Buried


TYPE
: Narrative Short
GENRE: Drama
STATUS: Pre-Production

LOGLINE

Buried, a hybrid narrative and experimental film, explores the physical and surreal surrounding work burnout, stress and rage.

SYNOPSIS

The lyrical narrative follows a winemaker plagued by stress and sickness who is convinced her vineyard is being poisoned, until a sinister presence reveals the truth around her chaotic and mysterious illness. With stylized terrains, bold scores and physical soundscapes Buried explores how self-compassion is difficult to channel when we push ourselves to exhaustion.

ARTISTIC STATEMENT

I will approach the tone of Buried, similar to Waves (http://www.nataliegee.com/waves-1), through a suspense and thriller genre. The horror will be used to show Eva's (Lily Baldwin) incapacity to cope. I will keep the exteriors natural and raw and the interiors controlled and cared for, using saturated and rich light. The cinematography will begin steady, slowly morphing into choatic handheld. 16mm film creates a cinematic aesthetic that’s genuine and visceral. I will embrace the depth and nuances of analog through nature, textures and details, while an experiential sound design will capture lyrical notes of weather, wind, birds and vines. The editing will capture the rhythm of an internal emotional trauma, similar to a weather storm with chopping, fast cuts juxtaposed with long suspenseful takes.  

My stories deliver visceral impressions through what is felt but doesn’t always fit into words. I use stylized compositions to investigate feelings and spaces of unworthiness. I play around with surreal images and meanings to open up emotions that are better felt unspoken. I like to ask how can I take my experience and bring an audience on a journey through them. By creating work with mixed genres but grounded in emotional fullness, I continue to ask myself how far I can explore the depths of my own personal experiences in imaginative storytelling. I expand on ways of working by executing my vision through disciplined planning and rehearsal. I collaborate with artists keen on risk to cultivate deeply personal and intimate work.

KEY CREW

Natalie Gee - Writer, Director, Producer

Natalie was made in England, assembled in Australia and is a direct import to NYC. She's a filmmaker and festival programmer based in Brooklyn. Her shorts have premiered at Oscar Qualifying festivals in the US and overseas. Most recently she wrote and directed Waves, a dance narrative starring Lily Baldwin that is premiering at the Maryland Film Festival. Her experimental short Queendom was featured on NoBudge and nominated for Best Experimental film at the Miami Short Film Festival. Natalie has shadowed Oscar nominated director Steph Green on HBO's The Deuce with James Franco and Maggie Gyllenhaal. She's a programmer for Santa Barbara, HollyShorts and Aesthetica film festival and has curated feminist film nights at the Brooklyn Museum. She's previously been on the screening committee for Telluride, Tribeca and Hamptons Film Festival. 

Alván Prado - Cinematographer

Alván has a degree in Performing Arts from the Universidad Mayor in Peru and studied directing and cinematography in Argentina, Cuba, France and Canada. In 2017, he won the EFTI International Center of Photography and Cinema Scholarship to study a Master in Cinematography, where he had professors such as Christian Berger and Luca Bigazzi. Alván has worked as a director and director of photography for various film projects that have been developed in countries such as the Czech Republic, Canada, Spain, France and Chile. In 2020 the short film "La Hoguera" where he worked as director of photography was selected in the NEST section of the San Sebastian International Film Festival. In 2021, his short film "Something like the Night" that Alván directed, was selected in the NEST section of the San Sebastian International Film Festival.

Lily Baldwin - Eva (lead)

A formidable talent based in NYC, Berlin and LA, Baldwin is known for her compelling, intricate narrative forms. As director, and frequent performer, she combines her penchant for dance and film to craft visceral stories and stylized dreamscapes. Her works have screened at major festivals including Sundance, SXSW, Berlinale, and Venice. Her shorts are featured on The Criterion Channel, Netflix, Amazon, Filmmaker Magazine, NOWNESS and Vimeo Staff Pick. Independent Magazine named her one of "10 Filmmakers to Watch” and The New York Times says her “work has a visceral power similar to Cronenberg’s.” Lily is a Sundance Institute New Interdisciplinary Program Grantee.

Amelia Spitler - Producer

Amelia Spitler is a filmmaker. Her focus is in producing and coordinating both independent and larger narrative projects. Amelia received her BFA in Filmmaking from Montclair State University. Post-graduation, Amelia began her professional career at Big Beach Films, where her passion for creative development and producing ignited. Following her craft, Amelia has since coordinated several feature and short films, including Emma Seligman’s Shiva Baby feature (John Cassavetes Award, Independent Spirit Awards 2022), Nicholas Ma’s Mabel, and Roger Mancusi & Katie Schiller’s Columbarium.

In 2020, Amelia’s first short as producer, Ex Disposer, was nominated for Best U.S. Student Film at the Palm Springs International ShortFest.  Outside of producing, Amelia writes her own scripts focusing on her identity as a lesbian artist. Outside of the independent world, Amelia was the Production Secretary for Dopesick (Fox 21/Disney/Hulu) and the D.C. unit of Rustin (Netflix). She currently is the Producer’s Assistant on season ten of Chicago Fire (NBCU/Wolf Entertainment). Amelia happily resides with her girlfriend and dachshund in Chicago, IL. 

Johnny Sanchez - Jorge

With over three decades of experience in the entertainment industry, Johnny is a multi-passionate actor, writer and producer. Johnny has worked with such great directors as Steven Soderbergh, Michael Bay, Sidney Lumet, Frank Oz, Arthur Hiller, John Badham, Hugh Wilson; to name a few. Wanting to represent a wider range of stories, Johnny started writing. He co-wrote A THROUGH M. Produced in Association with the American Film Institute (AFI), it won Best Dramatic Short Film. His latest short screenplay SPIC (based on true events from his youth) was awarded 1st Place at Diverse Voices/WeScreenplay Competition 2020, won Finalist at the Blue Cat 2019 Screenplay Competition, and placed Third at the 2020 Vail Film Festival Screenplay Contest. His feature screenplay - AMERICAN BUBBLE (in active development) has ranked in the top 5% of feature screenplays; most notably at Austin Film Festival Screenwriting Competition and The Black List. As a producer, Johnny co-produced FIND ME GUILTY directed by Sidney Lumet, and starring Vin Diesel & Peter Dinklage. He also co-produced EVEN MONEY, starring Academy Award Winners Kim Basinger & Forest Whitaker.

Zeus Kontoyannis - Producer

Zeus Kontoyannis is a producer and writer with more than a decade of experience in the film industry. He began his career at Cinetic Media, working on the Banksy documentary “Exit Through the Gift Shop.” After a short time at Cinetic, he got an opportunity to work under veteran Hollywood and Broadway producer Scott Rudin. During his time at SRP, Zeus worked on films including “The Social Network,” “True Grit,” “The Dictator,” and the original theater production of “Book of Mormon.” He’s also boarded projects produced by Terry Leonard, Mynette Louie, Peter Berg, and Academy Award Winning director Ross Kauffman.

As an independent producer, he develops new, compelling projects under his company Zeus Pictures. His films have screened at Sitges, SXSW, Tribeca, Fantastic Fest, Cleveland International, Sarasota, Tallgrass, L.A. Shorts, Athens International Film and Video Festival, Santa Barbara, Fantaspoa, and many others. As he continues to write, produce, and acquire feature length projects, he is also developing his first television series with a veteran TV writer/showrunner and Sundance Film Festival adviser.

Andre Basso - Producer / VFX artist

For over a decade, Andre Basso has worked in the film and television industry as a producer, VFX artist, Flame artist and colorist. Many of the films he has worked on have premiered at prestigious festivals around the world, including Venice Film Festival, Toronto International Film Festival and Tribeca Film Festival.  In 2021, a short doc he produced, “Sixth of June”, made the finalist long-list for the 93rd Academy Awards. He’s currently in post-production on a feature length comedy about American Politics, “Can’t Let It Go,” starring Mario Cantone and executive produced by academy award winning writer, James Ivory.

In addition, Andre runs his own boutique creative studio, 9th Street Films, where he produces original content for a variety of corporate and non-profit clients. Past clients include UNICEF, Girl Scouts of the USA, Pfizer, and the Smithsonian Institute. 9th Street Films also provides a range of production and post-production services to filmmakers, video artists and commercial directors. Andre has taught courses in post-production at The Gotham Film & Media Institute, as recently as February 2020.

Huda Haqqani - Production Designer

Huda Haqqani was born in Islamabad, Pakistan, and came to Brooklyn in 2008 while attending the NYU Tisch School of the Arts. Her work has been seen in the short films Tina (2019), which was awarded the Dark Side Award at the Art Of Brooklyn Film Festival that year, and A Period Piece, which premiered at SXSW 2020. Her approach to production design is to always ensure the visual and scenic elements of every scene are chosen with intention to enhance the subtext and emotional impact of the piece.

Jeff Ayars - Co-Producer

Jeff Ayars is a filmmaker, actor and co-founder of comedy duo Cannibal Milkshake, known for viral sketches with over 45M views and 115K followers on Tik Tok. Notably, Jeff has played Bradley Cooper on Comedy Central and Captain American on Funny or Die, produced & starred in the 2019 indie horror feature This Is Our Home, played Thomas Jefferson in a 2022 Super Bowl ad, and recently guest-starred on CBS’s FBI: International

Rema Sayge - Executive Producer

As a lifelong NYer Rema Sayge has made her mark as a well-respected partner in the live events and entertainment industry, with over 25 years of relationship building focusing on positivity, energy and talent. She is a highly experienced special event professional who has created unique cultural and entertainment experiences for a wide range of events on the world stage. Rema has collaborated with some of the most highly impactful organizations such as The National 9/11 Memorial & Museum, the Grammys, Annual NYC Marathon and New York Fashion Week. Rema has held leadership roles with many Film Festivals, including Tribeca, Dubai, Palm Springs, Hamptons, HBO Latino and South Asian Film Festivals to name just a few. She honed her skills working on set for major motion and independent films, in studio and on location as well as coordinating  for Emmy-Award winning documentaries as well Stage Managing for Off Broadway productions including the legendary Apollo Theatre and Edinburgh Fringe Festival.  Rema has been privileged to handle personal itineraries of VIPs and Royalty alike working with top leaders and the best in the business. She is an active member of the West Village and the downtown community. When she’s not in the ‘hood you can find her upstate hanging with the best dog in the world, Fonzie.

 

Connect With The Filmmakers:

Raised
$3,505
Goal
$5,000
Make a Contribution
It's tax deductible!

ACCOLADES

-
The Gotham Film & Media Institute - Fiscal Sponsorship Program 2022
-
Recipient of Jerome Foundation: Film, Video and Digital Production - Artist Grant

 

Help promote my fundraising campaign
Put our donation widget on your website

Get Widget Code

 

 

The Gotham Logo

 

© 2022 The Gotham. All Rights Reserved.
   Design by Andrew Martin

The Gotham Film & Media Institute is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to finding, developing and celebrating the people and projects that shape the future of story.

Learn more about us or become a member