Watch and vote for "Back to Fort Russell" at www.wymoingshortfilmcontest.com
“Back to Fort Russell” was born rather rapidly. I had been required by The New York Film Academy to produce a 15-minute film. Simultaneously my Producer, Radhika Lahiri, had just attended a producing convention where she met the good folks at the Wyoming Film Office and learned of the short film contest. It was almost destiny. We were already developing a feature film to be shot in Cheyenne Wyoming and this was the perfect opportunity to get our hands dirty; shooting on the RED ONE camera, working with this specific team, and taking on a challenging story set in Wyoming. Of all the scripts we were looking at, “Back to Fort Russell” was the only logical choice.
It’s the moving story of a war veteran struggling with his inner demons, and a frantic young woman who’s had the worst life can throw at someone. The wilderness binds the two together and forces them to see each other on a human and emotional scale. Greif, shame, justice, self-defense, and redemption are all themes carried through this film. The performances of Kevin Dorian and Daniela Flynn are stellar and I couldn’t have asked for better players.
Visuals and music drive films, guiding them through the emotional ups and downs as we journey with the characters to a fantastic climax. Director of Photography Gonzalo Digineo, and Composer Austin Lawrence are the best in the game. Gonzalo’s dynamic camera shots and lighting brought the rouged natural feel of a western alive. Because half the movie takes place at night there was a necessity to replicate fire and moonlight, challenges he was more than ready to take on. The scale of music in most westerns is dogmatic and predictable but Austin habitually takes the road less traveled, a great benefit to a director such as me. The music takes on a grander persona and envelops the listener in a quest across the Wyoming west. Working in tandem these two elements give the film a unique cinematic experience that’s sure to awe audiences.
Radhika and myself are thrilled to have headed such a great project and a crew of extraordinary people. As “Back to Fort Russell” continues to gather steam we hope to solicit investors for our feature. As a whole I feel this movie not only encapsulates the talents of its performers and crew, but also keeps alive the magic that continues to bring us time and again to the theater.
- R.D. Womack II,
Director, “Back to Fort Russell”