Tag Archives: Where’s the Lake Productions

Jenni Spiro’s empowering rock song ‘Hey You’ to close ‘Over the Line’

The moment I heard ‘Hey You,’ I knew this was the song that had to accompany the dramatic closing scene of our film! Its riveting message and driven performance combine with the final shot for the movie’s perfect ending.

Jenni Spiro has made quite the reputation for herself as a performer here in New Jersey as well as up and down the east coast. Her writing is powerful, and her guttural delivery is reminiscent of artists like Pat Benatar and Melissa Etheridge.

Regionally, Jenni has rocked out regularly with the popular Jersey band The Benjamins. She also performs solo and duo acoustic gigs along the east coast.

A native of Lake Hopatcong, NJ, Jenni was born into a musical family. Her father is the keyboard player/vocalist for The Nerds, and her mother is bassist and lead vocalist for several Jersey-based bands. Jenni’s talent was first chronicled at the age of three by a reporter who saw her singing pitch-perfect covers atop a milk crate. By the age of seven, she was writing songs. And by 15, she had already mastered the bass and acoustic guitar.

Jenni Spiro joins a talented New Jersey/New York cast and crew that includes director/producer Mathieu Abric, score composer Landon Knoblock, and actors Stacey Van Gorder,  Cronin Cullen and Saba.

A co-production with Cloudy Sky Films, “Over the Line” is a dark comedy about a woman facing a self-imposed judgment day with wit and irreverence.

The script for “Over the Line” has won numerous screenplay competitions. Currently in the final stages of post-production, the film will be seen at film festivals during the second half of 2018 and throughout 2019 as a prelude to distribution.

Listen now to Jenni Spiro’s “Hey You” at Reverb Nation.

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Image caption:
Jenni Spiro’s song “Hey You” has been tapped to close the film “Over the Line,” currently in post-production.

Closing in on the completion of our second film!

We’re about a month away from a final cut of “Over the Line,” our second short film!

So much was learned during the making of these two movies…not only about the process, but also about what it’s like working with different partners, collaborators, actors and crew. It’s become so obvious that no two film projects will ever be alike, for better or worse! But that’s an entirely different blog entry to follow in a couple of weeks. Right now, I just want to catch everyone up on the status of film #2:

Since shooting was completed in March, “Over the Line” has been in a constant state of post production! As you may recall, we shot the film entirely on green screen. To date, here’s what’s been accomplished:

• A preliminary rough cut was assembled. This was quite a task, as we never had the entire cast on set at one time! Yet, under our director’s supervision, everything flows so smoothly!

• The green screen was then removed.

• The background was then shot separately.

• Another rough cut was then assembled with backgrounds in place.

• And a final rough cut was edited just last week.

Here’s what happens next:

• Landon Knoblock has signed on to compose the original score. He will sit down next week with me and co-producer Shari Spiro to “spot” the rough cut for music.

• Saba, our director and editor, will perform color correction, sound editing, ADR and sound mixing while Landon composes and records the score.

• Once these steps are completed, the score will be edited in, as will the credits and the closing song, written and performed by popular New Jersey rocker Jenni Spiro.

A more detailed post as described above will be published soon. In the meantime, please visit the film’s website at www.overtheline-movie.com for cast and crew info as well as a full gallery of shooting images.

P.S.–It’s come to my attention that I have not been receiving all of the emails sent through this site. I am in the process of troubleshooting the problem. In the meantime, if you have written and have not received a reply from me, contact me directly at RMMessinger@gmail.com with “WORD PRESS” in the message bar. Sorry for any inconvenience!

How Plan B turned into Plan A+

My bad! I haven’t posted here in way too long. But I have a really good reason…I’VE BEEN MAKING A MOVIE!

We are actually in the final stages of post production right now, and it’s turning out so much better than I ever could have imagined.

As I mentioned in a previous post, Plan B had its real start when I met Cedric Hill through Mandy.com. Cedric is a 15-year film veteran and an instructor at both the New York Film Academy and Rutgers University Newark. When Cedric first replied to my Mandy posting, I replied to him that I thought his background might be too extensive for my little project, but he asked to see the script anyway. A day later, he got back to me and asked if we could meet. Not next week or in a few months, as so many other respondents had suggested. The next day.

We met on a Saturday over lunch in Montclair, NJ. I explained my no-budget plan to him, and he didn’t seem to flinch. We discussed not only the script and how it came to be, but also film in general. He kind of dug deep into my soul, which was a little unnerving, but somehow I didn’t feel uncomfortable revealing so much about myself (I’ve come to understand that Cedric has a true gift when it comes to getting people to open up and to trust him, which is probably one of the qualities that makes him such a talented director).

As the meeting progressed, he said something to the effect of, “Okay, now let’s talk about what kind of money it will take to make this film.”

I was a bit taken aback, because I’d made it clear that this was to be a no-budget film.

“Well, I have about $800 left from a screenwriting prize,” I replied.

By this time, I was so excited about the progress we’d made over lunch, that my mind started racing, thinking about how to raise more money. Could I even think about asking people to contribute again after two failed crowdfunding attempts (I hadn’t received a cent of what had been raised because I hadn’t reached my lofty goals).

“Well,” I continued, “I was able to raise close to $5000 the last two times. With some work, I could probably convince my supporters to believe in me one more time.”

“That’s a good start,” he said. “And once we have something to show people, we can probably raise some more for post production. When were you planning to shoot?”

“Six weeks,” I said.

“Make it eight,” he responded. “Let’s hold auditions Tuesday. We start rehearsals Thursday.”

I became silent. He knew what I was thinking.

“Place the ad on Mandy. We’ll have plenty of responses.”

“So we’re going to make a movie,” I said as we walked out of the restaurant.

“Yes. We’re going to make a movie.”

(To be continued in future blog entries, and soon…I promise! In the meantime, take a look at this link of Cedric telling a story to The Secret Society Of Twisted Storytellers. It will give you insight as to who he is, why he works with such intensity and passion, and why it it’s so easy to open up to him and love him).

‘Dongmei’ is trending on indiegogo!

Having raised 31 percent of its funding goal in fewer than three days, ‘Dongmei’ is now trending on the crowdfunding site indiegogo.com.

‘Dongmei’ is a short film written and produced by Bob Messinger, a New York-area screenwriter, and directed and executive produced by Cedric Hill, also a New York filmmaker. The project is a joint production of Messinger’s Where’s the Lake Productions and Hill’s To and Fro Productions.

Dongmei is a Chinese woman who ends up in the psych ward after fending off a couple of thugs and then inexplicably attacking the responding police officers. The story is an intense, psychological thriller written to keep audiences guessing throughout. It’s an extreme battle of wits between an intelligent, somewhat wise-ass, medicated and unwilling patient who’s adept at turning a conversation and a psychiatrist who’s overly confident he has what it takes to connect with her. The doctor’s confidence starts to falter, however, as the session intensifies and his combative patient takes charge, interspersing vividly descriptive and surprising accounts of her past with perfectly timed personal attacks on her new sparring partner. Even after the doctor seemingly regains control of the session, forcing Dongmei to face some hazy and painful images, it’s not unreasonable to expect the tables to be turned again to achieve an unexpected and powerful ending that will leave audiences questioning what was real and what wasn’t.

Auditions are scheduled for Tuesday, June 9, in a midtown New York studio. The casting call resulted in close to 100 responses. Principal photography is scheduled to begin on August 1.

To see how the project is trending, go to www.indiegogo.com, click the “See What’s Trending” link at the top, then click on the “Film” link. Or to go directly to the project’s page, go to http://igg.me/at/dongmei.

Los Angeles film and TV actress Ana Harrison signs on for leading role in “Gymful Remembrances”

Ana Harrison is heading to New Jersey.

Ana HarrisonNo, she’s not abandoning Hollywood for the Garden State (although she just might consider relocating once she sees all that Jersey has to offer), but she is coming to north Jersey to star in a movie for Bob Messinger’s new film company, Where’s the Lake Productions.

She has agreed to take the female lead in Messinger’s film “Gymful Remembrances,” currently in pre-production.

Ms. Harrison has had co-starring and principal roles in television programs such as Warner Brothers’ “Felicity,” NBC’s “Love’s Deadly Triangle,” USA’s “Face in the Mirror” and Jerry Peterson’s “Gamers” among others.

Her feature film career includes principal and leading roles in classic independent movies including “Wassup Rockers,” Sundance favorite “EMR,” 2008′s “Reflections,” “My Roommate Larry,” and the soon-to-be-released comedy/horror feature “Get Dead.”

Ms. Harrison holds a BA in Theater Arts from Texas Tech University and has studied dance with Diana Moore. She has also studied under Second City, Toni Cobb, Larry Moss Studios and others.

“Ana is perfect for this role,” says Messinger, and with good reason.

“I actually wrote the role with her in mind, but I never dreamed in a million years that she would come to New Jersey to take it…not with her busy schedule,” he explains.

Messinger and Ms. Harrison met at a trade show in San Francisco in 2003. The company he was working for at the time hired the actress to work with them at the show.

“I was taken aback by her talent, honesty, dedication to her work and zest for life,” says Messinger.

“At that time, I had written several screenplays,” continues Messinger, “but I’d stopped because I’d become discouraged at the impossibility of getting anything read. But Ana’s dedication to her art was contagious, and she convinced me to get back in the game. And I did…the moment I got back to Jersey.”

The two talked a few times again after San Francisco, they’ve exchanged holiday greetings, and they’ve maintained contact via social media. But Messinger never forgot why he’d started writing again, and he never forgot that she had said to him, “One day you’ll write a leading role for me.”

“We’re coming full circle,” says the actress. And both say they couldn’t be more excited.
“Gymful Remembrances” will be a co-production between Messinger’s new production company and Nightstand Studios in Fairfield, NJ. Emmy winner Randy Rossilli is attached to direct.

The production is being funded on Kickstarter at http://kck.st/1hhCvJ0. The funding campaign ends on May 31 at 1:00 PM.