SEAN BAEK * WES BERGER * CLAIRE BURNS * DANIEL BRIERE * SHARMILA DEY * ANDREW JACKSON * ANITA LA SELVA * JANI LAUZON * SERA-LYS MCARTHUR * MARCEL STEWART * MICHAELA WASHBURN * ASTRID VAN WIEREN
a feature film written & directed by JON MICHAELSON
• 1 hr 40 min 44 sec • Drama * Completed October 2018 *
North American Distribution forthcoming January 2019 via INDIECAN Entertainment Inc.
Set in the East Toronto neighborhoods of Leslieville / Riverside, THE RIVER YOU STEP IN is a character driven drama about a maverick social worker and the people she tries to help, and how the best intentions can go awry.
On the Screenplay
"I think the script is brilliant, a real film with real characters...raw and funny and scary and complex, just like life is." Assistant Director Paco Bermudez
“Great Indie script! Edgy, tragic, funny in all the right spots - real characters and a story about real life! “ Agent Sandie Newton
"Super heart wrenching and dynamic, a real page turner that second half! Great tension and suspense and reveal. " Film Producer Laura Nordin
On the Movie
“Astrid Van Wieren is the warm and soulful catalyst at the center of The River You Step In. She brings together a number of compelling stories to form a heartfelt tribute to the resilience of the human spirit."
Moze Mossanen, film-maker
“Strong performances -
This film creates a lot of tension, all the way through, as it explores violence against women and the institutional blindness to this issue, and how this seeps into a world view and shapes experiences and relationships.”
Carolyn Combs, Film Director, Vancouver
“This movie is a resonant exploration of the power of listening, the cost and rewards of caring, the pain of losing, and the grace of learning to move on. Stevie's journey towards acceptance speaks to all of us who have ever had to find a way to come to terms with our mistakes."
Erika Warmbrunn, NYC, author, Where The Pavement Ends
"As a social worker whose life is spinning out of control, Astrid Van Wieren gives a masterful performance. The ironic story and its telling are like something out of Flannery O'Connor. "
Rose Cullis, Playwright, Toronto
“It's a wonderful story. Full of compassion, and this movie intertwines the characters enough so we can experience Stevie crossing her own boundaries and getting personally attached…Great work, I loved the characters and the actors, the camera work and locations.”
Lianne Ritchie, 51westdesign, NYC
SHORTS & DOCUMENTARIES
OURS, MINE, YOURS
A day unravels for a young man as he and his girlfriend divide the contents of their shared home and go their separate ways. From a short story by Derek Brown, this was shot (in Beta SP) over a wintry weekend, in a property on the grounds of the Canadian Film Center. The disengaging couple were played by Paul Braunstein and T.L. Forsberg, who worked well together breaking up.
PRODUCTION CREDITS Beta SP (15 mins)
Writer: Derek Brown
DP: Rudolph Blahacek
Editor: Sarah Peddie
Music: Arvo Part
Producer: Charlene Olson, Ravin Productions, Toronto
Cast: Paul Braunstein, TL Forsberg
THE TEMPEST ON SNAKE ISLAND (part one) (prep)
WELFARE STATE INTERNATIONAL & Company rehearse The Tempest On Snake Island for the Toronto International Theatre Festival Onstage '81 – A DOCUMENTARY.
Hanging out with a band of theatre gypsies from the UK as they work up their playfully dreamlike take on Shakespearian themes of magic, power and dispossession, for a processional style show inspired by Prosperian revels, to be staged on Snake Island at night. Cast: John Fox, Boris Howarth, Sue Fox, Lois, Tony, Neil, Andy, Jamie and Toronto Islanders and friends.
(nb. 16mm workprint)
JM, producer / director / editor
Sound: Clark McCarron
16mm colour (40 mins) Produced under the auspices of the National Film Board of Canada, and the British Arts Council.
Public screenings: Wards Island Tor; Ryerson University; Univ of Peterborough, Ont; London Film-maker's Co-op, UK.
“Educational and entertaining...a very worthwhile venture...”
Jack Livesley, TV Ontario
THE TEMPEST ON SNAKE ISLAND (part two) (show)
(nb. 16mm workprint)
WELFARE STATE INTERNATIONAL & Company rehearse The Tempest On Snake Island for the Toronto International Theatre Festival Onstage '81 – A DOCUMENTARY
Ferry boats, processions, fortune wheels, fireworks, giant Space monsters, a trip to the moon, shadow puppets, bagpipes, barn dancing !
I N F I D E L I T Y
“Infidelity” tries to capture something lasting about an overnight encounter between two confused but consenting spouses with divided loyalties.
It's meant as an ironic but heartfelt vigil from despair to hope – in its true blue way it's a fairy tale for consenting adults.
I'm immoderately proud of my two strangers in the night, Guylaine St. Onge and Howard Hoover, for fooling around with such integrity.
As for myself, after years of being married to theatre, it was a pleasure to be caught cheating in a more durable medium.
Written & Directed by JM Produced by Charlene Olson
Cast: Guylaine St-Onge, Howard Hoover
DP: Gavin Smith
Sound: Bob Rouse
Editor: Sarah Peddie
Music: Thim Clement
25 minutes - 16mm colour Production Co: Ravin, Tor. via Ontario Media Development Corporation's Calling Card Program.
Screened at the Bloor St. Cinema, Toronto. Broadcast on Showcase network, Canada.
“His film work shows his customary gifts as an actors' director, with a sensitivity to mise-en-scene. I believe that his feature film debut is long overdue.” Atom Egoyan