Alum greets film industry with fresh project

For those who have watched HBOÕs The Wire, fans know that its sense of gritty drama and realism reel viewers in with an iron grip.

Writer Alex Thompson and UVM alum Will Trowbridge are attempting to bring that same feel into their first joint film project ÒThis Party Off Mulholland,Ó that is currently seeking funding on Kickstarter.com.

Graduating just three months ago in December 2012, Trowbridge was determined not to waste time getting behind a camera. After studying film in Prague and dedicating four years to UVMÕs film studies department as well as founding the film club, he said it was time to get out of Burlington.

ÒBurlington is a tough place to be for film,Ó Trowbridge said.

ÒThis Party Off MulhollandÓ is a 20-minute film about the magic of Hollywood and the L.A. party scene, he said. It tells the story of a second assistant film director who tells a bright-eyed golfer a Òcolorful and cautionary tale,Ó according to the pairÕs video on Kickstarter.

ÒIt tells a story that nobody else is telling,Ó Thompson said. ÒItÕs a badass film.Ó

Thompson, who studied with Trowbridge, wrote the script from Chicago while Trowbridge was back in Vermont. ÒHe wrote it completely separate from me, then sent it along and asked if I wanted in on the film,Ó Trowbridge said. Naturally, he hopped on board and planning was underway.

Inspired by The Wire, Thompson sent the completed script to Delaney Williams, a featured actor in the series. He was immediately drawn to the idea and had plenty of recommendations to offer as well.

Their Kickstarter page is backing the film, which is currently in its pre-production phase. Trowbridge and Thompson said their goal is to reach $20,000 by April 15 in order to cover all expenses related to the film.

They are about a fourth of the way there so far. Nonetheless, Trowbridge said he thinks they have a realistic chance in meeting their goal.

ÒThere are a number of things that could happen,Ó he said. ÒKickstarter works in mysterious ways.Ó

When the project is completed, they plan to enter the final result into film festivals around the country including major names such as Tribeca in New York City and Telluride in Telluride, Colo. The team is set to shoot in May.

Even with all the growing excitement of the film, Trowbridge said he is still in touch with faculty who inspired him at UVM.

ÒDeb Ellis is a great friend and I consider her my mentor,Ó said Trowbridge.

He had this to say to filmmakers studying at UVM:

ÒGet out of Burlington! There is some opportunity there but during your summers you really have to look elsewhere and get a hold of what is going to be there after college. You canÕt just say ÔI went to UVM for filmÕ,Ó he said. ÒThatÕs not enough.Ó

To support ÒThis Party Off Mulholland,Ó back them on Kickstarter: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/alexthompson/this-party-off-mulholland.

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