Several days ago, this writer published an article on Raines Down Productions and their film entry into the "Louisiana Film Prize." At that time, I promised an interview with Candace McGowen and Christopher Raines, who are partners in Raines Down Productions, and here it is. They will be talking about their company and their film, "5ive Courses."
EX: Hello Candace and Chris. I keep hearing good things about your production company, Raines Down Productions, and a film, "5ive Courses," that you have entered into the Louisiana Film Prize. I wrote an initial article about it several days ago, but the readers want to know more.
Before we get started I just want to say I'm very proud of you guys for taking your energy out of the local area, and letting the world know that there are some great independent film production companies in the Memphis Metropolitan Area.
CANDACE: Thank you, and we are excited as this opportunity.
EX: I guess my first question is to Candace. Why did you and Chris decide to partner up in Raines Down Productions?
CANDACE: We seemed to have the same creative ideas and goals for film making , and we both had a shared vision on how we see the future of Memphis film making.
EX: Chris, what can you add to what Candace has related?
CHRISTOPHER: Along with a shared vision, Raines Down is successful because it is a team where we hold each other accountable and are able to push our own ideas into something collectively great.
EX: Okay, so you two decided to work together, which I think is fantastic. When two people with the drive and dedication you and Chris have get together, big things are bound to happen. Candace what prompted you guys to enter the Louisiana Film Prize Competition?
CANDACE: Chris and I had met with David Merrill, from Fuel Film, and he had mentioned to us about the LA Film Prize. The idea seemed really exciting and challenging since the requirements are to shoot the entire film in the Shreveport, LA area. After deciding to do it, we found an all Memphis based cast and crew, and they volunteered their time and expertise to come down to Shreveport and shoot our film in three days.
EX: Chris, tell us about the film, "5ive Courses." Also, who are the actors, director and crew members that are involved in it?
CHRISTOPHER: "5ive Courses" is about a couple, Ross and Beth, going on their two year anniversary dinner to a special restaurant that offers a 5 course dinner. Both characters have an idea of where this meal will take them. After going through some various course of events, they each learn a lesson about relationships they did not expect. I directed it, and it stars Candace and Dennis Phillippi, along with Jeremy Holloway, Emma Macmillian, and Jared Callan. The crew was Jared, Drew Russom, Christian Ball and Gabriella Erwin. The film was written by Duane P. Craig, based on a story by Chris.
EX: Candace, was it an easy film to shoot?
CANDACE: Yes, we had a prepared cast and an experienced crew, along with the support we received from the people of Shreveport was amazing and unexpected. The owners of the location we filmed, Healthy Chef Meals, treated us like family. Millennium Studios opened up their entire prop warehouse to us, and gave us full access, including an original painting by Sylvester Stallone that you can see in the background of the film. And the staff from LA Film Prize welcomed us and helped us in any way we needed.
EX: Chris, what do you and Candace plan to do with the prize money if you win? Also, is there prize money for 2nd and 3rd place?
CHRISTOPHER: The prizes are only for the first 5 places, which includes iTunes distribution. If we win the grand prize, we will first pay our cast and crew, and the remaining will open up some great opportunities for us to invest in future planned projects, which include the Kid Vid project, where we will introduce a writing contest for middle schoolers for them to write a short story, and the winner will have Raines Down Productions shoot their story, and have a red carpet viewing event for all of Memphis to see. We are also in the process of developing a web series that we want to start shooting in early 2014. There are also a couple of shorts we want to get into production soon as well. But, all of these projects require significant funds for them to happen.
EX: Well, hopefully you will have the funds when this contest ends. In closing, what advice would you give others who are thinking about forming a production company?
Candace and Chris agree, "Never take a venture like this on by yourself. Know what you are good at, and be prepared to bring others in to help develop your tool belt."
I thank you both for your time, and we in the Memphis area wish you, the cast and crew great success in this contest and in the all the future projects of Raines Down Productions.
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