“There's a gold rush going on right now. Man is breaking the earth, looking for natural gas — just as we always have. It's a mad scene, with hucksters on every side of the issue. And that's just on the surface. You won't believe what's happening underground.” Tom Chiarella, Esquire Magazine January 2013
"A Crack in Everything” is an eco-thriller in the style of "The Year of Living Dangerously". So far we have assembled a wonderful cast and crew who are all excited and anxious to get to work on this film. We've scouted and locked in most of our shooting locations in New York and Pennsylvania and have also shot some test scenes. We are still casting for some key roles and are excited to expand that search online.
We are asking everyone for your help to make this film and bring it to a wider audience. By pledging you will enable that to happen. No donation is too small. Please pledge whatever you can then pass this link along to YOUR family, friends and everyone you know. Ask them to pass it along to THEIR families and friends...and so on and so on... The more people who participate, the greater our chances of reaching our goal.
SYNOPSIS: Two journalists, Natalie and Marc, who work for a French publication, are sent on location in Pennsylvania to cover the hot topic of hydro-fracking. They are told to investigate several suspicious deaths that are reportedly being covered up. They are also told to explore the possible collusion of the gas industry with local politicians and government agencies allegedly being paid off to stay silent about contamination of drinking water supplies and other hazards. The two “outsider” journalists are treated with mixed feelings and suspicion by the small community they have entered. On a committed mission to discover the truth in whatever way they can, they become involved in a tangled web of greed and corruption. Not only do they discover a severely fractured community, but also in the process they uncover the degree to which they themselves and the people around them are internally fractured .
WHY INDIEGOGO?: Our goal is to produce this unique and socially relevant film outside of the typical Hollywood studio system. We believe our audience needs to see this film, and if we can reach enough people it will make a positive impact. By donating to this film you are taking a stance. Narrative films have the ability to reach a wide audience.. Please pledge as much as you can spare!
DIRECTOR'S STATEMENT: “A Crack In Everything” is my contribution to the campaign against what is popularly known as “hydro-fracking” or just “fracking,” the extraction process of hydraulic fracturing, drilling deep into the shale rock of the earth and pumping in immense amounts of water mixed with a toxic cocktail of unregulated chemicals in order to make it easier to get to the natural gas within. This film project is a year and a half-long endeavor that began when I was asked for my participation on an anti-fracking ad campaign. My research brought me into the extraordinarily beautiful (though increasingly damaged) state of Pennsylvania. I was shocked and intensely moved by seeing firsthand how communities have been so severely affected by the ubiquitous drilling. I was inspired to write a story that reflects the deep fractures that have occurred not just in the geography of the land, but also in the human spirit. This is not only a very personal project for me but also about a topic that has struck a strong chord with millions of thoughtful people across the nation and the globe. It is more important than ever for each of us to be a part of an ongoing conversation about the severity of the environmental crisis we face and man's contribution to climate change.
WHAT IS FRACKING?
Fracking (short for hydraulic fracturing) is a drilling technique which involves injecting toxic chemicals, sand, and millions of gallons of water under high pressure directly into the ground to release natural gas in shale deposits. This mixture of toxins and sediment, along with any natural gas released, can leak to the surface and enter rivers and groundwater in the process.
Some of the largest shale deposits of this kind are found in the Marcellus Shale, a huge geological formation underneath Ohio, West Virginia, Virginia, and Pennsylvania as well as New York – oil & gas companies are eager to exploit it.
There have been tragedies due to unregulated fracking – including flammable tap water in Colorado, methane explosions in West Virginia, and poisoned water in Pennsylvania
LOCATIONS AND CASTING
We will be filming mainly in beautiful upstate New York, (Sullivan and Ulster counties) but we will also be shooting in parts of Pennsylvania. We are committed to helping support local businesses that have been hit hard by the economy in these areas. We also have cast many of our actors from these areas as we believe that there is an incredible pool of talent in upstate New York.
FUNDS RAISED WILL BE USED FOR:
This is PHASE 2 of our crowdfunding efforts and these funds that we are seeking will be used for the following: Rental of the RED EPIC camera with a second camera rental. We are also looking for extra funds to use a helicopter for some important arial shots. We will also need extra rental vehicles to transport the cast and crew on location and there will be expenses for the production due to the cast having to travel on location. This phase of fundraising also includes the post-production stage of the project where we will need to add special effects.
CAN WE EXCEED OUR GOAL?
YES!! YES!! YES!!! The more funds we raise the better our production values and also the more chances we have to reach a wider audience with a "A Crack in Everything".
WHY SHOULD YOU BELIEVE IN OUR MOVIE?
The hope is always that a movie will find its audience when it hits the theaters, but there's no sure way to tell how that will happen. Instead of leaving that to chance, we're finding our audience before we even complete the film and we are also involving our audience in the creation of the film through grassroots social media thereby making it more of a collaborative process. It is truly OUR movie that we have made together. We will do everything we can to make you proud to be a part of this project.
We are not only making a movie but we are also creating a photography book project and an album. We believe creative art can make a huge impact on the way people interact with one another and we hope to inspire action, so we have created a social action campaign called “Light Shine". This campaign will help reveal how the cracks in the very structure of our society can be opportunities to explore other avenues available other than the exploitation of fossil fuels. Included in this social action campaign is a way for those who have been affected by fracking, tar sands and climate change to tell their stories and how their lives have been affected in multiple ways including physically, emotionally and socially by being in the designated "sacrifice zones".
Check out our Facebook page too for other updates:
and our website: www.crackineverything.com
ABOUT THE CAST:
Varushka grew up all over the world the daughter of a foreign service officer. As a child Varushka was fascinated by the arts and her artistic temperament was nurtured by her Italian painter mother who was a direct descendant of the Renaissance painter Piero Della Francesca.
After studying in Paris at L’Ecole Jacques Lecoq, and completing a degree in Comparative Literature at the American University in Paris, Varushka went on to study and work in London as an actress. She worked extensively in theatre in London and on British TV, including an Agatha Christie series produced by the BBC. As a young creative artist Varushka became captivated by the work of producers, and began her career in production, working as an assistant to Enzo Peri, who specialized in European co-productions. She worked with him on several productions which featured such artists as Krzysztof Zanussi, Julian Sands and Ben Gazzara.
After moving to New York, she continued her studies with Alan Langdon, the late Bobby Lewis(a mentor to Marlon Brando and Meryl Streep) and Elizabeth Kemp of the Actors’ Studio.
Aside from being heavily influenced and schooled in traditional arts, Varushka also has a background in digital media having worked as a creative marketing director for various internet development companies including Luminant Worldwide.
Varushka founded the company Shapeshift Dream Productions (SDP) which is a film and media communications company that creates artistic and persuasive issue campaigns across diverse platforms.
SDP’s mission is to change the vision of what is possible using film arts, digital and traditional media that will also enable a profound shift in perception as we grapple with many serious topics including the modern state of journalism, women’s issues, climate change, ethics and the rapidly changing state of the world. Varushka has the prestigious honor to recently be named to the Advisory Board of the Lifeboat Foundation and is now on both the Media and Arts Board as well as the Sustainability Board. The Lifeboat Foundation is a non profit nongovernmental organization dedicated to encouraging scientific advancements while helping humanity survive existential risks and possible misuse of increasingly powerful technologies including genetic engineering, nanotechnology and robotics, as we move towards the Singularity.
Alessandro Di Martini:
Alessandro di Martini is an actor, director and music composer who was born in Casablanca of Italian origin. He trained in Paris, Rome and Morocco and began working in international films as an actor and stuntman. He has acted in many languages including English, French, Italian and Arabic. Some of the short films he directed were shot on location in Sweden and USA. He began martial arts training at the age of 7 in both Aikido and Kendo.
Alessandro di Martini starred in the film “Larbi, or the Fate of the Great Football Player” in the role of the famous French boxer Marcel Cerdan. Some other notable films and TV shows include “Inception”, “A View of Love”, “Ben Hur”, “Contagion”, “Salmon Fishing in the Yemen” and “Road to Kabul”.
Elizabeth Kemp has worked extensively in theatre, film and television. She has worked on and off Broadway, including “Once in a Lifetime” at Circle in the Square, “North Shore Fish” at WPA and “Heat” at the Public Theatre. She was in the original cast of “The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas” which first opened at the Actors Studio. Other highlights include playing opposite Christopher Reeve, Tom Hanks, and Kevin Kline as well as working with Tennessee Williams. At the recommendation of Eliz Kazan, she was chosen to play the final incarnation of Baby Doll in the world premiere of “Tiger Tail”.
Film credits include Sisters (2007), Eating (1990), the Clairvoyant (1982), Murderous Vision(1991), Animal Rom (1995) and Challenger (1990). On TV in addition to numerous long-running and guest starring roles, she received the GLAAD award for her work on “L.A. Law”.
Directing and set design credits include productions in Paris, Stockholm and Rome. A longtime member of the Actors Studio, she recently starred in and designed the set of its productions of “The Wound in Love” and “Electra”. She has been a member of the Acting Faculty of the Actors Studio MFA program sinces it inaugural year and serves on the Board of Directors of the Actors Studio.
Nicole Ansari has worked extensively in theatre, film and television throughout Europe and the US.
TV and Film credits include Stephen Soderbergh's Side Effects, A Woman in Winter, As Good as Dead alongside Andie McDowell, TV you Control/Bar Karma, Blumenthal, Hard Four among many others.
She currently can be seen in "Shakespeare's Sister" directed by Irina Brook currently at La Mama in New York City.
Directors find Reagan Leonard when they want an actress who is luminescent yet harrowed. Maverick award winning director Tony Kaye (American History X) chose her to play the troubled specter of Henry Barthes (Adrien Brody) mother in DETACHMENT. Academy award winning director James Marsh cast her as the baby chimpanzees foster mother in PROJECT NIM. Academy award nominated Vera Farmiga selected Reagan to play Hope, a true Christian who harshly judges Farmiga’s free spirited character Corrine in her directorial debut HIGHER GROUND. “Reagan embodied Valerie Martin”, an aspiring model turned murderous meth-head, said director Randy Martin of Deadly sins. “Reagan is beautiful but an actress who is not afraid to go there…” Reagan is a confessed cinephile who comes to a role completely immersed in a director’s style, and once there she finds herself.
Sam Douglas was a member of the Actors Space in New York City under Alan Langdon (Circle in the Square). He has a BFA in Acting/Directing from Simpson College, Iowa and the University of Oklahoma Drama School. His Theatre credits in the USA include The Rimers of Eldritch, Lion in Winter, A Doll’s House, Journey of the Fifth Horse and the world premier of Lorca’s Blood Wedding. Theatre in United Kingdom includes: Desire Under the Elms at Greenwich, David Mamet’s Edmund at the Royal Court Theatre and Trevor Nunn’s production of A Streetcar Named Desire. His extensive TV credits in the UK and US includes The Painted Lady, Goodnight Sweetheart, Wolverine, The Dirty Dozen, Highlander and The Equalizer. Over 30 films including Snatch, Fifth Element, Batman, Eyes Wide Shut, Mission Impossible, Derailed and Perfume. 2 Academy award nominations for best short film: The Snatching of Bookie Bob and Tonto Woman.
Harry Seddon likes to tell the story of his very first report card in Kindergarten. It read, “Harry is a bright child, but is quickly becoming known as the class clown”. At that early age, he loved the reactions he got while performing. From singing and harmonizing with his sister, Mary Lynn at home, to impersonating his teachers in school, he escaped into his “other world”, and has been a big kid ever since.
In the late 80’s, while doing odd jobs, including driving a yellow taxi at night in N.Y.C., he studied acting with William Esper, who gave him advice that he carries with him till today. “ Don’t take it so seriously”, Esper told him. “You would think he would have told me to take acting SERIOUSLY, BUT what he meant was, RELAX, and don’t take YOURSELF so seriously.” Coming from a legend like William Esper, Seddon constantly reminds himself of that statement whenever working on a character.
He got his first principal role on T.V., on the show, ‘Kate And Allie’, being the only actor to ever have lines in their prologue. After, befriending actor, Norman Barbera(Goodfellas), Seddon was introduced to Joe Cirillo( ‘Eischied’…(tv), ‘Ghostbusters’), who owned an Entertainment Security Company. Cirillo hired him and Seddon began working personal security for Frank Sinatra for several years.
After becoming a single dad in the 90’s, Seddon put acting on hold until his son was older, and since 2007 has been working steadily on tv, short films, and independent features. His most recent,’Nasophilia’(short film), was selected to be screened at the Williamsburg Independent Film Festival 2013, and is in discussion to become a feature film.
Bettina Skye began acting when she was a small child! In 1978 she became a young member of the prestigious Actors Studio where she studied with Lee Strasberg. and the last 10 years has been studying transformational acting with Sande Shurin.
Recently Bettina won best actress in the hudson valley 2012. (best actor:Steve Buscemi and last 2 years: Melissa Leo and Vera Farmiga)
Some recent projects: Bettina is just about wrapped "Escape from Kings Park" when she played the starring role of serial killer Sasha Greenway. "The Bridge" -a short where she plays the homeless woman lead role with Marsha Bennett will be shown at the Williamsburg Film Fesival and The Big Apple film fest, in November and Dallas in March.
Currenlty Bettina is in rehearsal for the world premier of "Sisters Under the Skin" where she plays the civil war hero Elizabeth Lew. You can also see her play this same character on an episode of "Mysteries at the Museum" on the travel channel.
Risks and challenges
With every low-budget, independent film (or any film for that matter) there are risks. One of the biggest risks and challenges of any film is making sure it has an audience and with this project there is already a built in audience because of the subject matter. More and more people are beginning to become aware of the environmental and human toll the fracturing or "cracking" of the earth.
In writing this film I tried to imagine a piece that was conducive to a micro-budget filmmaking and so this film though ideally could be shot with a large budget, can still be shot on a smaller budget. I have carefully chosen the locations that can fit in with a smaller budget, but am ready to shift to other locations should we have the fortune to raise more funds.
The biggest challenge of any film is distribution – "A Crack in Everything" does not currently have a distributor attached yet. However lack of distribution can also be a blessing because we have more freedom to make the film we want to make. We may also find distribution in the pursuit of raising funds during this indiegogo campaign.