When Francine was a young girl she had to deal with knowing her father sexually abused her older sister, Nan, on a regular basis. Her sister was strong and sacrificed herself to prevent Francine from being abused. It took years for Francine to understand how traumatized she had been, and how big a price Nan paid to help her survive.
When Francine was eight and Nan was fourteen Nan was killed by a drunk driver....Ben Nighthawk. Without Nan Francine was lost. She fought with her father, tried to protect her mother, and left home at seventeen to join the US Army. She became a videographer for the 55th Signal Corps. She spent a tour in Iraq where she often worked on the front lines and was wounded saving another soldier's life. After the service she became a cinematographer who specialized in shooting creative video for documentaries, narrative films, and music videos.
She is obsessed with shooting secret video of the artists and people who pass through her life. The resultant footage gives her power over them. This puts her in conflict with the rest of the crew, who don't approve of this intrusion on people's private lives. Francine is a creative production designer who constantly comes up with new uses for a wide variety of cameras.
She is haunted by the memory of her sister and driven to avenge her death. When she finds Ben Nighthawk she must put into action her desire for revenge. Although Francine is inspired by the Furies, she must come to grips with the reality of killing another human being while keeping her own humanity. She struggles with this burden of avenging her sister. She is fearless in all aspects of her life, but killing Ben Nighthawk has her frustrated and unsure.
She enjoys designing and shooting the footage for Hometown Music Americana, and the crew becomes the family she never had. But Cliff can drive her crazy, and Beth frustrates her because she is blind to the allure and danger of Ben Nighthawk. She respects Tom for his professionalism, and hates who Ross is and what he stands for.
Francine has echoes of conflicted avengers Lisbeth Salander in The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and Hamlet.
Ilona is a free-spirit who has fallen too deeply into the party-drug-sex-filled lifestyle of the music scene in New York City. She has let Ross corrupt her with sadistic sex and drug-fueled partying. She loves many music styles and isn't afraid to let anyone know how she feels.
She is struggling with the dilemma of either staying with Ross and his sick lifestyle because he is her entree into the hip scene, or breaking away and being on her own. She is attractive and loves the Steampunk look. She also loves Ben Nighthawk's music and looks, which infuriates Ross. She and Francine share many common characteristics, especially a need to avenge a crime.
Ilona is spontaneous and uninhibited, but not stupid. Her eyes are slowly being opened to her situation.
Beth is a quiet, steady, hard-working professional who sometimes thinks life and fun have passed her by. She is a single mom who often feels guilty for being away from her 8-year-old son, Eric, so much. She is from a small shore town in New Jersey and her single mom watches Eric while she is gone. She naturally takes on the burdens of others, and is the stabilizing force of the crew. She has a tendency to get romantically involved with the singers, and is naive to the consequences these involvements can lead to. She has a good sense of humor.
She likes Francine because she is the leader of the technical crew and has a good heart. But she doesn't approve of Francine's obsession with secret filming, and thinks she can be too harsh when discussing other members of the crew. She enjoys Cliff's constant references to health foods, and sides with Cliff in the arguments about Francine going too far with her secret cameras. Tom is her authority figure for the whole experience and she supports him totally. Sometimes to a fault.
Ross Sebal was groomed from birth to assume a leadership role in his father's company, Global Media Network. Jealous and envious of his father's success Ross created a wild sex and drug fueled lifestyle for himself to spite his conservative father.
Smart and devious, he has successfully built a reputation as a Music Director and discoverer of new musical talent. His specialty is finding and nurturing heavy metal, rapper, and hip-hop artists.
He often disagrees with his father, and their relationship is a deteriorating one. Ross's lifestyle endangers the company image. Ross's steampunk girlfriend, Ilona, has become an issue.
Ross's deep-seated insecurities and violent temper often drive him to make serious social mistakes. His sadistic sexual appetites often place him in dangerous and vulnerable situations.
He dislikes Tom, the documentary crew, and Ben Nighthawk. He sees them as low-level losers who won't be able to pull off the pilot. He mistreats Ilona and fights with Renata. He lives on the edge and when he is pushed over the edge he becomes a killer.
Ross's father and the President of
Global Media. Hs is an old school business man who made his money and built his company by winning many battles with his high-flying competition. In his drive for money he ignored Ross and his wife. As a result, Ross feels unappreciated and angry.
For Abe, Global Media is the only child he cares about.
Ned Eckhardt © 2017 | All Rights Reserved
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Cliff is a wired, outgoing, obsessive hipster. He is a time warp hippy who talks the talk. He is obsessed with health food and is always pushing it on the crew, with limited success. He is enthusiastic, professional, and always into who and what they are shooting. He is a tech freak who understands how the equipment and systems work. He loves his work and doesn't like it being jeopordized by impulsive decisions.
Cliff likes everybody but always disagrees with Francine's constant rigging of hidden cameras to eavesdrop on their subjects. Their arguments are loud and close to physical. He teases Beth about her romantic encounters, and she doesn't like it. He and Tom are old friends and often they side with each other on issues.
Tom Anderson is an African American music producer/director who has seen it all. He is tired of struggling to keep crews together and dealing with artists who don't know how to be team players. His world weariness gives him a low key professionalism the crew likes.
He grew up in a middle class, integrated neighborhood in Pittsburgh, PA. His parents were strict with him and he developed an obsessive work ethic that drives him to always complete the task at hand. He has a low-key disposition which enables him to be an effective liaison between the field activities and the bosses in New York City.
He realizes he is probably working on his last chance for a major success, and he is driven to be successful. He admires the energy and creativity Francine brings to the visual elements in the show. But her constant pushing of the limits of truth and privacy infuriate him. They have a love-hate relationship.
Cliff is his buddy and friend. They have worked together many times over the years and they trust each other. Beth is a solid, dependable person he enjoys being around.
The Global Media people in New York are always pushing him, and it frustrates him. Abe is a proven old-timer who has earned Tom's respect, but he truly dislikes Ross. Ross's deviant life-style and inflated ego rub him the wrong way constantly. He and Renata are old friends who respect each other. Tom appreciates the fine line Renata must walk as she works with both the Sebals and the Field Crew.
NEWS - REDBONE- Winner Best Script - 2017 London International Filmmaker Festival
Ben Nighthawk's father was a full-blooded Ojibwe Indian from northern Minnesota. His mother, Emma, was white. Because they were a mixed-race family, they were not allowed to live on the White Earth reservation. This exclusion has bothered Ben his whole life. Ben is a Redbone. He was bullied and teased unmercifully about being a half-breed while he was growing up. He hung out with other social outcasts and didn't care about school. His father drank too much and his mother was overwhelmed by her situation.
Music was Ben's refuge. He played the guitar and loved the story-telling tradition of Americana-roots-folk style music. His musical style is infused by Steve Earl, John Prine, Bob Dylan, and Johnny Cash.
One morning when he was eighteen he cut school and got high with his friends. While he was driving drunk, the car skidded on the ice and crashed into two young girls waiting for their school bus. One of them died. Francine Olsen was the other girl. The judge sentenced him to fifteen years in St Cloud prison for vehicular homicide. Redbones don't get many breaks from white judges. While he was in prison he practiced his singing and songwriting.
After he had served his time he decided to become a singer of Americana music and let his songs help him heal his emotional wounds. He liked the nomadic life and freedom of an itinerant singer's life.
Ben enjoys brief love affairs as he travels, but never lets anyone inside his head or his heart.
He is a vulnerable, charismatic singer-songwriter. Every day he tries to free himself from the memory of the terrible accident that took an innocent life.
Renata is a second-generation Latina who has earned her successes in the production business. Her immigrant parents have always supported her drive to educate and prove herself. She is a fair, honest, talented woman who has arrived at middle age poised to take the final step to upper-level production projects. Hometown Music Americana is her opportunity to achieve her goal. But she can be a fierce fighter when she feels her principles and reputation have been attacked. This often puts her in conflict with the Sebals at Global who are thinking only of money.
She and Tom are birds of a feather. They like and respect each other. She appreciates what the crew is going through as Ross keeps throwing them curveballs. But in the end she is dedicated to producing a high quality pilot, and this often puts her in uncomfortable positions. She loves Americana music and Ben Nighthawk's talents, and will fight to
save the show.
The Documentary Crew Global Media Network
Francine Olsen (27) Lead camera Abe Sebal (60) President
Cliff Adams (35) Second camera Ross Sebal (35) Music Producer
Beth Stanik (31) Sound technician Renata Marenco (42) Series Producer
Tom Anderson (50) Director Ilona (19) A Steampunk Girl
Ben Nighthawk (35) Singer-songwriter
Feature Film Script