Support NYU Thesis Film “Miss Ellis Island”
Myself and partner Rachel Wenitsky are co-directing our final NYU thesis film, “Miss Ellis Island.” We were recently accepted to Indiegogo, a website that accepts donations for creative projects. See Miss Ellis Island IndieGogo page.
Last September, my friend and I spent one of our last precious summer days on an adventure to Ellis Island. As we waited for our ferry to Ellis Island, I gazed out on the Statue of Liberty. Through the sepia color of my sunglasses, she embodied a timelessly fey quality. Looking at her, I felt as though I was seeing this symbol of America, Beauty and Liberty through the same sepia tinted eyes of every immigrant that passed under her bright torch into America in times before me. I was charged with a feeling of uncontainable excitement and hope – I felt in that moment as if the whole world unfolded its arms to me for the taking. Then our ferry docked. Printed on the side of the boat in a red cursive type, “Miss Ellis Island.” And thus, the idea for Miss Ellis Island was born.
This past fall, a Zoe Worth, Rachel and myself co-created a script together, titled “Miss Ellis Island,” inspired by my summer adventure to Ellis Island. The film follows the story of Freda, a young Jewish peasant girl who leaves her parents in THE OLD COUNTRY and ventures to AMERICA to compete in the annual MISS ELLIS ISLAND beauty pageant in the hopes of winning a wealthy American husband and gaining acceptance in the golden land of opportunity. At its heart, the film is the essence of the American dream, told through the eyes of a young immigrant. Using this fictitious beauty pageant as a portal into our differing and diverse pasts, I want to explore the way migration structures at Ellis Island at the turn of the century have seemingly helped to shape America’s contemporary views on sexuality, gender, desire, and family in unexpected ways.
Our goal is shoot on 16mm black and white negative film to capture the essence of the era. But in our current digital age, film and film cameras are harder and harder to come by - not to mention the costly expense of film itself. Our ability to make this period film is dependent on our funding. Please see the link below to make a donation today! Help Freda’s dream become a reality!
The project was created by:
Director of Photography: Paul Perez
Production Designer: Elizabeth Kelly
Costume Designers: Daisy Hamilton and Ellpetha Tsivicos
Featuring performances from Alden Ehrenreich, Zach Webber, Zoë Worth, Eddie Vona, Kyle Hester and Anni Weisband
Produced by Zoë Worth and Izak Rappaport
With the invaluable help of The Collectin (Alden Ehrenreich and Zoë Worth)
PLEASE VISIT The Miss Ellis Island INDIEGOGO PAGE TO MAKE A DONATION TO OUR SHOW!
Thank you for your support,