Autumn

A homeless, teenage drug-addicted prostitute meets a harm reduction worker who uses unconventional methods to save her from a life of self-destruction. Her daily struggle becomes heightened after tragedy strikes and she must decide which path she will ultimately take.

Creative team

Co-writer: Alanna Belak
Co-writer/director: Carole Ducharme
Producer: Janelle Miguel

Filmmaker’s statement

Producer Janelle Miguel says:

Autumn was a final project for the entertainment business management program at Vancouver Film School.

Over the years, I have encountered stories similar to Autumn’s.

Autumn is a story based on the experiences of various women from the downtown east side. These stories belonged to individuals that have come from troubled homes – no homes – and been battered, victimized or ostracized in some way.

Many times these individuals have no-one to love them or stand by them through their most difficult transitions and have lived a hard life simply because we, as a society, have failed them on all levels. The greatest tool to these individuals are social workers and harm reduction workers who have been instrumental in bringing positive life changes to these people.

Autumn can be anyone – someone’s daughter, sister, friend, you or me. This is a universal story that everyone can relate to on some level.

The objective of the film was to tell a moving story that captured the rawness and edginess of the downtown east side Vancouver. I envisioned the opportunity to create two strong female roles which were played by Stephanie Wilson and Julia Benson and to have an experienced director, Carole Ducharme, drive the project.

Carole instantly connected to the script and came on board as the director and, under Carole‘s guidance, Autumn blossomed.

Autumn also needed to be shot using a high definition camera (Canon 7D), operated by a professional DOP, Pieter Stathis. This worked quite well because Pieter was able to connect with Carole’s vision and capture some very raw, real footage for the film.

Autumn was shot in two days and filmed in three locations with a budget of $1,100. The film came under budget, was finished on time and was high quality. The biggest goal was to a create a moving story with a visually stunning look and we hope that it did just that.”

About Carole Ducharme

Carole-Ducharme

Carole Ducharme is an award-winning writer, director, producer and the founder of Witness Productions Inc. and Witness Media Inc.

Based in Vancouver, her production companies are dedicated to creating innovative films, television programs and multiplatform projects in English and French.

Carole was born in Montreal and graduated from the University of Montreal’s law school. After specializing in film financing, she worked in Paris as head of international co-productions where she co-produced Michel Brault’s Mon Amie Max with Genevieve Bujold.

A Vancouver resident since 1996, Carole has been writing, directing and producing in French and English, in all genres. Her work includes short fiction films: Ben Voyons, Camille! (best short film at FeFF in Toronto); Straight From the Suburbs (best short film at the Women in Film Festival in Seattle); and Love Interruptus.

Her documentaries include Man-Made Women and Les Enfants du Quartier. Reality and documentary series include Making the Cut, seasons one and two; The Next Great Chef; and X-Weighted. Youth series include Canada à la Carte and SOS Écologie. Carole has also worked on the animated television series Cybersix and the multi-camera studio series Smart Sex Talk and The Afterlife.

Carole is currently writing the feature comedy Le Donneur (The Donor) with the assistance of Telefilm Canada and the Harold Greenberg Fund, and she wrote the highly acclaimed feature film script The Women of My Life with the assistance of Telefilm Canada, BC Film, The Harold Greenberg Fund, Movie Central, NSI Features First and Women in the Director’s Chair.

The Women of My Life was a finalist at the Moondance International Film Festival 2006 Screenplay Competition in Hollywood and was invited to the 2007 French Production Forum in Namur, Belgium.

Carole is also and the co-creator, co-writer and co-producer of the dramedy television series Pourquoi Vancouver? for broadcaster Radio-Canada.

Carole is a graduate of the Women in the Director’s Chair workshop and NSI Features First. She is the treasurer of the FRIC (French Directors Outside of Quebec Association) and a board member the Creative Women Workshop Association.

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