Before I begin, I would like to thank you for your interest in BROTHER X. If you have found yourself on this page, than you are an individual that we trust and respect. Your support, resources, and time are incredibly meaningful to the team behind this production. 

What you will find below is a detailed plan for the execution of this film. This is a living document that has been crafted through hours of hard work and research. It is our hope that it gives you confidence in our abilities, thoroughness,  and dedication. 

Checkout our IndieGoGo Campaign video below: 

Director's Statement Producer's Statement The Story The Filmmakers The Locations The Look Production Timeline The Costs Fundraising Support Short Film
 

During my time at NYU, I have read countless short screenplays and produced several of them. Each of these films has had at least one strong component in them, ranging from interesting characters, to elaborate production design, to bold cinematography. BROTHER X is the first film I have had the pleasure of producing that is strong in almost every aspect. This film has the exceptional quality of being both highly ambitious in its style and completely honest in its writing.

I met Conner our Sophomore year in our sight & sound filmmaking class. Before Conner, I had never met a writer/director with such clarity in his writing and such boldness in his directing. Conner and I bonded over our admiration for the work of filmmakers such as Chris Cunningham and Nicolas Winding Refn. Now that we are collaborating on our most ambitious project yet, I have no doubt that the result will be remarkable. 

Below is one of the first films Conner and I worked on together: 

 Conner DeMita (left), Elliot Fletcher (right)

Conner DeMita (left), Elliot Fletcher (right)

I came back to Los Angeles for the first time after going to college and learned that I no longer had a sister. My sibling, who I had regarded as a sister his whole life, had adopted new pronouns and the name Elliot. Ever since we were kids, Elliot had been very particular about how he presented himself to everyone, including me. He always favored the masculine, and as we got into the years where our genders began to be more pronounced, this became increasingly hard for him. Elliot required more attention from our parents and the results of his experience manifested in intense anxiety or outbursts of emotion. I generally tried to keep myself separate, and this fed my own development as someone who kept their growing pains to themselves. While Elliot demanded help, in one way or another, I refused it. But at the same time I resented my sibling and anyone else who I perceived as presumptuous enough to ask for assistance.

When I returned from college, my tolerance was tested, and I failed. I refused to change the pronouns I used or the way I behaved around my sibling, because I felt a need to let Elliot know that the world would not change for him, and that, outside of our family, no one would go out of their way to make him comfortable. To put it simply, I was wrong. But I wasn’t wrong about my assertion that the harshness of real life would not adapt to Elliot, I was wrong in my understanding of Elliot’s identity. Elliot always knew who he was, and the person I perceived him to be for the majority of my life was not exactly him. That identity was an assumed name, it was who Elliot had to be while he was understanding himself and gaining the courage to share that with all of us. By changing the way I behaved around Elliot, I was not adapting to some alternate reality to conform to his preference; I was correcting the misconception that I held for so much of my life, which was no small task. Things about the way I think and make judgments became clear to me throughout this process, and this reflected onto every aspect of my life. A big part of the reason I found it so difficult to be understanding with my brother was that I struggled to understand and accept the dissonances in myself. This is what “Brother X” is about.

BROTHER X is an independent short film. It's the story of a young man in suburban Los Angeles who must learn how to cope with his sibling's gender transition. While he cannot bring himself to understand his new brother's experience, he himself spends his nights clubbing in Hollywood dressed as a woman.

When Julian's difficulties with his family over his brother's identity escalate, he escapes the situation in his favorite way: by going out for the night and pretending to be someone else. He spends the night traversing Los Angeles, dancing in nightclubs and conversing with his best friend and confidant. When it becomes clear that his conflicts at home are integral to the nature of his escapism, Julian is forced to violently confront his feelings and attempt to make sense of them. 

This semi autobiographic film explores the depths of scrutiny, self conflict, and harsh judgment. It focuses on identity and the experience of cognitive dissonance.

 
 
 

Writer/Director · Conner DeMita

Conner DeMita

Conner DeMita is a Los Angeles and New York based filmmaker entering his senior year at NYU's Tisch School for The Arts. During his time at NYU, Conner wrote and directed several music videos and experimental films. The script, which is very close to his personal experience, has offered him an opportunity to explore the reality of his life with the surrealism of experimental film.


Producer · Oliver Finley

Oliver Finley

Oliver Finley is a New York based filmmaker. Having honed his skills as a producer at New York University’s Tisch school for the arts, Oliver has worked on several junior and senior thesis films as well as television commercials and branded content for local businesses. He has developed a reputation for producing highly theatrical content on a scale unprecedented in micro budget filmmaking.


Producer · Aaron Daniel Jacob

Elliot Fletcher

Aaron Daniel Jacob is a producer and writer of narrative film, as well as a seasoned session singer and voice actor. A Los Angeles native, his voice credit appears on several Disney Channel shows, such as Phineas and Ferb, Sofia the First, and the upcoming Milo Murphy's Law. He's also lent vocal performances to live action feature films, including Cold in July (2014) and a handful of others in various stages of development and production.

He currently resides in Los Angeles, where he is in the process of developing several projects for feature film, short film, and other transmedia properties. He is an avid collaborator, with personal and professional ties on both coasts.

Aaron is passionate about the LGBTQ+ community, which drew him to work on this powerful piece with likeminded colleagues and friends. He couldn't be more excited to see it all the way through.


Liz Holland · Assistant Director

Liz Holland

Liz Holland is a Los Angeles native and filmmaker entering into her third year at Loyola Marymount University’s Film Production School. Along with the production degree, Liz is working towards a B.A. in English Literature and a minor in Cinema Studies. She has directed and written four short films at LMU, been the assistant director on three Graduate-level and four Undergraduate-level student films, as well as produced four short films. She is interested in avant-garde and surreal filmmaking and is passionate about helping directors achieve their full vision on screen and under-budget.


Cody Powers · Cinematographer

Elliot Fletcher

Cody Powers is a freelance cinematographer and photographer based in New York City. Cody seeks to use his eye for expression and detail to align the film's esthetic elements with its overall voice and message. Cody has worked as a director of photography in New York and Southern California on a variety of short films and commercials. He is excited to once again explore L.A.'s unique and capitvating landscape.


Production Designer · Letícia Bianco

Letícia Bianco

Originally from Sao Paulo, Brazil, Leticia moved to NY to pursue a BFA in Film & TV Production at Tisch School of the Arts. Her passion for production design is a result of her own storytelling background and interest in character development. Having worked on many student projects and 6 thesis films, Leticia’s art direction experience also expands into stop motion fabrication and special effects makeup.

Conner DeMita’s stylized and innovative vision as well as his complicated and idiosyncratic characters have long been the reason Leticia continues to work with him. She believes the richness of Brother X both in content and in visuals will be the culmination of all their previous collaborations.

 

Julian's Home

Conner DeMita and Elliot Fletcher's family home will serve as the home of Julian and Avery. The script was written specifically for this place, enhancing the film's semi-autobiographical nature. Using this house all means we will not pay a location fee and we are not restricted by availability. 

The Streets

Their are two scenes in the film that feature streets in Los Angeles. One is nearby Sanamluang, the Thai restaurant you see pictured below. The other will be a street with similar features to Hollywood Boulevard, also pictured below.  

Other Locations

There are three other primary locations featured in the film, the arcade, the nightclub, and the bar. We already have a few locations in mind and have begun the process of reaching out to them. A significant portion of our budget has been dedicated to the location fees we will incur by renting them. We have strategically scheduled the shoot to avoid the evening business hours for hospitality and entertainment venues. Our hope is that this will allow us to minimize these fees as much as possible. 

 

Concept Art

References

Development

Development for BROTHER X began in May of 2015. Since then, the script has gone through several revisions, Cody Powers, our director of photography, and Letícia Bianco, our Production Designer joined the team. An incredible amount of research and planning has gone into the financing plan and the potential logistics of bringing this ambitious film to life. 

Pre-production

With the launch of our Indiegogo campaign on May 24th, we will officially be in full pre-production. As we continue to acquire funding, we will be casting, securing locations and crew in Los Angeles. Our Indiegogo will conclude on July 1st and it will be time to bring the film to life. 

Once all of the roles are cast and a full crew is assembled, a shooting schedule will be locked in and with it our budget. Conner will begin rehearsing with the cast and technical scouts of our locations will allow for lighting and art direction plans to be assembled. Finally, equipment and transportation rentals will be booked, permits will be acquired, and props, set dressing, and wardrobe will be curated. This will be an extremely hectic time as what was once only on paper becomes a reality.  

Principle Photography

Principle photography will consist of six shooting days, beginning on July 12th and concluding on July 17th. 

Post-production

Post-production will begin immediately after wrap. A month will be dedicated to each phase of post production. The first phase will be picture editing. The second stage will including sound editing, additional recording, scoring, and mixing. The final phase will be color correction, graphic and title design, and mastering. By the end of the third phase, we will have a digital cinema package (DCP) ready for film festivals. 

Distribution: December 

Finally, the film will be ready for the world. After a few private test screenings for those who helped bring the film to life, we will begin submitting to film festivals. 

 

Fundraising Strategy

Attempting to fund a short film through donations alone is extremely challenging. That being said, we now live in an age where there are several tools available to non-profit arts to raise money. Crowdsourcing platforms like Kickstarter and IndieGoGo have done wonders for the independent film community, but with their convince comes the challenge over saturation in this space. In order for BROTHER X to standout, we need a carefully planned campaign.

visual content

The old cliché, "a picture is worth a thousand words" goes double for the web. Curating a large selection of media to convey the tone and aesthetic of the film is essential to gaining interest. Beginning nearly a year ago, we began photographing our potential locations, creating concept art, and designing a consistent design scheme across all of our content. All of this material will feed into our social media and fundraising platforms. 

the website

The first step in our fundraising campaign is to create a central location where those interested in the film can find all of the information about the film and reach out to us for questions. That location is the website you are looking at now. With Oliver's web design and front-end coding skills, we were able to develop an original website that stands out compared to most short films. The website also allows us to measure all of the activity on our social media and fundraising platforms. This data is crucial as we move through the campaign. 

Fractured Atlas

Fractured Atlas is a non-profit artist service organization that we have partnered with. Our partnership allows us to take advantage of their 501 (c) 3 tax status and accept tax deductible donations. This is a great incentive for any potential donor. We can also accept in-kind donations, meaning any good donated is tax deductible up to its market value. This is incredibly valuable as we search for props and look for catering for the production. Fractured Atlas also provides us great rates on insurance and allows donations made through IndieGoGo to also be tax deductible. In exchange for their services, Fractured Atlas takes 7% of all donations. 

Indiegogo

Our IndieGoGo campaign is our main fundraising event. We will attempt to raise $25,000 through this channel. This is no simple task. In order to reach our goal, we will need to have a dynamic steam of scheduled content, keeping our audience involved and growing. IndieGoGo's statistics show that "strangers on average, do not contribute until they see the campaign has reached the 30% funded mark." For this reason, it's very important to us that we break that 30% mark within the first week. (If you check our campaign now, you will see we are well on our way). 

Each week will continue to update our audience as preproduction develops. Every time we lock a new location or cast a new actor, that information will be made public so our followers feel a sense of involvement with the creation of the film.

OTHER DONATIONS

If you look at our budget, you will see that the current grand total is $29,020.50. Our IndieGoGo campaign, if we are successful will bring us close to $3,000 short of what we need to bring BROTHER X to life without serious compromise. This is where our other donations come in. 

 


Personal Donations

Please consider helping bring BROTHER X to life. To make a contribution, click on the link bellow.

Look out for our Indiegogo campaign launching May 24! 

Tax-Deductible Donations

BROTHER X is partnered with Fractured Atlas, a non-profit arts service organization. This program allows donors to receive a tax deduction on both monetary and in-kind donations. Tax-deductable donations can be made through Fractured Atlas' website. 6% of all donations will be contributed to Fractured Atlas. If you would like to make a tax-deductable donation, please click on the logo on the right. 

In-Kind Donations

Another way to support BROTHER X is through in-kind donations. The production of a short film requires several resources, from transportation and food, to props and equipment. Finding these items at a discount or for free goes a long way in helping reduce our costs. 

Donate now!
Donate now!

Below you will find our tentative shooting schedule. While it is subject to change depending on the availability of our locations, we believe this is our most ideal schedule. Because Conner's home will serve as Julian's home we have no restrictions with that location. This means it will be our cover set in the event we need to alter the schedule. On the fifth day we will transition into overnights with a later call the following day. The last two days are fully overnights. 

We start the week with equipment checkouts in the morning, and then a half day of shooting which will allow us to cover most of scene 1, the opening montage sequence. This half day allows us to have seven total shooting days without needing to have an eight day rental on our equipment. On Monday, July 18th a second unit team will handle returning equipment while the rest of the crew rests. 

We have scheduled our most expensive locations, the bar and nightclub, so we never interfere with their business hours. This will significantly decrease our location fees. 

Day One: Monday, July 11, 2016
5/8 pgs

Scene:

1

INT

Day

MONTAGE A - BLACK VOID SPACE

Julian appears before a black void.

1

Est. Time

1:00

5/8 pgs

Scene:

1

EXT

Day

MONTAGE B - RADIO TOWERS

Julian appears before radio towers in a field.

1

Est. Time

1:00

5/8 pgs

Scene:

1

EXT

Day

MONTAGE C - OCCULT RITUAL BAPTISM

Julian appears before an occult ritual baptism.

1

Est. Time

1:00

5/8 pgs

Scene:

1

EXT

Night

MONTAGE F - FIGHTING MEN

Julian appears before men fighting in an Alley.

1

Est. Time

1:00

Day Two: Tuesday, July 12, 2016
7/8 pgs

Scene:

3

EXT

Evening

ARCADE

Julian walks into an arcade. A couple argues outside the entrance.

1, 6, 7

Est. Time

1:00

2/8 pgs

Scene:

5

EXT

Evening

ARCADE

Julian walks out of the arcade, the couple is making out.

1, 6, 7

Est. Time

1:00

3/8 pgs

Scene:

4

INT

Evening

ARCADE

Julian walks out of the arcade, the couple is making out.

1, 10

Est. Time

4:00

1 5/8 pgs

Scene:

1

INT

Day

MONTAGE E - GLORIA

Julian appears before Gloria standinb by a window.

1, 4, 5

Est. Time

1:00

1 pgs

Scene:

1

INT

Night

GLORIA'S HOUSE

Gloria picks out female clothing for Julian.

1, 2

Est. Time

3:00

Day Three: Wednesday, July 13, 2016
1 5/8 pgs

Scene:

2

INT

Day

KITCHEN

Julian argues with his mother about Avery.

1, 4, 5

Est. Time

6:00

2/8 pgs

Scene:

6

INT

Evening

JULIAN'S HOUSE

Julian walks into the house, his parents try to talk to them but he ignores them.

1, 5, 14

Est. Time

2:00

3/8 pgs

Scene:

7

INT

Evening

HALLWAY

Julian walks past Avery's bedroom and sees him surrounded by screens.

1, 5, 14

Est. Time

2:00

5/8 pgs

Scene:

1

INT

Night

MONTAGE D - SCREENS

Julian walks past Avery's bedroom and sees him surrounded by screens.

1

Est. Time

1:00

Day Four: Thursday, July 14, 2016
5/8 pgs

Scene:

11

INT

Night

NIGHT CLUB ONE

Julian and Gloria dance and talk at night club 1.

1

Est. Time

5:00

5/8 pgs

Scene:

13

INT

Night

NIGHT CLUB TWO

Julian and Gloria dance at a nightclub. Julian notices 4 men that stare at him.

1, 2, 12, 13, 15, 16

Est. Time

5:00

Day Five: Friday, July 15, 2016
3/8 pgs

Scene:

15

INT

Night

BAR

Julian and Gloria get a drink at a bar.

1, 2, 3, 8

Est. Time

3:00

3/8 pgs

Scene:

16

INT

Night

BAR

Julian and Gloria leave as the bartener closes up.

1, 2, 3, 8

Est. Time

3:00

1 4/8 pgs

Scene:

17

EXT

Night

BAR FRONT

Julian and Gloria leave as the bartener closes up.

1, 2, 3

Est. Time

5:00

Day Six: Saturday, July 16, 2016
1 6/8 pgs

Scene:

12

EXT

Night

THAI RESTARAUNT

Julian and Gloria eat thai food while he describes a dream.

1, 2

Est. Time

4:00

1 1/8 pgs

Scene:

14

EXT

Night

HOLLYWOOD BOULEVARD

Julian and Gloria walk down Hollywood Boulevard and go to a bar.

1, 2

Est. Time

4:00

Day Seven: Sunday, July 17, 2016
3/8 pgs

Scene:

8

INT

Night

BEDROOM

Julian grabs his backpack and sneaks out the window.

1

Est. Time

1:00

2/8 pgs

Scene:

9

EXT

Night

HOUSE SIDEALLEY

Julian hops out of his window and walks down the alley.

1

Est. Time

1:00

2/8 pgs

Scene:

18

EXT

Night

OUTSIDE NEIGHBORING HOUSE

Julian gets out of Gloria's car and washes off his face with a hose.

1, 2

Est. Time

3:00

2/8 pgs

Scene:

19

INT

Night

BEDROOM

Julian climbs into his bedroom through the window.

1

Est. Time

1:00

2/8 pgs

Scene:

20

INT

Night

HALLWAY

Julian walks by Avery's bedroom and almost opens the door.

1

Est. Time

1:00

2/8 pgs

Scene:

20

INT

Night

HALLWAY

Julian walks by Avery's bedroom and almost opens the door.

1

Est. Time

1:00

1 1/8 pgs

Scene:

21

INT

Night

KITCHEN

Julian and Avery discusss names.

1, 4

Est. Time

4:00

Bringing a film from concept to screen is always a costly endeavor, even when most of the cast and crew is working for free. Our greatest costs are Camera, G&E, Sound and location fees. The locations featured in the film will help our portrayal of Los Angeles feel authentic and unique. More than half of the film is comprised of night exteriors and using proper lighting equipment is crucial. We will also be hiring a professional steadicam operator for four of our seven shootings days.

Our hope is to reduce this figure even further through in-kind donations. 

Budget Topsheet

Description Total
Story and Script 0.00
Producer 0.00
Director 0.00
Cast 0.00
Total Above-The-Line 0.00
   
Background Talent 0.00
Production Staff 0.00
Camera 7,100.00
Grip & Electric 3,375.00
Sound 750.00
Art Department 850.00
Wardrobe 350.00
Makeup & Hair 350.00
Animals & Picture Vehicles 0.00
Stunts & Special Effects 0.00
Locations 4,800
Transportation 2,800
Food & Hospitality 2,500
Media Stock & Lab 350.00
Total Production 26,050.00
   
Editorial 0.00
Music 700.00
Sound Post 0.00
Graphics, Animation, Effects 0.00
Post Production Lab 500.00
Total Post Production 1,200
   
Other Costs 1,350.00
Total Bellow The Line 25,155.00
Total Above and Below The Line 25,155.00
Contingency 10% 2,515.00
   
Grand Total 29,020.50

To see our complete line-by-line budget, please click here

 

Social Awareness

One of the most admirable characteristics about short films is that they are nonprofit ventures. This provides an outlet for filmmakers to disregard market trends and to tell a story purely from passion. BROTHER X has the opportunity to spread awareness about the struggles surrounding transgender people. It is our hope that BROTHER X will shed light on what many consider to be the least understood part of the LGBTQ+ community. This film shows us that the search for identity is universal. 

Art and Culture

By supporting short film, you are directly supporting art and culture. Short films are not made with money, but through donations and kindness. With your donation you are supporting a piece of art that will travel the world through the film festival circuit. 

Future Filmmakers

When it comes to establishing a career in the film and television industry, there are only two things that matter: who you know and what you have done. As young filmmakers, we have very few resources to get us started. Short films are one of the best ways for us to show off our abilities and gain recognition by industry professionals. By investing in short films, you are investing in the future careers of everyone involved.