After a great loss, Krystal Parker is thrust into a new life she didn’t know she wanted.
Interview with Writers/Producers Ryan & Jennica Schwartzman and Director Marc Hampson
Main photo: Amy Argyle and Jennica Schwartzman
Congratulations! Why did you make your film?
Filmmaker statement (Purpose Pictures):
“Parker’s Anchor” is our 2nd feature to take from conception to distribution as a writing/producing team. We wrote “Parker’s Anchor” because life changes - over and over. Inspired by a miraculous event close to our family we wanted to explore how Family doesn’t always mean what people think it does. We decided to explore the messy reality of infertility and divorce among other things and have been moved by how many people with which the story resonates.
-Ryan and Jennica Schwartzman, Producers/Writers/Actors/Parents/Married Couple/People
Imagine I’m a member of the audience. Why should I watch this film?
This film aims to support, encourage, and inspire people to be open, keep changing and, exploring second, third, and even sixth chapters in life. Letting go of life’s plans and seeing where your ambition and bravery will take you will teach you that life can be better lived out of your comfort zone.
How do personal and universal themes work in your film?
We wanted to expose the truth of how life doesn’t follow a plan - and how letting go and being open to new possibilities can actually bring you to places that you may feel you were always destined to be. In hindsight, we can see how all the pieces were put in your path to make up a rich & adventurous life. We just need to shed our old ideas of life and learn to keep opening up, even when it is difficult.
How have the script and film evolved over the course of their development and production?
I was involved with Parker’s Anchor as a friend, a peer and a colleague long before I was approached to be involved in the project directly. Back when it had a different name - some of the characters did different things and all the early ways that scripts seem so foreign on reflection at such a distance. I gave thoughts and started arguments. Some were heard and some were brushed off as I was merely a tourist spending a day in someone else’s world I had not yet lived in.
And then one day I was asked to direct. Though I had an existing relationship both personal and working, this was a bit of a surprise. My sister, who co-wrote and would be starring in the film had decided that while we had talked openly about other filmmakers working on the project - when it came down to it - she knew she trusted me paint the picture the way she hoped it would come together. She knew she wanted me walking her through some of the hard moments Krystal Parker was going to embark on. I am grateful for that opportunity.
Trust is powerful and necessary thing in a working relationship. It’s empowering and is shown through love, respect and listening to the needs of the other. It’s remembering the “relationship” part of the term. I put all of my trust in the team of artists I’m lucky enough to be surrounded by on set and in post every day.
When efforts to build on the story took the film in the wrong direction, we worked to correct it. When one emotional beat engulfed an entire act of the film, we asked questions and found our way back. And two days before our final film delivery an important moment kept changing, but we found the answer that was hiding there since it’s inception - we just had to look hard enough and ask the right questions. We had to stay true Krystal’s journey and trust the process.
We hope that Parker’s Anchor is embraced by audiences. But to be honest - it’s really only important to me that my sister likes it.
-Marc Hampson, Director
What type of feedback have you received so far?
After a private red-carpet preview screening for cast & crew, our producing team received rave reviews and have put together an ambitious release plan. We were overwhelmed at our after-party with stories of how people were deeply moved by the universal truths that spoke to them. This film is uniquely female and yet encompasses struggles that we all face and need to overcome.
What are you looking to achieve by having your film more visible on www.wearemovingstories.com?
Hoping to spread the film's message and insight interest from industry professionals.
Who do you need to come on board (producers, sales agents, buyers, distributors, film festival directors, journalists) to amplify this film’s message?
We need support from buyers, distributors, film festival directors, & journalists to get the word out about the film
What type of impact and/or reception would you like this film to have?
We'd like to see people inspired to open up their lives to new possibilities! We hope to reach a wide audience through grassroots campaigning and a wide digital release following a limited theatrical run in a few key cities.
What’s a key question that will help spark a debate or begin a conversation about this film?
Loss is not the end of the story. In what ways have you overcome set backs that have changed your plan for your life? How have you overcome loss, pain, anger, and all the struggles that aim to keep you bound in mourning? What wonderful gifts did life have for you once you changed your perspective and got back out there with a new plan??
Would you like to add anything else?
Yes, here are our lead creatives' bios-
Marc Hampson, Director
Marc Hampson is an award-winning filmmaker with a deep background rooted in music and the visual arts. He attended NYFA in Universal City in 2002 and later earned a degree in Animation and Multimedia from Brooks College. His first loves were comic books and animation. His early focus of study was color, composition, staging and storytelling and when he discovered his love for film, these became important tools in his work. A long-time musician, Marc grew up playing in bands and sitting in on jams in church and at clubs and coffee shops. He was always a writer. Now he’s a Composer. An Editor. A Director.
Along the way, he has worked as a Character Animator, Illustrator, Storyboard Artist, Colorist, Art Director, Tattooist, Matte Painter, VFX Artist and these opportunities help to inform his experience as a filmmaker. He lives in Orange County, CA with his wife and two boys.
Filmmaker Jennica Schwartzman, Producer/Writer
Jennica Schwartzman, a member of The Producer’s Guild of America, is an actress/writer/producer that loves tackling a project from idea to distribution. She works alongside her husband and business partner, Ryan Schwartzman, also known for his legendary movie-night cuddles.
Jennica has been published in the Producer’s Guild Magazine “Produced By," she is a guest writer on the acclaimed entertainment industry websites MsInTheBiz.com, FilmmakingStuff.com, & WomenandHollywood.com. She has been invited to speak on film festival panels, and is a teacher & workshop speaker for The International Family Film Festival's Road Scholars intergenerational filmmaking camp. Some of Jennica’s most memorable articles are shared yearly in the indie filmmaking community: “Film Festival Series Part 3: How to Kill it in your QnA,” “How to Break it to your Parents that you’re an Indie-Work-At-Home-Parent-Filmmaker,” & “Why Can’t I Work on your Film for Free?”
The Schwartzmans work on passion projects in their small office in Hollywood. They have collected TOP awards from Big Bear Lake Int’l Film Fest, Eureka Springs Indie Fest, Film Fest Twain Harte, Worldfest Houston, Fayetteville Film Festival, The Int’l Family Film Fest, & the highest honor from The Dove Foundation. Ryan & Jennica have a toddler, who doesn’t quite understand what they do but seems very supportive. Their next ‘bundle of joy’ is expected in April of 2017.
Filmmaker Ryan Schwartzman, Producer/Writer
Ryan Schwartzman is an actor/writer/producer, but before any of that he was a Southern Gentleman and being true to who he is, he has asked to speak for himself. So, Ryan, take it away…
Thank you “third person” Ryan, as always it was a pleasure to be introduced by you. I love making movies. Getting to act is a wonderful joy that I am grateful to have the opportunity to do. However, there is so much more to filmmaking and I enjoy being a part of the entire process. As a writer/producer I am able to create a world, characters, and tell a story on the page and then be able to bring together a diverse group of talented people to bring this world to life. It never ceases to amaze me to see the talents of everyone from the Background actors to the Director to the Production Designer to the interns all coming together and sharing their creativity.
I am very fortunate to have found a partner in life and in my art who has a similar vision and whom I enjoy spending absurd amounts of time with. My wife, Jennica Schwartzman (crazy how we have the same last name, right?), and I work together from conception of the idea all the way through to the final distribution decisions. Though some of the process can be a bit tedious we continue to find the joy in each and every step.
What are the key creatives developing or working on now?
Our presenting production company and associated production companies all have features in various stages of development and in several different genres.
Purpose Pictures (presents)
Filmmaker couple Ryan and Jennica Schwartzman focus on work that inspires and moves their film journey forward. Either creating flagship projects like GORDON FAMILY TREE and PARKER’S ANCHOR or working on close friends’ passion projects like BEFORE THE LIGHTS COME UP and THE MAN IN THE TRUNK - Ryan and Jennica do everything they can to make DIY filmmaking and artist collaboration successful.
The couple make a conscious effort in every one of their films to balance the gender scales in front of and behind the camera, cast the screen to reflect the real world in every color and identity, and hire intern positions from local film programs to create an educationally based set. They see filmmaking as an on-set culture that is bigger than just one project. Each film they foster goes beyond the individual movie and helps grow a filmmaking community that is safe, diverse, supportive of family rearing culture, and reflects the world in which we all want to work- and live.
Brotherhood Pictures (in association)
Brotherhood Pictures is the collaboration of four friends and artists dedicated to working in tandem to create original feature length motion pictures that speak to our emotional experiences. We are brought together by our love for film and a willingness to do what it takes to push forward in creating art.
Meandering Way Films (in association)
Elizabeth Barnes and Brandon Keener formed Meandering Way Films in 2016, with a mission to find and tell stories with complex female characters, stories with faith and social justice themes - and stories that make us laugh. Projects include the award-winning short SHELTER starring Clea DuVall & April Grace, now being developed as a feature, and the in-development female-driven comedy COMMUNITY ACCESS.
Interview: April 2017
We Are Moving Stories embraces new voices in drama, documentary, animation, TV, web series and music video. If you have just made a film - we'd love to hear from you. Or if you know a filmmaker - can you recommend us? More info: Carmela
After a great loss, Krystal Parker is thrust into a new life she didn’t know she wanted.
Director: Marc Hampson
Producer: Jennica Schwartzman p.g.a., Ryan Schwartzman p.g.a., Aaron Fairley p.g.a., Elizabeth Barnes
Co-producers: Deborah Smith & Mark Landon Smith.
Writer: Ryan & Jennica Schwartzman
Key cast: Jennica Schwartzman, Amy Argyle, Christopher Marquette, Penny Johnson Jerald, Ryan Schwartzman, Michael Beach, Brandon Keener, Sarah Colonna, Deborah Smith, Peter Weidman, & Claire Donald
Looking for (bold) (producers, sales agents, buyers, distributors, film festival directors, journalists):
buyers/distributors/film festival directors/journalists
Made in association with: Purpose Pictures presents, in association with Brotherhood Pictures, in association with Meandering Way
Where can I see it in the next month? World Premiere - Bentonville Film Fest (May 2-7) Show/Ticketing Info – May 4, 2017 5:45 pm, future festivals TBA