A Taylor University film student has recently written a film titled “Indiana,” which captures the untold tales of the community. Currently ranking in the top 10 in the “Hometown Heroes” indie-film competition, “Indiana” has a chance to be produced by the Duplass Brothers (HBO/Netflix).
The film is a story about outsiders in the heartland America, fighting against the oppression of evolving culture, racism and political turmoil.
Andrew Paul Davis, writer and director of the film, knew that this year would bring about charged events. His film “Indiana” explores the occurrence of these events, questioning the attitude and response of America.
“I got a feeling at the start of this year that the U.S. would start seeing racially charged events, and sure enough, Charlottesville happened,” said Davis. “We need to ask why (these incidents happen), and rally together to make sure future generations don’t continue to reopen our country’s wounds of prejudice.”
The film follows around three characters. Chris, a modern-day racist, Chuck, early retiree and Alexa, a struggling musician. Together the characters examine family, faith, doubt, health, race and the pursuit of music.
“The film doesn’t just deal with racism, I would say all of the characters’ stories are influenced by fractured families,” Davis said. “Another set of characters are Christian-college students, which is a people group I’m a part of but have never seen on the big screen before.”
Benjamin Bethel, a Taylor student and actor in the film, said the film had been a great learning experience and a way to showcase film as a community experience.
A shared community experience is what drove Davis to make Grant County the background for the film.
“I love Grant County, and there’s a certain mix of both sweet & sour that needs portrayal through the vehicle of drama,” said Davis, “This story is a culmination of what I’ve lived and observed in rural Indiana.”
Production and filming are set to take place in early spring. The film will be shot in rural Indiana, predominantly featuring local talent.
“Not enough films are shot in rural Indiana, so the area doesn’t receive much representation,” Davis said.
Davis hopes that this film will convey a message of reconciliation.
“We’re all inevitably connected, especially when inhabiting the same community,” Davis said. “We need reconciliation, and I think storytelling provides that otherwise rare path to empathy.”
“Indiana” will be competing for funding and a spot in the “Top-Ten Most Followed” until Oct. 13. Community members can help support the film at its campaign page at seedandspark.com/fund/Indiana.
Video courtesy of Andrew Paul Davis