Looking Back, Looking Forward

We hope this letter finds you in good spirits as we prepare to celebrate the New Year! As much as we look forward to a little holiday rest and relaxation we are busier than ever here at Blue Damen Pictures and as we look forward to a bright New Year we wanted to take a moment to reflect on how far we’ve come.

In the early part of 2011 we wrapped up the festival circuit for our most recent short film “Mattress World” which screened on both coasts within the span of a month which made for a lot of travel, but we were pleased to discover that we are beginning to become “regulars” at some of our favorite festivals including the LA Women’s Film Festival and the Litchfield Hills Film Festival!

Once the excitement from our festival days calmed down we began making excellent headway on our upcoming projects. Our next short film, entitled “Recalculating” was awarded a generous grant from the Elgin Arts Fund in Elgin, IL: a city where we hope to shoot the film when the time comes. “Recalculating” tells the story of a man making the difficult emotional journey to reconnect with his daughter; although the way is difficult he has the trusty guidance of a rather remarkable GPS device.

Just as the journey in “Recalculating” takes some unexpected turns, so too did our production schedule take an unexpected detour with the production of our first feature film “Dark Before Dawn.” Inspired by the “mumblecore” style of filmmaking that features ultra-low-budget, ultra-low-tech production techniques and a largely improvised script. “Dark Before Dawn” follows the developing friendship between a man and a young woman who finds herself stranded in Elgin after sleeping through her train stop. We shot the entire film in four days (over the span of three months) and are currently in the final stages of post-production. With luck we will have the pleasure of premiering the finished film in February 2012.

Along with working on all these productions this past year Blue Damen Pictures has been working to build stronger connections to the communities that support us.  As you may have noticed, much of our support for productions in 2011 was from the Elgin community. We were pleased to support the Elgin Short Film Festival in their third annual year and our director, Gwydhar, had the honor and the privilege of  speaking at the groundbreaking for a new ArtSpace building that, once constructed, will provide affordable work/live space for artist in downtown Elgin.

Behind the scenes there are some big changes within the Blue Damen pictures team this year as well: we will be expanding to form a Chicago based team AND a Los Angeles based team. Working in unison our goal is for these two groups to build larger and stronger ties to the filmmaking industry and, as a result, build larger and stronger films! We recently welcomed our first new team member Scott Beattie on board and we look forward to having the chance to work with him throughout the coming year.

As we move forward into 2012 we can't help but feel optimistic. The past few years have been marked by struggle and uncertainty for many of our team members in many areas of life, but we have persevered and believe that the best is yet to come.  So from all of us to all of you, best wishes for the New Year and may your 2012 be filled with good luck, good fortune and good health.


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