January 25th Update
January 16th Update
~ COTTONWOOD ~
”Sometimes doing the wrong thing is the right thing”County Sheriff Rube Whitlock is faced with raising his two young sons after the death of his young daughter which leaves his wife mentally incapacitated with grief and unable to care for them. Overwhelmed with the responsibility, Rube hires Esther, a local black woman whose husband, PV has just purchased his second mule in an attempt to establish himself and his farm as competitive cotton producers. Word of PV’s ambition quickly spreads through town igniting the community’s rage, creating dissonance and contempt within the usually quiet community.
Tensions rise as Orville “Guppy” Walters, a local ne’er-do-well, instigates a campaign that begins to threaten the safety of PV. These rumblings put Rube’s loyalties and the stability of his position as sheriff under scrutiny and it begins to compromise his livelihood.
As the condition of Rube’s wife deteriorates, Esther’s natural maternal presence begins to fill voids in the Whitlock house, which further fans the racial fires in the town. Rube is ultimately forced to choose between the boundaries set by the laws he has sworn to uphold and the boundaries set by the moral convictions of the human heart.
Amidst painful pasts beginning to resurface and new secrets freshly buried, it will take a “knobby-kneed buckskin” mule, a cheap pocket knife and a lifeless Cottonwood tree to form lasting friendships that will gray the lines between black and white and begin the delicate mending of family ties in the tender heart of a young boy.
Comments on the Script – “Cottonwood”
“This is an amazing story with so much potential to become a successful film with its strong subject matter and characters. This is a movie I am proud to be a part of. I look forward to working with the incredible filmmakers that are assembled. I am honored to be a member of the Cottonwood Team.”
-Anthony Michael Hall (Actor & Producer)
“What attracted me to the film Cottonwood was “its humanity.”
-Louis Gossett, Jr. (Academy Award-winning Actor)
“I found the screenplay to be very compelling and thought it was a wonderful character driven story. Although dark at times, the surprise ending made the story resonate with the reader, and I feel it will do the same for the movie going audience. I look forward to the role of Joe Walker.”
-Joe Perry (Aerosmith)
“We really enjoyed the screenplay, Cottonwood, especially the close relationship the entire town seems to share, and that the story is told from the point of view and recollections of a young boy. My client John-Paul Howard is honored to be a part of this film”
-Josh Taylor, Agent, Vamnation Entertainment
“There will always be a craving for strong, well-made dramas with dynamic and universal themes. With a strong screenplay, great cast, talented and experienced production team, the deck is stacked in Cottonwood’s favor to deliver both artistically and commercially.”
-Brandon Paine, CEO, At The Mercy of Artist
"Cottonwood" is a very special film that I am proud to be a part of. Set in 1937, during the depression and dust bowl era in West Texas, this poignant, heartfelt story is filled with mystery, intrigue, and tension, with strong characters. Based on relationships, friendships, death and healing with bonds not to be broken in a racially charged small town, with a surprise ending that leaves the audience with lingering emotions. Cottonwood ~ is a compelling film, a classic some say similar to Horton Foote's "To Kill a Mockingbird". With its strong subject matter, I feel Cottonwood will be viewed by audiences of all ages and will be seen for years to come...
- Julie Campbell, Producer
Stacy Dean Campbell
Screenwriters: Decker and Joseph Spence
Director: (To be attached)
Producers: Julie Campbell, Decker, Anthony Michael Hall
Director of Photography: Peter CB Masterson
Casting Director: Ricki Maslar (CSA)
John Eslinger, Executive Producer, Chris Combs, Production Designer, Stephen Chudej, Costume Designer.
Additional Team Members: Lawrence Ayers, Kandy Bagley, Molly Murray-Brunner, Logan Carroll, Brock Fuller, Italia Gandolfo, Michael Harrison, Seth Landau, Matthew Murray, Jonathan Ryan, Serita Stevens, David Von Roehm.
John Eslinger, Rick Gifford, John-Paul Howard, Kari Irwin, "Lazy" Lester Johnson, Codie Rimmer, Colby Sheppard, Rudy Tanzi, Buck Thornton, Jay Jay and John R Warren.
Why Crowd Funding:
The Cottonwood team believes we have a great responsibility to provide not only a fantastic movie-going experience, but to do our part to help others. We want to assist those on the front-lines in the battle against racism that is still alive today, and to help those in the ongoing battle to feed America’s children in need – who are America’s future.
We turned to Indiegogo crowd funding campaign to minimize our dependence on traditional film business operations. The more money we raise through your help, the more back end royalties we will be able to donate to boot-on-the-ground charities making a real difference, as to profiting standard business interest.
We want to create awareness through building a valuable grass-roots audience while offering you the opportunity to be involved and create this movie Cottonwood with us, protecting the integrity of the project in the process.
For more specs on the film visit our website: Cottonwoodfilm.com.
Cottonwood producers have completed the development stage of the project. After three years, we have assembled a strong production team of industry professionals and attached an amazing cast. We are now trying to raise $750,000 through Indiegogo, to give us the ability to retain a known director with a solid track record, and an A-list actor for the role of Sheriff Rube Whitlock. Both of these attachments will make our film package stronger and meet the requirements for us to secure production financing in the amount of $10 million dollars.
Known sales representatives and distributors have read the script and expressed interest in distributing Cottonwood worldwide once the film is complete.
COMMENTS FROM DISTRIBUTORS RE: COTTONWOOD
“Julie – it was a pleasure speaking with you regarding your film Cottonwood. Thank you for the opportunity of reading the script which we liked very much. Once your package is stronger, I would like to discuss distribution for the film with your further.”
- Stuart Burkin- TheWeinstein Company
“Cottonwood has a strong package, an intriguing storyline, an excellent screenplay, great cast and talented production team. With the addition of a known director at the helm and an A-list lead, the film has the potential to be successful both creatively and economically. This is the type of film I can stand behind and would be excited to present in the marketplace both domestically and internationally. I cannot wait to see the final film.”
–Morris Ruskin, CEO Shoreline Entertainment
“On behalf of the Acquisitions Department at MarVista Entertainment, as we have been tracking your film Cottonwood online, from what we have read, it sounds like “Cottonwood” would be a great fit for us and our worldwide client base. We would love to be considered as your distribution partner (domestic or internationally) on this film.”
- Stephanie Slack, SVP Acquisitions MarVista Entertainment
“I’m writing to inquire about your film “Cottonwood.” I would like the opportunity to discuss assisting as your sales agent as our company has sold features to distributors; Universal, Lionsgate, and Warner Brothers to name a few.”
- Jeffery Cooper, President & Founder of Sales Agency Cutt Entertainment (CEG)
“I am an Acquisitions Associate at VMI Worldwide, and I’m writing about your film COTTONWOOD. We are a fan of the cast you’ve assembled and would be interested in handling the international distribution rights for the film. VMI is a Los Angeles based International Sales Agent that specializes in international distribution of independent feature films. I look forward to hearing more about your project.”
- Elizabeth McCullough, VMI Worldwide
“Julie, I recently came across one of your films, Cottonwood, and wanted to see if the picture had Foreign Distribution in place and if all the territories have been sold. TriCoast Worldwide can provide international distribution for your film. I look forward to speaking with you regarding distribution.”
- Daisy Hamilton, TriCoast Worldwide
“I thought I’d touch base on COTTONWOOD. Spotlight Pictures is a premiere sales agent of independent cinema for worldwide distribution. I would love to discuss your film and how we may possibly work together.”
- Carlos Rincon, Director of Acquisitions. Spotlight Pictures
WHY IT IS IMPORTANT
Cottonwood is a film that cuts to the base of humanity. It is an opportunity to make an impact on others, as well as teach and educate about racism, which is something we are still living with in our society today. Cottonwood is proud to support and bring awareness to two very special foundations listed on the films website www.cottonwoodfilm.com.
Louis Gossett, Jr. – ERACISM FOUNDATION
Jeff Bridges, spokesperson – NO KID HUNGRY
We strongly feel the impact of Cottonwood will make a difference in helping educate and bring awareness about racism. This film will have the opportunity to be shown in schools, churches, youth groups, social meetings on hate crimes and much more.
The story Cottonwood takes place during a very difficult time in our history. People were struggling to survive the Great Depression, and our farmers were dealing with severe drought, losing their crops, livestock, and livelihood. Somehow, with their strength and faith, they overcome great odds, and continue to do so today.
With your support and donations, Cottonwood can move forward to the next step in making this movie while staying true to the spirit and creativity in independent filmmaking. Our goal – to raise $750,000 – to be used to retain the film’s director and lead actor, in order for us to make our film stronger for financing.
What if we raise more than our goal? That would be amazing! It will assist us in moving closer to the film budget in hopes of starting production early 2014.
We have some really exciting and unique perks; being in a scene in the film, meeting the cast and crew, dining with the producer and cast, attend a screening of the film, attend the film premiere, VIP after party, and more!
OTHER WAYS YOU CAN HELP
We would truly appreciate it if you could spread the word about our campaign through social media. Indiegogo makes it easy to share this campaign with your friends, family, and co-workers by clicking on the social media icons on this page. The more people who know about our campaign and fundraising needs can participate and donate to the project.
Please help show your support and make a donation. Any amount would be greatly appreciated!
If you are unable to donate at this time, there are other ways to help:
Tell your friends, family, and co-workers about the project and our campaign.
- Share the campaign on social media such as Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.
- Spread the word!
- Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.
Thank you in advance for your time, interest, and most importantly your support.
The Producers of Cottonwood
If you are interested in an opportunity to invest in the film "Cottonwood" please contact:
Mark Campbell Productions
(512) 820-5611 office