MUSICAL STORY-BOOK MOVIE ... "YES I CAN!!" That's what I said when I decided to make a movie out of my successful, children’s story book trilogy, Beneath the Dragonwood Trees. My focus has always been, family entertainment projects. To create books and films that kids not only want to see and read, but that parents can also enjoy. Stories, whose main characters grow in some meaningful way.
In 1998 I created the West Coast Arts Foundation
a (501(c)3 venue who's mission is the production of creative projects. Raising sponsorship funds for children who wish to learn the craft of theatre and dance and the opportunity to perform with professional mentors, where creativity and diversity come together. That is and was my goal.
The Musical Story-Book Film:
As a black, female filmmaker, I wanted to create a multicultural fairy tale: think... The Wizard of OZ, Peter and the Wolf … with dialects from Yiddish and Chicano, to the Deep South. Set in an Enchanted forest with Puppet narrators, a wild-haired Witch and her talking Broomstick, a Wolf with attitude, leprechauns, fairies and elves. I've composed original songs and music in styles from classical to Rap.
The film version includes all the elements of a traditional fairy tale reborn with a multicultural cast of characters aged seven to seventy (or maybe 80?) in a visual fiesta sprinkled with fairy dust, original hand-drawn animations (by yours truly), original costumes, and theatrical, comedic details. The cast is diverse and inclusive so that kids and adults of all ages can see themselves represented.
Peter, a young Hispanic boy, gets lost in the woods with his feathered and furry trio of friends in a vainglorious search for the wolf (Ravenous E. Lee) and a badge of honor. Peter is kept from harm along the way by the fairies and spirits of the forest, and he learns a great lesson – that the love between family and friends is more valuable than any badge.
How You Can Help:
With the music already recorded, Director and creative force Margot Elaine Jones has brought in the talents of her professional colleagues and WCAF students to get much of the footage for Part One “in the can.” We now need funds to continue to edit the film a combination of live action, puppetry and animation, with the skill and creativity of editor/cameraman Barry Stone
Creating the elements of this film has been a labor of love. With your generous tax-deductible support we hope to finish part one of the trilogy as a proof of concept to go to film festivals and pursue funding of the full Dragonwood Trilogy; a 90-minute musical fantasy the whole family can enjoy