Yesterday, I had the great blessing of interviewing another fabulous filmmaker with a purpose, the amazing Carlotta Summers. She has a new project called Butterflies coming out; and, she recently completed a successful Seed and Spark campaign for that project.
Carlotta Summers is an actor, writer, and filmmaker currently based in NYC. A graduate of NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, she holds a degree in theatre with a minor in psychology. She loves using a multitude of elements from her training to create complex characters grounded in realism. She started her acting career performing in a Text Alive performance of Titus Andronicus at Shakespeare Theatre Co., when she was 16. She went on to perform for the Strawberry One Act Festival’s Just Off the Pike and most recently finished a production of Coriolanus, From Man to Dragon. In her spare time she helps with fight choreography, most recently had the honor of working behind the scenes with Evan Cabnet on the Broadway production Therese Raquin.
Carlotta’s passion for film stems from the idea that the power of cinema can change perception, and with this provoke action. She is the President and CEO of Wild Cat Film, LLC. Her hub for all things Carlotta can be found at www.carlotta-summers.com
JON MEYERS INTERVIEWS CARLOTTA SUMMERS
JON: Hi, Carlotta. Let’s jump right in to this. We all have our causes, for instance, mine are invisible disabilities and gender equality (particularly when it comes to women in Hollywood) — How did bullying become a subject you wanted to address now?
CARLOTTA: I have a lot of issues that I am passionate about so it’s hard to pick just one! A few years ago I found that I wasn’t getting too much work in the indie film scene and the roles I was given, were not the ones I ultimately wanted to pursue in my career. So, I decided to start creating my own work. I have always been a writer and freelance filmmaker. At NYU, I focused on crafting theater pieces with my studio, The Experimental Theater Wing. I asked myself, what would I like to tackle first?
Bullying has always been a personal subject for me. I am a biracial woman who was teased consistently throughout grade school for being different. I remember the shooting pain in my stomach every time I went to class and had to face my bullies. I remember how I felt when being berated in gym class. I think it’s sad when young girls find it necessary to push down other young women, when we are all in the same boat; when we are all struggling to swim to the top. I wanted to create a film that showed, not only some of the things I went through, but the psychology behind bullying so that we can start positive conversations on what we can do to help the victims and solve the issue. I wanted to share what I did to overcome the obstacles that stood in my way, in hopes that some girl will see it and feel empowered.
JON: I love that. I’ve had some similar experiences, even as an adult, believe it or not. I’ve discovered that the only way to move forward is to surround myself with positive people and have positive conversations. Speaking of positive conversations, you just hit your goal on Seed & Spark. Tell me a little about that, and how you move forward now.
CARLOTTA: We are so lucky to have reached our goal! For those who still want to be apart of the journey, feel free to follow us on instagram, twitter and facebook.com! We will be posting updates on these platforms, consistently as we move forward with production!
If anyone wants to contribute separately to the film, but did not have a chance to do so during the campaign, feel free to email us for how to do so. The short film is a part of a larger feature of the same name. [ Editor’s Note: Here is that email: firstname.lastname@example.org ]
JON: Very good. So Butterflies The Feature is next after Butterflied The Short. What’s next then after the Butterflies? What does the next 4 or 5 years look like for Carlotta Summers? Anything you specifically would like me to mention?
CARLOTTA: This is just the beginning. I have secretly — now not so secretly) — been working on another piece, just as long, if not a bit longer then Butterflies. But, I am going to keep that quiet for now.
JON: Too late
CARLOTTA: I also have a few short films in the works as well. All will be created through my production company Wild Cat Film and in collaboration with other producers and creatives. If you would like to keep up with what new provocative stories we have in store, as well as casting opportunities, follow or like the Facebook page at WildCatFilm.
JON: I’ll put a hotlink to the page in that last sentence. I know we are both crazy busy this week, so I’ll let you get back to your day. Again, Carlotta, congratulations on hitting your goal for Butterflies on Seed & Spark. I’ll be posting this on the blog before Wednesday.
CARLOTTA: Thanks again, looking forward to it!
SUPPLEMENTAL LINKS PERTAINING TO THIS STORY
Featured Photo (at top) Credit: A.J. Wilhelm (http://www.ajwilhelm.com/)