An ambitious television reporter trying to save her job learns of two high school students who are planning a school shooting. Instead of turning them in, she helps make their story better for television – and better for herself.
Key People (cast, crew, etc.):
Cast: Elaine Loh, Jono Cota, Joey Luthman, Sean Solan, and Kim Estes
Crew: Elaine Loh (Exec. Producer, Writer), Sean Solan (Exec. Producer, Director), Pamela Holt (Producer), Hisonni Johnson (Director of Photography), Rick Hromadka (Sound Design)
Why did you decide to submit to FirstGlance?
Our director, Sean Solan, saw an email from WithoutaBox that highlighted the FirstGlance festival. Upon reading the mission statement of the festival, we knew that it would be really quite an honor to be a part of it.
Will someone from your team be attending FirstGlance?
But of course! It will most likely be Sean and Elaine, but possibly some fellow castmates.
What is something you feel is important for our readers to know about your film?
Have you seen the recent headlines of shootings in Michigan? Or Kansas? Don’t remember? Do they all blur together? Our film attempts to address just one of the issues at play in the discussion of gun violence – media responsibility.
Gratuitous Violence is a narrative short film that examines the role of the media – what is the difference between reporting the news and creating the news?
We are not lobbyists, we are not activists, we are not wise. But what we do want is to stimulate conversation. We have decided to tell our story of gun violence at schools through the lens of media responsibility. How many times have we seen repetitive news on a loop? News reported before facts are verified? Fast-paced graphics and video designed to capture our attention? When does reporting the news go too far?
What should viewers expect from your film?
Most people tell me that they feel somewhat disgusted after seeing the film. I take this as a compliment!! They’ve really invested in the characters, to the point where they hate the choices that these characters make.
Do you have any production stories our readers might enjoy?
We shot the school shooting scene at a real school in Los Angeles. We had to be very careful about permitting and hiring a police officer to be on set (in order to avoid any confusion about guns and screaming children). We didn’t want the real LAPD to show up!
What are you looking forward to most at FirstGlance?
While it might sound cheesy, we truly look forward to seeing the other films. It’s really amazing what our contemporaries are putting out there. We go to be inspired by others, and hopefully to get to know some future collaborators!
Where can our readers find more information about your film?