Blog Archives

Dark Angels Trailer

Last year Atlantic Star Productions produced the 20 minute short film (musical drama)  ‘Dark Angels‘. Produced by Ebony Butler and Directed by David Raynor, this fantasy-thriller style musical drama also features the producer, Ebony Butler, and Australian actress Kate Neilson in the lead roles.

Check out the trailer below:

Dark Angels – Trailer from David Raynor and Ebony Butler on Vimeo.

DARK ANGELS is an edgy contemporary pop / musical drama.

Led by the enigmatic and charismatic ‘KEY’, the Dark Angels are a gang of young all-female vigilante spirits who terrorise men guilty of crimes against women: wife-beaters, sexual abusers, rapists and pedophiles.

Accompanied by music the Dark Angels execute well-choreographed dance routines as they capture and strip their victims before KEY, their, leader sits in judgement and administers punishment. The DARK ANGELS gain notoriety by tipping off a TV journalist who records the ritual humiliation for broadcast. They become a ratings sensation.

Now a social and public phenomenon, the Dark Angels are loved and loathed in equal measure: loathed by the authorities, who have failed to catch them and loved by a large following of female fans who feel the Dark Angels offer some hope of justice and healing for the abuse they have suffered at the hands of men.

When the authorities put up a reward for the gang’s capture a young, rising-star criminologist hatches a plan to infiltrate the cult. She is thrown together with her former lover, an arrogant detective; in a sting operation the authorities hope will crush the Dark Angels forever.

The Dark Angels, however, are on to the authorities’ plan and turn the tables on the criminologist and the detective in spectacular fashion.

Advertisements

The Border

The Border from Ebony Butler on Vimeo.

This film is a video montage from my time on the border of Thailand and Cambodia. Filmed in Poipet, the video attempts to express what life is like for the innocent children forced into slavery and child labour and also those dying from AIDS, which is an ever-growing problem in the region.

Child labour, sexual exploitation, human slavery, child trafficking, disease, poverty and famine is rampant and destroying thousands of lives everyday, damaging the social fabric of society.  The children and women are the ones who suffer the most and much aid and international action is needed to help this troubled nation.

Our community projects, both local and global, involve activities that promote social change, for the betterment of society and for the protection of our planet. We recycle, restore and deliver bicycles to the most marginalized and isolated groups affected directly by war, poverty or disease. Furthermore, we use the power of media to raise awareness of the most important, under reported and time critical issues. We aim to create a more positive attitude toward caring for people in need, regardless of race or religion, promote action within the community and strive to bring about social change.

www.bikes4life.com.au
www.childtroopers.com
www.atlanticstarproductions.com

Forest Whitaker’s Latest Projects

Forest Whitaker on Better Angels: “The movie asks, When is the right time to step in?… The journalist gets captured by the Lord’s Resistance Army and is taken to a camp where he finds their leader, Joseph Kony, who hasn’t been seen for years.”

Forest Whitaker Reveals Plot Specifics For “The Butler” + Talks Kony Project & More…

Forest Whitaker

Was reading this Vanity Fair profile of Forest Whitaker and picked up some items worth repeating here on S&A; specifically about projects Whitaker is attached to star in/direct.

First, The Butler – Lee Daniels’ drama based on Eugene Allen, an African American who worked as a butler in the White House for over 34 years, serving 8 presidents from 1952 to 1986.

All we’ve really known about the project is what I wrote in the last sentence, and many of you have expressed your disatisfaction with seeing another film about a black person in a “service” position.

By the way, it’s inspired by a 2008 Washington Post article by Wil Haygood titled A Butler Well Served by This Election (read it HERE); it pretty much summarizes Mr Allen’s many years of service in the White House, leading up to President Obama’s election.

In the Vanity Fair piece, here’s what I think is a crucial bit of info on the project that I haven’t seen reported anywhere until now; Whitaker states:

“It’s a movie about the issue of how you protest… My son [to be played by David Oyelowo] is an activist who is repeatedly arrested. My character is a conformist, but in his own way, he influences presidents. Eugene becomes more active, particularly at the end of his life, when he makes a decision to fight.”

Read the rest of this entry

Bikes 4 Life Uganda Video

Bikes 4 Life Promo Uganda 2012 from Ebony Butler on Vimeo.

A short promotional and thank you video for the successful 2012 Bikes 4 Life Uganda Project.

Featuring the honorable Dr. Olara Otunnu, UPC President and former U.N Under Secretary General for the Office of Children and Armed Conflict.

Copyright: Atlantic Star Productions 2012.

See: www.bikes4life.com.au and www.facebook.com/bikes4lifeorg

A Creative Spin on Little Red Riding Hood

A gorgeous retelling of Little Red Riding Hood,

using silhouettes and plenty of horror

This is Red, a phenomenally atmospheric take on Little Red Riding Hood from directors Jorge Jaramillo and Carlo Guillotand composer Manuel Borda. In this five-minute animation — which seeks to “explore more thoroughly the drama, horror and realism of the story” — we learn how the fairy tale‘s protagonist earned her namesake. Hats off to the creative team.

[Via Cartoon Brew]

Africa Part 2

Late next month we will be returning to Africa to complete filming for our documentary, Child Troopers, which has been three years in the making.

We will be spending most time in Uganda again, however are trying to get access into the DRC or South Sudan. It’s not going to be easy but we feel it is important to get closer to the war and current rebel activity.

Thanks to an amazing supporter and dear friend who is helping out financially, Sanne Kurz, an award winning cinematographer from Berlin, will be joining our team and shooting for us in East and Central Africa.

Wish us luck… Hopefully all goes well and we’ll be back in Australia or the US for post production around April/May!

BioPic’s Aboard ‘Child Soldier’ Story – Variety

BioPic’s aboard ‘Soldier’ story – Entertainment News, Film News, Media – Variety.

 

Will Raee to direct Uma Thurman starrer

BioPic Entertainment has joined forces with Caspian Pictures to co-produce indie drama “Girl Soldier,” with Uma Thurman to star and Will Raee to direct.

The film will depict the true-life plight of 30 Ugandan girls who were abducted by rebel soldiers. Project’s been in development since 2009, when Caspian announced it had attached Thurman to the project (Variety, July 21, 2009).

Story’s based on Kathy Cook’s book “Stolen Angels,” which follows the 1996 raid at a boarding school in which armed rebels abducted young girls to turn them into soldiers and sex slaves. A teacher tracked the rebels back to their camp to demand the girls’ release; 110 were returned to the nun, who then began a crusade over the next few years as she rallied parents, the government, the U.N. and the pope to aid in rescuing not only her girls but other children in rebel captivity.

Producers are aiming to begin shooting in March in South Africa.

BioPic Entertainment, founded by Michael Hennessy, Brian A. Bullock and Robert G. Edner, is focused on TV and film based on iconic personalities and historic events. BioPic also recently announced the development of Wendy Randall’s “Mahjong Wives,” a series set in the 1960s about the five Jewish mob wives who covertly ran Las Vegas through their husbands, as well as “Black Rangers.” Latter is the untold story of the U.S. Army’s only all-black company of elite Airborne Rangers who helped turn the tide of the Korean War.

US Producer Takes on ‘Child Troopers’

Child Troopers and Atlantic Star Productions are excited to announce producer Alec Pedersen to the team.

Director of Child Troopers, Ebony Butler, will be traveling to Los Angeles next week where she will work with Child Trooper’s U.S Producer, Alec Pedersen (The Cove; Unity). She will then head across to New York and Washington DC to conduct interviews and further research issues related to the film.

Research for the upcoming trip to America will focus on children in conflict & child soldiers, peace & justice, civilian protection & security, aid & development, modern day child slavery & child trafficking.

More information regarding Child Troopers will be released soon so keep checking in for updates! See: http://www.childtroopers.wordpress.com

If there is something you would like to know, or an opinion you would like to voice, please do as we encourage dialogue and promote discussion on all issues!

Follow Child Troopers on Facebook.com/childtrooopers or check out the blog atlanticstarproductions.blogspot.comfor information on human trafficking, slavery, human rights, child soldiers and much more!

Read the rest of this entry

Business Fights Poverty

The power to fight poverty from Business Fights Poverty on Vimeo.

http://www.businessfightspoverty.org

Music and Film, Two Powerful Mediums – Combined, What Can They Achieve?

Salvador (BA) - O Cantor Stevie Wonder fala na...

Stevie Wonder - Image from Wikipedia

Music and Film. They can achieve almost anything. They can bring about world-wide unity, create harmony, promote cross culture and cross border compassion, understanding, peace and care! They can both ignite social action, they can mobilize people all over the world with love, insight and empathy… and every other ingredient necessary for a better world… ‘for you and for me and the entire human race’. (R.I.P Michael Jackson)

I truly believe that the power of music can create positive social change throughout the world. Music being the universal language means that it is one thing that we are all bound together by…. People unite when it comes to music and I hope to see music (and film) being used on a much larger scale than it already is, to bring about social and political change, and to create a better world for all. The same goes for film my friends and fellow film lovers! – Now on a more personal note:

I have just got off the phone to L.A, where I spoke with the amazing Mr. Billy Griffin, Soul King of America… Billy Griffin (born in Baltimore, Maryland)is an American singer and songwriter. He is best known for replacing Smokey Robinson as lead singer of The Miracles in 1972. Griffin has written songs and sung backing vocals for Aretha Franklin, The O’Jays, Ronald Isley, Freda Payne, Edwin Starr, Evelyn Champagne King, Herb Alpert, Martine McCutcheon, The Emotions and many others. Billy has had so many more wonderful achievements in the world of music and was honored with the other Miracles, when the group received a Star on the Hollywood Walk Of Fame on March 20, 2009.

Billy Griffin found me through my human rights activism and awareness campaigns, which I am able to conveniently execute through my film production company, Atlantic Star Productions. Billy has been following my work in Africa for quite some time now. It was a year or so ago when he wrote to me and said, ‘Ebony, one day, we should work on something together.’

For the past two and a half years I have been working tirelessly on a documentary about the LRA conflict in East Africa and the child soldiers and other victims of war in Northern Uganda, entitled Child Troopers. In 2010, I set-up  a not for profit organization Bikes 4 Life, raising bicycles for neglected, impoverished  and isolated victims of war. Billy’s desire to get involved with me on a humanitarian project has never slipped my mind. We have kept in touch over the internet and planned to meet one day. However, until this afternoon, I had never actually spoken to him. (I had tried but he is harder to get a hold of than me!) So I called again today, and I actually got through!

It was great to hear his cool mellow voice, and even better than his voice was when I asked him to guess who it was on the phone. He was like …’EBONY  from AUSTRALIA!’. (I did however hint that we had never spoken on the hone before – but still, he got it straight away!)

Lately I’ve been writing to Billy quite frequently, as my film is getting closer to completion, or at least it feels like it is! I am heading to America next month to meet my new co- producer in Hollywood, Alec Pedersen. Alec was involved with the 2009 Academy Award winning documentary film ‘The Cove’ and not only does he bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to the project, he he also brings much credibility. During my trip I  had also been planning to meet with Billy Griffin while in Los Angeles, to talk about what we would work on together. It was only a few weeks ago when I was looking back on a photograph of Stevie Wonder and Billy Griffin together, (Billy and Stevie are very close friends) that I had a revelation.. I had seen the photo before and loved it, but this time it really got my brain ticking… A few days earlier I had also discovered that Stevie Wonder was awarded the UN (United Nations) Messenger for Peace in 2009.

I had it. I had a brilliant idea, and I knew if I could somehow get it off the ground, that it would have wings, it would fly… it would be absolutely amazing. I told Billy straight away what I was thinking. I basically asked him if he would consider getting together with Stevie Wonder to write a song for the soundtrack in my documentary film, Child Troopers…  a song to represent peace, a song to bring about change, a song to end the suffering of the world’s children…  Music for Change. Movies that Matter. Music and Movies that Make a Difference!!!

We conversed back and forth and as it currently stands, I may be pitching the idea to Stevie Wonder myself when I am in LA next month! How I wish I had a team of people helping me on this project. Billy stressed the importance of creating media buzz and hype around the project and assured me that there would be no reason Stevie Wonder or any other musician of his caliber wouldn’t get involved! Billy Griffin was so far in. One down and one to go. Now I am after Mr. Wonder. That’s a challenge and half. But boy, do I love a challenge!!

Dear supporters, fellow music lovers and film fanatics, filmmakers and friends alike, I ask you to please help me with some ideas to create buzz in the States (and Oz), all the way from Melbourne Australia. Let’s get Stevie Wonder doing the soundtrack for an Australian production, let’s get these soul kings to help make the world a better place, by making a song that is sung in all corners of the globe, that is a message of peace, a message of hope…! A message to end world wars and to ensure we make it top priority of all political agenda’s to protect our women and children.

I will do my best to achieve these wild, but nevertheless attainable dreams for the very women and children who I dedicate this work to. However, even if it doesn’t come to fruition this time around,  I will continue to put my heart and soul into making this film, and attempt to reach out to the masses, to protect the innocent civilians caught up in brutal conflicts throughout the world and to help in the campaign to  bring an end to the use of children in war.

Film is a superior medium,  music some say, is equal in greatness.  However all things united, just like people united, are the most powerful of all. Therefore, when film and music are also united, what results is an integrated medium of the most greatest possible force, infinitely capable of creating significant social, political, economic and environmental change, capable of bringing about peace to the world, love to the planet and justice to all… And right now, such changes are needed most!

I welcome all your thoughts on this project… Thank you!

To get involved or to follow our projects see the links below:


http://bikes4life.com.au

http://behance.net/atlanticstar

http://vimeo.com/channels/asptv

http://atlanticstarproductions.com

http://childtroopers.wordpress.com

Please join us Twitter:            @ebony_atlanta       @atlanticstar233      @bikes4lifeorg

Or find us on Facebook:

facebook.com/ebonyatlantabutler     facebook.com/childtroopers     facebook.com/bikes4lifeorg

facebook.com/dancingthroughthepain           facebook.com/atlanticstarproductions

%d bloggers like this: