Filming is underway for “The White Bag,” the 19th annual Grand Valley State University Summer Film Project. The short film is written and directed by Chicago filmmaker Marie Ullrich, assistant professor in the School of Communications at Grand Valley State University.
The 16-minute comedy centers on old woman who loses her temper with ‘’kids today’’ and becomes a local hero in her one-woman crusade for politeness. The lead role of Pearl Baskin is played by local actor Victoria Mullen. The supporting role of Sam Puck is played by Chicago actor Ashley Black.
“I enjoy making films about strong female protagonists,” said Ullrich, “especially characters whose predicament and resolution have nothing to do with romance.”
The Summer Film Project was established to offer junior and senior students an opportunity to work side-by-side with professionals to produce a short film. More than 20 students are enrolled in the six-week practicum course that will shoot the film in late July and early August. Post-production is done during a 15-week fall course, with a premiere screening in the spring.
Director Ullrich, whose short film “Faster!” has screened internationally at juried film festivals, has assembled a team of professionals to work with the students, including Producer Liz Merriman, from West Michigan; Director of Photography Tony Santiago (DP on “Faster!” and manager of Columbia College Chicago’s Media Production Center; and Sound Department Head Joseph McCargar, Grand Valley affiliate professor in the School of Communications.
“This is my third film working with Marie, but my first film with Grand Valley,” said Santiago. “I’m very impressed with the professionalism of the students. They’re very sharp.”
Summer Film Project 2013 Crew
Unit Production Manager: Brian Gotberg
Line Producer: Alicia Kitson
1st Assistant Director: Jeff Butler
2nd Assistant Director: Jessie Routhier
Script Supervisor: Mitchell Scheiber
Camera Operator: Dylan Sugg
1st Assistant Camera: Shae Spencer
2nd Assistant Camera: Tim Schepers
Art Director: Zach Johnson
Props master: Beth Parks
Art Department Assistant: Andrew Ackerman
Wardrobe / Hair / Make Up: Alyssa Pecoraro
Gaffer: Ian McNabb
Key Grip: Isiah Otten
Grip & Electric: Max Dekorne, Scott Saunders, Jon Rabideau
Digital Imaging Technician : Garrett Black
Sound Crew: Tzu Xiang Chen, Colin DeMarco