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Feature Production Dates!

Happy New Year from Acid Test!

We have a production timeline! With the support of Houston Community College where I teach filmmaking full-time, I have arranged to teach a summer elective course “Shooting the Feature” and use the 5 week course window to shoot the feature adaptation of Acid Test while offering my students the opportunity to gain valuable (and, honestly, rare) experience on a feature film set under the professionals hired for production.

The plan is to shoot for 20 days during June 3 – July 8, more specific dates and times to be set as we break the script down.

To make that happen, I am arranging fiscal sponsorship for the film which will allow us to fundraise for charitable donations that give our donors valuable tax deductions. Acid Test is a good candidate for fiscal sponsorship because it explores political and cultural issues and it’s a vehicle to explore my voice as an artist and provide a learning experience for marginalized and upcoming filmmakers. The reality in indie filmmaking is that it is very hard to turn a profit and give investors a return on their money so with fiscal sponsorship through a non-profit, people who contribute will be able to get something through their tax breaks and we can also partner with other organizations and companies for in-kind donations of goods and services. Once the fiscal sponsorship is finalized, I will be reaching out to people to raise production funds.

I am also looking into grants and other funding avenues and plan to use the momentum from production to do a crowdfunding campaign through Seed&Spark for post-production, much like we did for the short film.

In total, I’m looking to make Acid Test for $60,000. In many ways, this will be a much different production than the short film, which cost over $25,000 and is only 15 minutes. We will need to stretch our dollars, find more donations, and most importantly rely on the dedicated, talented, and efficient work of our cast and crew. While I know not everyone from the short film will be able to work on the feature, my hope is to foster a similar environment of working hard because we all believe in this project and in each other. I’m looking forward to showing off our Houston crew again!

The script has gone through a number of drafts since the Table Read in April and we were finalists for the Middlebury Script Lab. I received incredible feedback from readers over the months and I thank everyone who has contributed their time and creative energy to help shape the story. I am very proud of the direction it’s gone in and the strength of its message and voice. I’ve rooted it in the girls-in-punk aesthetic of the Riot Grrrl movement, a movement that inspired and informed me as a teen and one I don’t see in movies. The story also dives into the characters’ Mexican heritage and I am excited to be promoting more diversity on screen.

The short film continues to screen and, fingers crossed, will continue to have some final festival showings in the spring. We had two wonderful screenings here in Houston at the Alamo Drafthouse in November and at The Secret Group in December with other local films. The film is always a conversation starter and people have been so supportive at every screening. We did good!

Please feel free to reach out to me if you’re interested in joining our production. I will be reaching out to people over the next few months as we finalize casting, locations, crew, and equipment!

Filmmaking is always a risky venture and since this is my debut feature film, my plan is to ask, be open, and put one foot in front of the other to avoid freaking out! I’m grateful to my fellow filmmakers for their guidance and support, especially Michelle Mower (Imagination Worldwide), Molly Vernon (Vernon-McKee Productions), Anna Tran (HCC), Laura Somers (Rich Kids), Courtney Sandifer (Pine Heart Productions), and Joe Grisaffi (Starship Films).

More soon as things shape up!

Fingers crossed, Jenny

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