Kitzinger Wins Best Director Award at La Femme Film Festival

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Thu, 11/19/2009 - 19:00 -- Nick Dager

Hope for a Thorn a microbudget digital feature film written and directed by Erin Kitzinger won the Best Director prize following its world premiere at LA Femme Film Festival in October. “We’re thrilled to be premiering at a festival that showcases women filmmakers ” says Kitzinger. “After close to five years working on my first feature film I couldn’t wait to share it with an audience.” The film was produced through the University of Central Florida’s new Entrepreneurial Digital Cinema MFA program a unique graduate program that requires its students to finance and produce marketable films on a shoestring budget. Kitzinger and producer Jay Delaney took the challenge seriously. The production kept costs to a minimum furnishing the sets with garage sale finds and theatre department loans casting non-union local actors and relying heavily on student volunteers and the generosity of Central Florida businesses and organizations. The 74-minute film was shot in 21 days in the Orlando area for less than $30 000. “With self distribution and hybrid distribution models becoming much more viable routes for filmmakers we really wanted to keep our breakeven point low to give us the greatest freedom possible in getting this film out to audiences ” says Delaney. Hope for a Thorn tells the story of a wounded grandmother who finds her redemption by helping her granddaughter overcome the cycle of neglect that’s plagued the family for generations. Fighting loss loneliness and madness Victoria and Sophie must rely on each other to find hope for the future. Kitzinger embraced the limitations imposed by the small budget and used the opportunity to focus on character. The resulting film is a highly personal story that features women as the lead characters in tragic and deeply flawed roles in a story about family and second chances. Production company Lasso the Moon Productions co-owned by Kitzinger and producer Jay Delaney plan to make more films following the Hope for a Thorn model. The mission of the LA Femme Film Festival now in its fifth year is to screen films made by women for a world audience and to support and nurture the careers of women in the entertainment industry. Hope for a Thorn LA Femme Film Festival