Miami Indie Film After The Wedding Launches All-Or-Nothing Fundraiser
Claudia Cifuentes: The inspiration came from a few elements. I started writing the script a couple years ago after I got married and kind of knew that I wanted to write something romantic. I wasn't really seeing movies about newlyweds--usually movies tend to cover up to the part where there's a wedding, but doesn't really show what happens after the wedding and what the marriage is like. And then also, I was really inspired by the city of Miami. I've wanted to do something in Miami for quite a long time, so I sort of organically just started putting these pieces together and came up with the concept of After The Wedding.
How far along are you in the filmmaking process?
Right now, we launched the Kickstarter campaign and we are looking to raise our funds of $75,000 by May 26th so that we can shoot our movie in July. We are moving slowly but surely along, and we're really hopeful that Miami is going to come out and show their support of a small, but independent film in Florida.
Where do you plan on shooting in Miami?
We're looking to shoot specifically in the Wynwood and the Design District area. It's a very exciting place to be right now and I feel like there's a lot of really cool stuff coming out of that area. We would love to showcase that area as well as Miami Beach.
Can you tell us more about the leading star of the film?
The film stars Nick Puga, who I actually went to Palmetto High School with. He was the typical class clown and I was a quiet introvert. We kind of just stayed in touch through Facebook and over the years, I would see his commercials when he was making it in L.A. Then when it came time for casting, I knew I needed to get somebody kind of charismatic and funny to bring the role to life, so I kind of just messaged him through Facebook and told him, "Hey, I'm putting together this project, do you want to get yourself on tape?" In 24 hours, he took a rather serious piece I had written and put a spin on it -- it was really hilarious and I knew he was right for the role.
What is the entertainment industry lacking that you feel you and your film can help change?
I just feel like we're at a point now where there is definitely a lot more Latinos and diversity in the industry, but in terms of the way Latinos are portrayed, I kind of would like it be a little more contemporary. I believe that in the next few years we're hopefully going to see a lot more voices coming from Miami and people telling their story. There are just a lot of points of view I feel are not really being captured right now, and I feel like in the past it's been a little limited, but now we should be moving towards the point where we're focusing on the characters' humanity, not their nationality.
Is there a message you hope After The Wedding will help get across?
I think it's really just a story of hope and ultimately, a love story. The story is about a guy who goes to Miami to work on his novel and he becomes emotionally intimate with a sexy bartender while he's down there. Without giving too much away, the whole incident serves as a catalyst for them to kind of be a little more real with each other. I personally like stories that are real, but that are also hopeful.
Are you confident you will meet your goal?
I do. We're putting a lot of faith in Miami. I feel like there's kind of a spark and movement in Miami happening that my sisters and I would really like to be a part of. I mean, people like the Borscht kids are doing an amazing job of producing content, and people like Diliana Alexander are doing an amazing job of promoting the industry down there. We just really want to be a part of that movement, so I think that for us, we're just really relying on Miami and hopefully, we get to work with Miami on this.
What do you have in store for donors to your Kickstarter project?
We've got some really fun incentives -- everything ranging from signed copies of DVD's to attending our wrap party hosted by Sebastian Puga, to my mom teaching how to make empanadas. It's really a kind of grassroots, fun Miami project so I really hope that people will check it out. I also really hope this encourages Miami in general. I feel we're kind of a tap resource, and a way for Miami to say, "Hey, let's make some noise!"
Want to see After The Wedding on the big screen? Visit the Kickstarter campaign here.
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