Michael Walters, producer of the movies The Prodigal and Ruth, has a third movie in
development, My Heart Dies With You. It is a story of a young married couple that begins when the young wife learns from her doctor that death will separate her from her husband by the morning. She fights her fears and selfishness to give her husband one last great night together, believing somehow they can cheat death.
The movie has fast action paced “crazy high speed chase moments. “ It’s the couple’s last night and things get out of hand. The car, a Mustang Shelby GT500 itself becomes a central character. The movie has playful laughter and tender, moving moments too. In the end as a writer and a director, Michael Walters feels confident the story will bring an audience to tears, which he feels is important, initiating a cleansing process for each member of the audience. He feels this emotional response will help get a message across with a lasting impact.
Michael's goal has been to bring a story about a young vibrant married couple past all the Hollywood cliché broken marriages or love triangles, to produce an inspirational story, one that has been designed to foster conversation on topics such as the following: love, regret, life, death and eternal life, topics that most couples in today’s busy lifestyle escape discussing with each other. He hopes that an important film such as this is discussed around the office water cooler the next day or on Facebook. He hopes to get people interested in going on dates and processing the message within this movie, attracting as many people as possible to see it.
The film features George Cisneros as Xavier, Candice Barley as Isabella. Co-stars include Eddie Bauer Jr as George’s sports car enthusiast buddy, “Ray”, Wil J Jackson as the police officer, and Mike Gassaway as Deputy Andersen. Other minor characters are being considered to add to the realism of the film.
The film takes place on historic Galveston Island, where they began filming last summer. They took advantage of the Island’s historic charm, to bring an environment of romance and to showcase Galveston’s comeback from the destruction of Hurricane Ike. Many people dislike the upper Texas Gulf’s murky brown water, but it actually becomes beautiful on film. They utilized many facilities there: Galveston’s Historic strand, the new Pleasure Pier, and the Galveston Bolivar Ferry.
Shooting on the ferry was a challenge because it takes between 15 minutes to 20 minutes to cross and passengers must be back in their cars before it docks. This meant the crew had to unpack, set up, clear an area, shoot some dialogue quickly and get back in our cars. Some of the crew stayed on board for the return trip, while others were required to move the GT500 and any of the support vehicles on each end of each leg, then get back in line and start the process over. In a single day the crew would shoot up to six leg, and they had to do all this during the golden-hour, when the sun light is the best. While they did not have a permit for the film the ferry crews were amazingly helpful to make special accommodations for the film crew, especially if the ferry was not full, when they would clear the back end of the ferry for them.
They filmed everything guerilla style, including a high-speed chase scene with a movie police car. George Cisneros who plays Xavier also did stunt driving, and some of the scenes were shot at 90mph weaving in and out of traffic on the Island’s causeway bridge. To travel at 90mph and see it through a windshield is one thing but it takes on another level of intensity through a viewfinder, that’s for sure. It was funny when they did the chase scene on Bolivar Peninsula, the locals were talking at the convenience store how there was a GT500 being chased by a cop. Speaking of that, they engaged actor, Wil Jackson, who is a police officer in Fort Lauderdale. Michael Walters sent him his lines and he engaged a local shooter to shoot his scenes in Wil’s patrol car. Michael intercut them seamlessly with the movie cop car we shot with a stunt driver on Bolivar peninsula.
The filming stopped three days into the film-making process. They had completed filming a central dialogue sequence on The Strand and broke for lunch. They had an appointment with a lady who had offered to provide the film use of her collection of vintage wedding dresses. Enroute to the meeting, a local driver lost control in a turn, slammed into the Mustang Shelby GT 500, and totaled it. Fortunately, no one was seriously hurt, although they had some intense drama and it took the crew to get Michael to re-engage and do some more filming. Walters said, “I felt like Tom Cruise’s character Maverick in Top Gun, after he lost Goose, and everyone on the team was wondering when Maverick would re-engage.”
Disasters happen when you don’t expect it and Michael Walters cannot say enough to filmmakers and those who work on films to BE INSURED! Protect yourselves. George could have been easily injured for a long period of time, even for life. However, Michael had the peace of mind that if anyone had been seriously hurt, his/her rehabilitation and loss of income would have been covered. They learned about another film which was filming in a community nearby a few months, which encountered a serious accident when a drunk driver slammed into a crew on the side of the road, ruining the picture car, sending several crew members with a range of injuries to the hospital. One it seems was in a coma for a couple days, and unable to work for six or more months. And that production which was much larger in budget than My Heart Dies With You was uninsured, leaving the film community to help raise money for the injured.
After the accident on My Heart Dies With You, the cast recomposed their emotions and from the loss of the car, and pushed on to shoot around scenes that did not involve the continuity of having the car in the scene. The insurance was enough to pay off the car, but it did not get them another car. They also had decided with the summer crowds squeezed into the island that it was not such a good idea to continue and would replace the car at a later date.
During the quiet of the Christmas holidays, Michael decided to take the footage they had to convert it into a 22-minute short as a Proof of Concept to show investors with the purpose to make this a larger budget film. Of course because they did not complete filming, Michael gave the film a different ending.
One thing they enjoyed and from which they greatly benefited with this movie, was all the new friends they made through the movie’s Facebook page. They found a great friend through one of the island’s magazines, who took Michael Walters on a tour one night, showed him the town, and introduced him to some wonderful people in the Galveston community who became sponsors and supporters of the movie. Also, directly through Facebook they gained offers from businesses, which provided them with such things as food, horses, and locations, and a really nice large condo for a weekend for the cast and crew that really helped reduce the costs of production.
Recently, Michael Walters was informed that one of the investors he submitted to is interested in the project. Michael can’t go into details at this time, but they could conceivably receive a substantial amount to complete this film with a larger crew, and even begin the sequel. In the meantime, he launched an Indiegogo campaign through the month of March to raise money to replace the GT500 with a replica of the Shelby GT500 that was totaled. If they can raise the $11,000 for the car, they will plan to continue filming additional car chase sequences until additional funding is secured.
My Heart Dies With You is being produced by Michael’s production company, HD Texas Motion Pictures Company. It hopes to complete filming this fall to release during the Christmas 2013 holidays.
See http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2190690/combined ,
https://www.facebook.com/MyHeartDiesWithYouMovie , and
See the trailer- http://vimeo.com/55053300 .
See the Article My Heart Dies With You, Part One.
See ongoing work on professional, epic, redemptive movies on my Pro Films Facebook site, https://www.facebook.com/groups/profilms13/ .
See recent publications, http://dianehoward.com/Dr_H_sample_publications.htm.
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