The concept of a dystopia in literature began in the 20th Century. Brave New World and 1984 were societies that broke out of war and reconstituted themselves as top down command economies. In Brave New World control is effected by pleasure while in 1984, terror is the motivating principle.
Dystopia has a long history in film. The most recent incarnation is the Hunger Games series. It was merely a matter of time before someone used the name itself in a movie. Here in New England, we have a local team working on it.
Dystopia did not start out as a movie. It started out as an idea for a music video for one the songs of composer Andrew Bard. It took on a life of its own and grew into a script. Andrew’s partner in their Neo Phoenix Studios, Janet Lavina, began contacting actors whom she felt were right for the parts once they felt the story was solid.
There is a fine crop of thespians to call upon locally and Janet and Andrew have harvested well. William Decoff, Reesa Guerra, Kristi Lynn and Eric Eastman have all been active regionally and were the first approached.
William Decoff is one of the team behind horror movie shop, Harvest Tide Productions. He is a retired cop and former professional wrestler with a long acting career. William will play Enoch, A complicated hero with a silent inner strength. Janet, as director, gave the actor creative freedom to develop the character.
Young as Reesa Guerra is, she has been around awhile. She was part of the Oldbury Hill web series that filmed in 2008. On that set, she was able to make many lasting connections. Reesa has also worked on such productions as Gone Baby Gone and Body of Proof. In Dystopia, Reesa will play a tough sniper firing a 1943 Mosin Nagant with some interesting artwork on the stock.
Maybe it’s a stretch to say Kristi Lynn, actress, stunt woman and black belt holder was born to be a warrior goddess, but its not a too much of one. In the role of Octavia Kardos, she plays the expert weapons smith who, through some twists and turns becomes stalwart in the resistance.
Kaveh Benedict, the aspiring High Lord and organizer of resistance is portrayed by Eric Eastman. It is a role that is a good fit for him. Of course, anyone familiar with Eric’s work knows he is a versatile actor. From the noble knight-errant of Ghost Bridge to the vicious pimp of 3rd Shift: Michael’s Lament he can fill a screen.
Andrew Bard met Rajah Samaroo, impresario of Edge Infinity Studios at the 2013 Motif awards. Rajah, after some back and forth, signed on as DP. As time went on, the rest of the cast was fleshed out and the movie was made.
The Dystopia premiere will be at 7:00 p.m., February 1st at the Pawtucket Visitor Center, 175 Main Street, Pawtucket, RI 02860. Admission is $10. There will be a special presentation of a Rajah Samaroo short film.
Below is a list of the characters and their backgrounds.
Enoch Alexandros: Founding member of The Resistance. Enoch has made it his mission to overthrow the New Parliament and help Kaveh claim his rightful place as High Lord.
Jairus Perparim: Once an esteemed doctor in Capitol Cities hospital he now fights as a key member of The Resistance after Zylphia closed the hospital to turn it into The Plague Doctors dominion.
Octavia Kardos: Octavia was highly regarded as an expert weapons smith and created and repaired the Parliament Guards weapons and gear. When Zylphia took control of the Parliament she killed anyone who did not take allegiance with her. Octavia escaped and met Enoch a couple of weeks later forming The Resistance.
Minerva Buho: Once The High Lords personal sharp shooter Minerva became a target of Zylphia after she witnesses the assassination of The High Lord. Near Death after a small battle against a squad of New Parliament Guards Minerva met Donar and together they found The Resistance and took up arms with them.
Donar Edwin: The Leader of the Grimm Gang Donar has made it his new mission to run an underground trading route to the citizens of Capitol City and brings food, medicine and clothing to the people living in the Burrows. Donar's connections to the seedier parts of Capitol City has proven invaluable to The Resistance.
Kaveh Benedict: On the day of The High Lords ball it was to be announced that Kaveh was to take over the role as High Lord until the assassination and attempted assassination of Kaveh. He went into hiding trying to gather information and people brave enough to stand against the New Parliament.
Imelda Kraftig: Being a smuggler and leader of a small band of bandits, thieves and pirates Imelda used her resources to hide Kaveh and keep him safe. Through her network of the underground in Capitol City she has stayed with Kaveh since he went into hiding, moving from safehouse to safehouse acting as Kaveh's bodyguard.
Cosette Loreto: An Aristocrat living in the Chatham District she has uncovered the truth behind Zylphia and the New Parliament. She secretly helps the resistance by giving them information on Zylphias movements all the while trying to protect her Daughter Eliza.
Eliza Loreto: Cosette's daughter Eliza begins to question what is happening around her and upon discovering her close friend Silas who is nicknamed "Kid" she begins to aid him by bring small amounts of food and medicine as well as telling him everything she sees by sneaking around the High Lords personal quarters.
Kid: Once an Aristocratic boy who grew up with Eliza as a friend Kid now lives as a homeless orphan in the Burrows after Zylphia banishes Kid and his parents to the Burrows after they questions how Zylphia became High Lord. Enoch has taken him in and keeps him safe.
Zylphia Lucius: At one time Zylphia was the respected head of the Parliament Guard and regarded well by the people and The High Lord. When she discovers that it would be Kaveh and not her to be made the new High Lord she enacts a plan with her second in command Erebus to kill the High Lord before his announcement and takes the title of High Lord.
Erebus Balder: Erebus who is now the new head of the Parliament Guard works with Zylphia to kill anyone who stands against their reign and control of the City making The Resistance their number 1 target. Knowing that Kaveh is still out there Erebus finds his torturous and archaic methods to be most effective in gathering information and created the Interrogation Room for such tasks.