The Story of LULLABY – a short fantasy horror film…
Updated: Feb 17, 2020
At this next stage, we are seeking assistance in getting this unique film out to DRAFTJS_BLOCK_KEY:26lu1festivals. That is where you can help us.response with disastrous consequences.
We are the filmmakers of LULLABY. Led by director Kae Fujisawa, executive producers Nicole Gut and Ryan Millis and producer Jack Utrata.
“Little did I know that this childhood scene would become an integral part of a movie. Being ‘shoved around’ is not pleasant. LULLABY is a fantasy, but it addresses many issues in our lives.”
We have already had such incredible support from the community, true fans of LULLABY who see the potential it has both in NY and BEYOND!
At this next stage, we are seeking assistance in getting this unique film out to festivals. That is where you can help us.
The Story of “LULLABY”
Adapted from Nicole Gut’s short play of the same name, this SAG-AFTRA short film is about two below-the-law working-class men who encounter a homeless woman: a singer who has lost her voice. Her mere existence is a trigger for one of the mad boys, leading to a night with hazardous and disastrous consequences for all three individuals.
“Some of the material from LULLABY came from my childhood…”
As a young girl, I was bullied. When I was in grammar school, I used to sing on the school bus. I have a good voice. People threw money in my cup. I felt like I was being thanked for what I was doing. A few days later, I was singing again, on the bus. This time, some bullies came up and put money in my cup and started shoving me around. I got so angry that I threw the money back in their faces. I never sang on the bus again.
Little did I know that this childhood scene would become an integral part of a movie. Being ‘shoved around’ is not pleasant. LULLABY is a fantasy, but it addresses many issues in our lives.
Bullying, for example, is an issue that we all deal with worldwide. Hate crimes and homelessness—which are part of the story in LULLABY—are also issues with which we struggle. In this story, there are also social problems and matters that explore two major questions: what is true justice? What is retribution?”
“Lullaby” Trailer 2 from Utrata By Design Productions on Vimeo.
“When I first read Nicole’s short play, LULLABY, I was struck with its mesmerizingly rapid unfolding of actions. It keeps moving at the speed of light, mirroring the characters’ changing minds. In transforming it into a film, I tried to keep this velocity. At the same time, the film format allowed me to explore the domain of memories—to turn the vector of time flow, change its rhythm, and expose a revived moment from the past as a vision. As these memory scenes concern death, LULLABY involves fantastic elements, blurring the border between this world and another. Yet, I believe that LULLABY escapes from being labeled simply as a horror movie or a ghost movie. Rather, it is a psychological thriller that opens our eyes to the mysterious workings of our human psyche.”
— Kae Fujisawa, Director
The Genesis of LULLABY…
“Artistic creation, especially that of film, is often governed by ‘accidents.’ The genesis of the film LULLABY is no exception. It originates from Nicole’s short play, LULLABY. She revived this once dormant play to put it on stage, after
reuniting with Ryan (“Brian Mills/Mad Boy 2”) and meeting the other gifted actor, Nicholas (“Michael Franklin/Mad Boy 1”). Nicole and I had accidentally become friends by the time, which meant that by luck I was able to direct the play. Our collaboration added a new character, the mother of Mad Boy 2 (although she is only mentioned in the play). Nicole took the role of the homeless woman, Sarah.
The play premiered at the John Cullum Theatre at the American Theatre of Actors in Manhattan in New York in October 2018. Then, with Ryan’s insight and assistance, Nicole decided to transform LULLABY into a SAG short film.
Nicole and I spent long nights working on the backstories of the characters, detailed enough for a feature film. Happy accidents—encounters with fabulous crew members (Kristy, Dustin, Estella, Jack, Jason, and Yasmeen) and the addition of the superb Susan as Mad Boy 2’s mother—followed.
Yet, we had difficulties to face. The most central was epitomized by the problem in securing a detention facility for the jail scene. To remedy the problem, Nicole transferred the scene to that of the Mad Boys’ apartment, a rental that
we happened upon for the weekend shoot. Accordingly, the appearance of Sarah as a guard in the jail cell at the end of the play became a live TV-news report segment.
The filming of LULLABY took place in Manhattan in early February 2019. Footage from the film was used for advertising the event DEFEAT THE STREET (John Cullum Theatre, February-March 2019), in which the play LULLABY was performed again. And most recently, LULLABY premiered at The Network Film Festival in September 2019 and was nominated for 2 awards (Best Actress and Best Cinematography).
This was a journey blessed by many fortunate accidents. We had a wonderfully positive energy that turned misfortunes into fortunes. I hope that LULLABY will take off as a full-length movie or series someday soon as there is much more story to tell you—our audience—about Sarah and the Mad Boys.”
For more information or to help us promote LULLABY…
Visit our Website: Lullaby Visit our page on Indiegogo: Lullaby – Short Film
Lullaby Promo Package from Utrata By Design Productions on Vimeo.