Agent and helps manage several 4-H livestock clubs.
I want to make Milk Money to show a slice of rural America that people don't often think about or may never get to see (as small family farms continue to dwindle). It's safe to say that dairy farming and milk are contentious issues. Regardless of where someone stands on animal farming or nutrition, I want audiences to appreciate the hard work, dedication, and financial and emotional stress that comes with being a family-run dairy operation. The past few years have been difficult for dairies as prices have bottomed and costs continue to rise forcing many dairies to go out of business. It's gotten so bad that a Northeast dairy cooperative sent out notices to member farmers that lists contacts for suicide prevention hotlines. Milk Money offers a glimpse into a family that is struggling with some of these issues.
Visually and tonally, the movie will be similar to Winter's Bone and Ballast. Around the farm and inside the houses, there will be clutter and mud, but there is a functional beauty to it. The characters are hardened and hearty farm people. Exteriors will feature the grey winter skies and brown pastures of rural Virginia dotted with rusty silos, abandoned barns, and old tractors. Your ears will be treated to sounds of cows, roosters, generators, tractors, and nighttime stillness.
Come on this ride with us as we make a great movie and try to get it onto the big screen at film festivals around the country and possibly internationally. We intend to enter the finished product into local Virginia, D.C. and Maryland film festivals and some of the bigger ones like Sundance, Austin Film Festival, and Palm Springs International Shortfest.
We intend to begin shooting by late March 2019 and have a finished product by June 2019. We thank you for your donation and/or general good mojo directed towards this project. We will deliver a great product for you.
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About This Team
Jimmy Nguyen - Writer, Director, and Producer
Curtis Boggs - Director of Photography
Curtis specializes in capturing unique and stunning images of adventure travel in the Caribbean, various editorial and corporate assignments as well as feature film. His work has appeared in numerous international publications, including National Geographic, Outside Traveler, Scuba Times, Rodale’s Scuba Diving, Traveler, Caribbean Travel, and many more. Visit his website at www.cboggs.com.
Mackenzie Nolan - Assistant Director
Mackenzie is a VCUarts Cinema student who has worked on over 14 different movies in various capacities from director to assistant director to electrician.
Kimberly Skyrme - Casting Director
Kimberly is a Casting Director (CSA) - Producer - Writer - Director. Her work includes Independent and Hollywood Feature Film and Television Series. She was the Regional Casting Director for STARZ Original Series The Girlfriend Experience. Kimberly's casting collaborations include: the Emmy Award winning Netflix original series House of Cards - Seasons 1-3, Unsolved Mysteries; Deep Impact; Hearts in Atlantis; Beloved; The Pelican Brief; True Lies; numerous Independent Feature and Short Film Projects.
Olivia Dinman - Camera Assistant
Olivia is a VCUarts Cinema student who has worked on several short films and has had one of her own screenplays produced independently. She has worked a wide range of positions, but specializes in camera, production, and post production.
Ryan Henderson - Production Designer
Ryan is a VCUarts Cinema Student who has worked on several short films, music videos, and promotional advertisements specializing in Art Department and Production.
Cole Horne - Art Director/Costume
Cole is an aspiring filmmaker studying at VCUarts Cinema.