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‘April’s Way’ Revisits the Lessons of the 1992 Los Angeles Riots

'April's Way' Revisits the Lessons of the 1992 Los Angeles Riots

[Editors Note: Project of the Day is presented in partnership with Blackmagic Design, one of the world’s leading innovators and manufacturers of creative video technology.]

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April’s Way

Logline: Based on a true story. A short film about a Korean store owner struggling to protect his market during the 1992 Los Angeles race riots.

Elevator Pitch: 
“April’s Way” is unique because it focuses on a Korean store owner during the looting of the 1992 Los Angeles race riots, which is an often overlooked storyline. It’s also based on a true story, and is relevant to the social injustices happening today.

– Recently featured on NBC News 
– We shot on 35mm film that was left over from the Coen Brothers’ upcoming “Hail. Caesar!”
– We filmed in a Korean-owned market that actually burned down during the 1992 LA riots.

Bill Pope, ASC said April’s Way is, “Terrific! Really spooky, human, and moving.”

Production Team:
Director – Robert Nyerges started working in the industry on the production staff of Hollywood feature films such as “Lincoln,” “The Lone Ranger,” “The Wolf of Wall Street” and “Interstellar.” Robert cites that seeing the masters of cinema exercising their craft first-hand, the likes of Spielberg, Scorsese, Mann, Nolan, and Fincher, was a motivational and an awe-inspiring blessing. Since his time in production, Robert has produced a number of award-winning music videos and short films. Since Robert began studying with famed acting and directing coach, Judith Weston, he has directed a number of music videos and commercial spots.

Producer – Matt Hardman has produced a number of award-winning short films and music videos. Most notable are, “Death of the Cool,” which won Best Short at the 2011 Sacramento International Film Festival, and “Brady,” which earned a Vimeo Staff Pick and was a Short of the Week. He has also worked extensively in production, and post-production, on commercials for clients like Redbull, Toyota, Blue Origin, Rhapsody, and Samsung.

Cinematographer – Nicholas Wiesnet, a graduate of Chapman, has photographed feature films, shorts, and music videos for artists like Justin Bieber, Rick Ross, and Skrillex. He has also been nominated for an ASC Heritage Award.

Composer – Christoffer Franzén, of Lights & Motion, is a Swedish musician, producer, and multi-instrumentalist who has created music for the trailers of movies like “Furious 7” and “Lone Survivor.”

About the Film:
“April’s Way” happens to closely parallel real-life accounts of the owners of the filming location, which actually burned-down during the riots. Their perseverance to rebuild their market, their lives, and their community has inspired us to adopt their narrative into ours.

While “April’s Way” follows a Korean protagonist, our mission is to humanize all involved, as the market serves as an intersection of races, but not stereotypes. We hope to continue the conversation about our cyclical history of violence. What have we learned from the ’92 riots? What haven’t we? Why does our 1992 period-piece look like the headlines of today?

Current Status: In our final week of crowdfunding to complete the film!

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Project of the Month: Blackmagic Design will award Indiewire’s Project of the Month winners (November, December, January) with one (1) Blackmagic DaVinci Resolve 12 License each. DaVinci Resolve 12 combines professional non-linear video editing with the world’s most advanced color corrector so now you can edit, color correct, finish and deliver all from one system. 

Project of the Year: Blackmagic Design will award Indiewire’s Project of the Year winner (announced in January) with one (1) Blackmagic URSA Mini 4k, the world’s first high end digital film camera designed to revolutionize workflow on set. 

For more information about Blackmagic please visit: https://www.blackmagicdesign.com

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