Thursday, August 11, 2011

Prayer:Peace in my personal life;growth in my professional life.

Where to begin?
In the past two months, lots happening, so let me get to it.
Update on "Unspoken Words": We shot more scenes, several of them, just two Saturdays ago, including some newly-written scenes designed, most likely, to expand Ms. Robin Givens' small-but-now-crucial-role as the social worker, Ms. Lewis. The added scenes gave me more lines as well, and of course, I was thrilled to meet and get to work with Robin, and found her to be kind and professional. She was great at improvising lines and working with both the award-winning director, Henderson Maddox, and I, in deciding how our fight(Ms. Lewis confronting Benetha Evans(me)) would play out. Big hugs to Troy Farouk, the stellar fight choreographer (and weapons-specialist:I use a Mossberg 590 shotgun in another part of the film) who made sure Robin and I played "safely".
I'm verrrry excited about the film's PREMIERE, here in Atlanta.It is scheduled for 11-11-11, and I would like to invite you all, to come see it.I cannot, of course, provide tickets, but tickets will not be expensive, and that evening, there will be several showings of "Unspoken Words".
I do want to warn everyone, the role I have is that of a violent foster-mother, and the film itself has several edge-y scenes.Because of the intensity of several scenes, I don't think I'd recommend it for children under 13.That said, the story will be appealing to teens, and if I were given ten seconds to describe it, it would be as follows:
Sixteen-year-old Dante' escapes from an abusive foster-mother, and heads to Atlanta to ostensibly find fame and fortune in rap music, but instead discovers poetry and spoken word, and a sense of family, and faith.
That's not an official "blurb" for the film, just my own short synopsis of the (original) script.
It was a great experience, discovering the medium of film, all over again. I once said "Gee, the process IS the process", when discussing film with stage actors.What I mean is, in theatre, you study, memorize, and create the biography/inner narrative to build your character, and then, in rehearsal, you hone your character (using the magic "if", as in, "If I were this chartacter, in this situation, what would I do?")until she feels "valid". You physicalize her needs, by asking, "What does she want, need, hope for, dream of?" Then you hope each night, to reproduce what you learned, as if it's happening, for the first time. In film, you do all those things, exactly as you do for the theatre, except that those discoveries are made, while you are filming.The process itself, creates the process.Of course, onstage, you get only one chance, each night, to get it, to make it your own. In film, you may get several "chances" (takes) but you cannot truthfully "own" the result: I think that is up to the director, editor, cinematographer, and sound-mixers. I trust director Henderson Maddox, as he embraced every suggestion I made. When I suggested graphic, he said yes, and yet, he reigned me in, with what I'd deem "tender". When I wanted gentle interaction, he'd ask me to fight. We balanced each other, in terms of "action".

I also worked on Atlanta filmmaker, Reggie Price's "Just Us", the short-film I'll be given a copy of, soon, which means I will now have a variety of pieces to weave into my professional acting "reel" for my agent. In "Just Us", I play Ruth Eleanor Caldwell, a mother who becomes addicted to heroin, and abandons her children. The three girls must survive on their own. My pivotal scenes are those of scoring heroin with my dealer, and the scene in which I die in my eldest daughter's arms.

Since the terrible automobile accident of May 23rd, my Mother-in-Law, "Omma K." is healing up well, and has been through some really rough trials,including multiple surgeries, first for her spine, and then for her broken right shoulder and arm. "Appa K", my Father-in-Law is doing well, but of course has concerns for his wife.
We are grateful for little Morgan Catherine Kwon, daughter of Toni Harris Kwon, and Arthur Kwon(my hubby's bro);she is about to be one-year-old, on September 21st. You may recall, if you follow this blog, that we lost Toni last year, on October 14th. She died suddenly and unexpectedly, shortly(about three weeks) after giving birth to Morgan Catherine.She died from Stage 4 gastrointestinal cancer, of unknown origin.
Please do keep us in your thoughts, and yes, prayers.
May G-d Bless You All.
I am studying Judaism currently, hence my abbreviation for G-d.
Peace, kids.


Harnett-Hargrove said...

Hello Lisa,
Popping in to check up.

We are all excited to see the film, and of course, the kids want to see it no matter what its rated.... xo

amy said...

Also wanted to get caught up on what you're doing..sounds exciting, Lisa!!

Lisa Allender said...

Cuz Jayne-- very inappropriate moments in film, which I cannot reveal. But of course I'd be so excited for you to come see the film! :D

Lisa Allender said...

Amy waiting to hear from Seth at RDP about our Sept11th event. Lisa's Second Sundays Featured Author and Open Mic. If it is a "go", I still want to feature YOU--Amy as my first Feature. It will be a big 9/11 anniversary, so it may have a somber feel that day.
Miss you lots, Amy. :(

Don't Feed The Pixies said...

good luck with the film - sadly its a bit far for me to come, but maybe one day i'll see you in action

David Herrle said...

SO awesome about UNSPOKEN WORDS and JUST US. Impressive and cool.

I wish I lived in or near Atlanta for the WORDS premiere.

I pray for the best for Omma and Appa. A moment of silence for your Toni friend... :(

Lisa Allender said...

Pixies--I don't expect you to come"across the pond" to see my fim, but perhaps you'll catch "Unspoken Words" next year, when it may be playing in the UK. :D
Fair Warning: I look so scary, that when my hubby saw the pblicity stills, he did NOT recognize me!!!
David Herrle--Why thank you, sir.So kind of you.Prayers appreciated, and yes, you may see "Unspoken Words" playing in your area, sometime next year. :D