Message from the Director:
This is an idea that's been in my head in some form or another for almost 4 years now. During my first year in college in the winter of 2012, I had called a taxi to take me to the airport to see my family back home. A lot of other kids were doing this at my dorm, and by accident I took a different cab. I hadn't realized until the guy I called asked me where I was-- the guilt set in immediately. It was a relatively small deal, but I just couldn't stop thinking about that taxi driver and how I might have affected him.
Eventually, I started turning out drafts of an initial story and when I finally felt I had something to show people, I workshopped my script to those whose opinions on storytelling I valued most.
Unfortunately, the criticism was largely quite discouraging. This also was at a time in my life, when I had really started to question my goals in filmmaking. Coupled with other personal factors, the criticism I got felt like rejection to me, and I almost took an extended break from film. I didn't know what else to do. I forgot about my script for a good 7 months and tried to figure out what I was doing.
A lot had happened in my life from the time I had the initial idea that colored the emotional impact of the story. The story would still follow these same characters, but it would take place over a single night.
The taxi driver would be a man old enough to be resigned to the unfortunate realities of life, the bitter state of his marriage after the untimely loss of his son, and an a passive acceptance of these things, when he encounters a customer who bears a striking resemblance to the boy and wonders who he might have been years later.
The young man would be modeled after myself and my own experiences at a very specific moment of uncertainty in my life. He would be spending his last night at home in Richmond before getting on a plane to leave early the next morning, but there would be one bit of unfinished business for him: the girl that he's arranged to meet with one last time to gain some closure on a past he hasn't been able to let go of, only she might not be able to make it.
It became clearer what the story was really about now. It was about the feelings of disconnection and aloneness we all experience. It was about the pain of loss and also the pain of discovery. There was something so close to me in these emotions that I knew it had to be a part of others' experiences as well. I knew this could really be a film that showed people that these feelings aren't exclusive, that we all despair at times, but that we are together in our hopes.
By last Fall I finally had the first draft of my new script, and as I continued revising and improving it, I approached the people who I thought would believe in the film and bring their own unique talents to make it possible.
I brought on Hyekang a good friend and alumni of my film school, as a producer that I knew could connect with the emotional content, while coming up with practical steps for putting it together.
Next I talked to Andy, a friend who's been one of the most important mentors I've had, about shooting the film on super 16mm. I'm excited to grow even closer with each of these people as we shape this thing together.
By the time our film is complete (our goal is Spring of 2017), we aim to show it at various local venues, submit it to major festivals in Virginia like the Virgina Film Festival and Richmond International Film Festival, and finally, submit it to major international festivals like Sundance, Toronto, and South By Southwest. If we meet with success at these venues and are able to garner more support, there is the possibility of expanding the project into a feature film that introduces new characters and points of view and shows the passage of time in new locations within a contained universe.
I can only imagine that as the process goes on we'll grow more and more involved and invested. For me, filmmaking is about more than creating art or entertainment, it is about the entire process of developing an idea and bringing people together to execute it, and in the process, learning more about them and sharing some amazing experiences. Thank you for being a part of it.