SUMMER DAZE explores how the innocence of youth can be interrupted by unfortunate circumstances. At the heart of it, however, is a universal tale of friendship, family, and second chances as told through the eyes of Mali, a teenager looking forward to a relaxing and fun summer.
Inclusion StatementSharing stories that center on relatable themes such as mother/son relationships and second chances through African-American eyes adds richness and authenticity to the genre. SUMMER DAZE will boast a small but diverse cast and crew with African-American leads.
About The Project
A MESSAGE FROM THE DIRECTOR
Dr. Craig Winstead
I grew up on a small street called Rankin Boulevard just outside of Pittsburgh, PA where most of the African-American families lacked a father who lived in the household. We depended on strong, Black mothers who nurtured us and taught us how to survive as we entered into adulthood. Some 40 years later, I am happy to report that most of us still have our mothers in our lives. However, SUMMER DAZE was born out of asking one simple question: What if we were not so fortunate back then?
SUMMER DAZE is a dramatic short film about a teenager reluctantly seeking a summer job who is thrust into adulthood following the untimely death of his mother. The script placed in the Quarter-Finals of the 2019 Page International Screenwriting Awards. This represents the top 10% of scripts from thousands of entries around the world.
Seventeen-year-old MALI is on his first summer break following high-school. Like many kids his age, he's looking forward to having one more summer to play video games, chase girls, and chill with his friends, while casually thinking about his future. However, like most mothers, GENA has a very different plan for him. She's eager for her "young adult" to get out into the workforce, start saving for college, and possibly pitch-in on some small bills around the house.
Mali, albeit halfheartedly, searches for and lands a summer job after hanging with his buddy LEVI for a few and reconnecting with his middle-school crush, DARCELL. Unfortunately, he will never get to share this good news with his mother. GENA gets into an accident that takes her life and leaves MALI, his friends, and family left to pick up the pieces.
Fortunately, SUMMER DAZE is much more than a tragedy. It's a story about love, second chances, faith, and the hope that passes on to each generation for them to do better than the last. With your generous support, we can bring this story to life while providing hope to teens or others who find themselves in a similar situation of losing a loved one unexpectedly.
Let's face it. Movies are not cheap to make. Even with huge strides in the cost of technology, a great movie is born out of the hard work of a dedicated team, the use of a proper camera, lighting, sound, and editing equipment, and resources/materials such as locations, security personnel, props, etc. All of this costs time and money. Your generous pledge will be spent 100% on the production of our film including equipment rentals, paying cast/crew, obtaining insurance/permits, feeding everyone, and keeping everyone safe. You can view the INCENTIVES tab above for a more detailed list of our requirements and how we came to this budget. Our budget was drafted by a Line Producer with experience working on both short and feature films.
Our $12,190 goal represents the bare minimum required to make this film at a production value on par with other films shown at reputable film festivals and distributed on streaming platforms.
- Raising $15,000 would provide contingency funds for when things go wrong for example if we have to do a "re-shoot" due to a change of actors midway through the production of the film.
- Raising $20,000 would provide marketing and promotion funds to get SUMMER DAZE in front of a wider audience.
After editing the film into a final cut, we will enter SUMMER DAZE into several reputable film festivals that we deem are of high-visibility, high value, and that promote the works of diverse creatives. Depending on the audience reception of the film, we may also seek distribution through various digital streaming platforms.
Make a Pledge!
The most direct way to help us bring SUMMER DAZE to life is to make a pledge today. We've created some very nice incentives as a "Thank You" for your support.
SHARE WITH YOUR FRIENDS AND FAMILY!
Please share our campaign link on social media and within your networks via email or text. You never know what kind of impact you can have on our film by spreading the word! Below is the campaign link for you to share.
We encourage you to create a Seed & Spark account and to click on the "FOLLOW" button above! It helps more people see our campaign. While you're here, check out some of the other great projects.
Thank you for your support,
Use the WishList to pledge cash and loan items - or - Make a pledge by selecting an incentive directly.
About This Team
MEET OUR TEAM
CRAIG WINSTEAD - Writer/Director
Dr. Craig Winstead is an African-American screenwriter whose stories often center on the universal themes of revenge, regret, and redemption. He is also fascinated by the lengths that people will go to achieve a sense of belonging or how they react to missed opportunities. His first feature script MORPHO, a crime thriller, placed as a semifinalist in the BlueCat, as a quarter-finalist in StoryPros and LA Screenwriting Awards, as Winner 2nd Runner Up in Cynosure International Screenwriting Awards, and was an Official Selection of the Richmond International Film Festival (RIFF). His dramatic short SUMMER DAZE was a Quarterfinalist in the 2019 Page International Screenwriting Awards. In addition to a Ph.D. and an MS in business, Craig holds a B.A. in Theater Arts from Bowdoin College and spent a year at the Eugene O'Neill Theater Center in the highly-competitive National Theater Institute (NTI) program as an advanced playwriting student. He has one major film credit as a production assistant on the feature film THE GOOD SON. Craig is also a Certified Project Management Professional (PMP) with over 4,500 hours of experience in successfully completing projects on-time, within budget, and within scope.
STEVEN CROCKER - Producer
Known for The Change (2018) Carmelita (2017), Glimpse (III) (2015), Meant to Bean (2015)
Born in Norfolk, Virginia and raised in Virginia Beach, Virginia, Steven Crocker became interested in behind-the-scenes features of movies at a very young age. Combining that fascination with his love of skateboarding, Steven began shooting skateboard montages with his friends in high school. When it was time to choose what to go to school for Steven knew he wanted to take his love for skateboard videos to the next level. Being a homebody, he did not want to go away to school which landed him at Old Dominion University in Norfolk. There he was able to become a piece in the ODU Film department puzzle. He graduated from ODU in 2016 and began working as a production operator at the number one news station in the Hampton Roads market. He also started his own production company, Lightship Productions with fellow ODU grads Victor Collins and Chris Circeo, which produces everything from web videos for small businesses to television shows.
VICTOR COLLINS - Cinematographer
Known for Hangin' with the Family (2018), Hamelin (I) (2018), Name Drop(I) (2016)
Victor was Assistant Camera (AC) on three feature films including 18 Mornings, Affairs of State, and American Dreamer. He served as a Production Assistant (PA) on the feature film Last Moment of Clarity, slated for release in 2020. He won "Best Film" at the Hampton roads 48-hour Film Festival three years in a row for films that he wrote and directed. He's been a full-time video professional for four years since earning his Bachelor's Degree at Old Dominion University.
Music Video Sample: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X71n6f4Wbtg
Documentary Sample: https://www.vcollins.co/permanency