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COAST

For 15-year-old Abby Avila, home is the last place she wants to be. As her small town trappings and Mother's unlived dreams close in on her, Abby seeks refuge in music. When she befriends a traveling punk rock band, she discovers freedom in making her voice heard, and sees her home through new eyes.

 

 

 
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THE STORY

 

We follow Abby Avila, a quiet 15 year-old girl, coping with the breakdown of her family and the feelings of being trapped in her small coastal farming community

 

Just as Abby begins to act out and take bigger risks, she meets Dave, the lead singer of a punk band, whose van breaks down in town. Dave teaches her how to live out loud, opening up a new world of possibility.

 

When Abby comes to a crossroad of leaving what she’s always known behind for the promise of something more exciting, she is confronted with betrayal and is forced to face her own truths, learning lessons about friendship, love, change, and what it really means to be home.

 
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Why Coast?

When Cindy Kitagawa (writer) and her childhood friend Wendy Guerrero (producer), had a discussion with producing partner Bruce Dern about the women they had become, they knew there was a story there. A story that was much more relatable than the common narrative portrayed in TV and film. Their narrative was one that explores what it is like to grow up in a small diverse farming community like Santa Maria, CA, a place diverse not only in race but in economics, where no one tells you how to dream, and, who you wi11 become is almost impossible to see. Set against this backdrop, COAST is the moment right before womanhood, when your friends are your life and your music is your soul. COAST is an empowering female story about finding your value and self worth. 

THE CHARACTERS

FATIMA PTACEK as "ABBY" Rebel spirit/ occasional dreamer.          

FATIMA PTACEK as "ABBY"

Rebel spirit/ occasional dreamer.          

Refusing the road that's been paved for me.

KANE RITCHOTTE as "DAVE" Singer/ prophet/ rebel artist              

KANE RITCHOTTE as "DAVE"

Singer/ prophet/ rebel artist              

Changing the world one stage at a time.

BRUCE DERN as "MR. BUSBY" Cal. History teacher and ex-hippie.        

BRUCE DERN as "MR. BUSBY"

Cal. History teacher and ex-hippie.        

Life is good. Every.Single.Day.
 

"CHRIS" Young neighbor/ Abby's pseudo big brother/ constant smart ass.

"CHRIS"

Young neighbor/ Abby's pseudo big brother/ constant smart ass.

I do not hang out with teenagers.
KAYLEE KAMIYA as "LAURA" Honor roll/ nail biter/ always tells the truth even if it hurts. 

KAYLEE KAMIYA as "LAURA"

Honor roll/ nail biter/ always tells the truth even if it hurts. 

Potentially grounded for life.

MIA FRAMPTON as "KRISTI" City girl/ punk forever. Why talk. when you can mock.

MIA FRAMPTON as "KRISTI"

City girl/ punk forever. Why talk. when you can mock.

Deal with me.                 

EDUARDO ROMAN as "MR. ACOSTA" Kat's father/ family man/ first generation immigrant.

EDUARDO ROMAN as "MR. ACOSTA"

Kat's father/ family man/ first generation immigrant.

Hard work gets you far.  
                              

MIA XILTALI as "KAT"

Best friend/ hard worker/ proud of her family.

I'm comfortable just being me.

"DEBRA" Abby's mom/ nurse/ Too young to be a mom.    

"DEBRA"

Abby's mom/ nurse/ Too young to be a mom.    

Doing the best l can right now.

"OLIVIA" Straight-shooter/ Powerful Presence/ Filled with life experience

"OLIVIA"

Straight-shooter/ Powerful Presence/ Filled with life experience

You don’t wear a ring. BUT the burden of a man.


WHO'S MAKING THIS FILM?

 
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DirectorS

Jessica Hester & Derek Schweickart

Directors Jessica Hester and Derek Schweickart have completed 6 short films amongst which they have won awards for "Best Ensemble," (The Dress, La Comedy Film Festival), "Best Cinematography," (Illusion,Beverly Hills Film Festival), "Audience Award" (Dreaming Don't Make It So, Hollyshorts Monthly Festival), and Jessica won the DVFS Visionary Award at Vision Fest in New York for Illusion. Their last two films were period pieces (1940's and 1980's), and their filmography is rich in variety. Illusion was a VFX-heavy fantastical film, The 4th, a gritty urban cautionary tale, The Dress, a moving ensemble piece about dysfunction at a wedding,Picked Up, a real-time romance with a case of denied identity,Dreaming Don't Make It So, a musical drama with original songs, andLong Walk to Forever, a beautiful adaptation of Kurt Vonnegut's beloved short story. These two have the filmmaking range and passion to bring Coast to life in an exciting way.

Writer - CINDY KITAGAWA

Cindy makes her screenwriting debut with Coast; paying respects to the small coastal agricultural community she grew up in. For more than a decade she has worked as an account executive and copywriter in the advertising industry, and is a former freelance writer for Los Angeles Valley Scene Magazine. Cindy began writing Coast after a conversation with life-long friend and producer Wendy Guerrero. The story is a personal reflection of their days growing up in a small town and how it influenced the women they have become. She is currently at work, writing her next feature, an immigration/female boxer story with Director, Jessica Hester.

EXECUTIVE PRODUCER - Sonya Lunsford

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Sonya Lunsford’s impressive track record includes film accounting, financing, and working closely with high profile indie filmmakers such as Steven Soderbergh. Sonya’s track record for optimizing costing efficiencies on aggressively budgeted independent films will be an invaluable asset to the project.  Her experience speaks for itself on the numerous films she has produced and co-produced including the 2012 Oscar nominated film, The Help.

PRODUCER - WENDY GUERRERO

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Wendy Guerrero recently co-produced her first feature film, NORTHERN BORDERS, through her company, PubliclyPrivate, which she formed with partner, Bruce Dern. Previously, Wendy has spent several satisfying years producing and directing theater in New York and Los Angeles. Some of her highlights include directing Bloody Poetry at the Sanford Meisner Theater in New York City. Producing The Effects of Gamma Rays on Man-in-the-Moon Marigols at the Weist Baron Theater in NYC, in addition to producing several original plays from new playwrights at Weist Baron Theater. She also directed the World Premiere of Chicken in Los Angeles at the Lillian Theater and directed several 24 Hour theater festivals at the Elephant Theater in Los Angeles. Wendy is an alumni of Film Independent's Producer 's Lab and Circle in the Square in New York City. She currently divides her time between working in locations for film, television and commercials in Los Angeles and developing and producing feature films and content for other media. Wendy is now the CEO, president of the Bentonville Film Festival with a mission of being a positive and proactive influence in filmmaking to ensure films represent the national audience and the growing diversity of the population of the United States.

PRODUCER - PIN-CHUN LIU

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Pin-Chun was born and raised in Kaohsiung, Taiwan. In 2008, after earning a degree in Sociology from the National Taiwan University, she began working in production and producing short films. Her first feature, an American-based independent, THE TAIWAN OYSTER, premiered in the 2012 SXSW Film Festival and was an opening night film in the 2012 Urban Nomad. She received her master’s in Producing at the American Film Institute and her thesis, WAY IN RYE, was a finalist for the Student Academy Award. Other films include THE NIGHT IS OURS and CONTRAPELO, which premiered at Tribeca and was short listed for 2016 Oscar Best Live Action Short Film. Together they have played at more than 50 film festivals and have won several ‘best short film’ awards. She is currently developing and fundraising for her feature film projects.

PRODUCER - CAITLIN ENGEL

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Caitlin Engel's first foray into production was in 2010 on The Edge with Jake Sasseville, the first independently syndicated late night talk show, which aired on ABC affiliates across the U.S. Engel was responsible for entertainment campaigns with the Starwood Hotel Group, State Farm, Procter & Gamble, and Overstock.com. Caitlin then moved on to produce the short film, Long Walk to Forever in partnership with the Kurt Vonnegut trust, and has since worked on several short films and music videos, including the MTV VMA nominated music video/short film Crooked Smile, which was directed by Sheldon Candis for Grammy nominated recording artist, J. Cole. Caitlin serves as a junior board member for "Step Up," a national non-profit which develops the next generation of female leaders from underserved communities. She's mentored "Step Up" teens for the past six years and it was because of her work with teenage women of color that she connected with the female protagonist in COAST. Her work with "Step Up" is why she's so incredibly passionate about the impact COAST will have on legions of teenage girls across the country.  

CINEMATOGRAPHER - CAROLINA COSTA

Carolina Costa was recently honored with the Mexican Academy of Film Award for Best Cinematography (Ariel Awards) for her film Las Elegidas, produced by Gael Garcia Bernal and Diego Luna. The Coast team was very impressed with her work in the short film ’Contrapelo’, that was on the Oscar short list in 2016.  Carolina’s connection to the girl’s story in Coast, and her desire to capture the essence of each girl is very exciting.  She has a strong sense of how to capture the period, yet understands it’s job, just as the extraordinary land, lives to support, and challenge the human experience. Her curiosity to explore this through images and her recent success-photographing teenagers for Las Elegidas makes her uniquely suited to make Coast, amongst all else, a beautiful film to look at.

 
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SUPPORT COAST

 
  • Follow us on Instagram to learn more about our inspirations and updates of the film.
  • Consider making a tax-deductible donation to support a female driven story set in a diverse community through our fiscal sponsor, WOMEN MAKE MOVIES.
  • Detailed business plan available upon request.