If you're new to this journey, welcome. We are a group of writers, directors, producers, editors and more that love working together and have done so in agencies, films and businesses creating work for major brands and for fun. You can see more specifics in the bios below.
One of the reasons why we enjoy telling stories so much is a key reason we hope you'll want to support this latest film. We feel called to stories that help us process and make sense of a world that gives us joy but also brings suffering. All of us are dealing with difficult situations in this very moment — sickness, loss, betrayal and even death — while simultaneously enjoying moments of wonder — good meals with close friends, unexpected gifts, and new life. So, how do we make sense of all this? We believe stories are the best way to understand and dwell on these realities. Not in a way that escapes them, but in a way that meets us where we are and helps us move forward. We're compelled to create work to that end.
The reason you're here today is hopefully a combination of interest in supporting this type of work and curiosity about this latest short film, UNDERNEATH. The video above will be the best way to get a sense of the project, but here's a short text description if you prefer to read.
UNDERNEATH is about a physicist that tragically lost his family several years before the film begins. An unexplainable experience during his childhood may hold the key to his past and future. He is obsessed with how this memory connects to a new theory of time and space that could help him reunite with his wife and daughter, but chasing this dream will be a darker and more difficult journey than he could ever imagine.
UNDERNEATH is a very personal project for Chris Grissom, writer, producer and director of the film. It’s the first film he's made that he's also written. It's an attempt at understanding life by exploring how one's passions for transcendence can lead to missing the transcendent right in front of you.
Brandon Potter stars in the film. The week we cast him we found out he also won Best Actor in Dallas in the Dallas Observer. This is a big deal in the Dallas art scene and he has lived up to the award. He’s played a wide range of characters: King Lear, President Lyndon B Johnson, and now the protagonist of our film — physicist Shane Watkins.
It also stars Brandi Price, one of our favorite actresses - and Kiera Strauss who was recently featured in A&E’s reboot of ROOTS. It’s safe to safe that the performances are stellar.
We've shot many key scenes of the film and need your help to finish the story and prepare it for submission to film festivals. Our goal is for it to impact as many people as possible and for it to lead to relationships and opportunities for future films.
Most people are working for free and the rest are working at a discount. Someone even donated the use of a nice cinema camera. But, there are still things we have to pay for. Fees for a few of the locations, some additional equipment, and a few crew positions that can’t work for free. We have also lined up a professional color artist and audio mixer and even they are are working at a deep discount. This is where these funds will go.
If you decide to join us in addition to our immense gratitude, your additional rewards can be found on the right. Everyone who participates will receive a credit at the end of the film and there are also opportunities to participate in finishing this film with us in the editing process.
So, please, consider giving up a nice supper on the town tonight and help us make UNDERNEATH. Thanks for your time and support. If we hit our goal and complete this film, you will be the reason why we all celebrate its premier. We can't do this without you.
Chris Grissom - Director/Writer/Producer
Chris Grissom is a film director who began his career as a director with the Old 97’s documentary, “Love Letter to Dallas,” which was internationally released by New West Records. In 2011, he completed his first feature-length film, BETWEEN NOTES, which received worldwide distribution through Cinetic Media in New York after premiering at the Dallas International Film Festival. Since then, he's continued to write and direct commercials, features and digital content for brands like HP, AT&T and Google. He has remained in Dallas because he wants to be a voice in Dallas. He wants to make great films and tell stories about its people and places.
Matthew Brown - Writer/Producer
Matt has been a creative director, film producer, writer and marketing strategist for companies like BFM Creative, Skype, FOX and Pursuant, an agency built to serve nonprofits around the country. He wrote and produced a feature film that premiered in the Dallas International Film Festival and picked up international distribution through FilmBuff and conceived, wrote and produced the first of its kind iOS app Seven Poets and the Assassin’s Secret, named to the UK international paper The Guardian’s weekly Top 10 apps list. He currently serves as Director of Creative Strategy for True X, a part of the FOX Advanced Ad Products team, where he works with many of the nation’s largest creative and media agencies to develop interactive ads for brands like Dodge, Disney, Microsoft, 20th Century Fox, Nike and more. He has a BA in marketing from Texas A&M.
Kent Rabalais - Producer
Kent is executive director, communications at The Village Church in Dallas, where over 10,000 people attend services at five campuses across the metroplex. Kent leads the creative, live production, technology and interactive teams as they create work that is viewed by millions of people around the world. He produced the feature film, Between Notes and the first of its kind iOS app Seven Poets and the Assassin’s Secret, named to the UK international paper The Guardian’s weekly Top 10 apps list. Prior to The Village, Kent served as the Creative Director for The Pursuant Group where he produced, wrote, and led creative development on over 1000 innovative online fundraising campaign narratives for clients such as Dallas Children’s Medical Center, the University of Notre Dame, and American Cancer Society.
Kent Rabalais graduated with a BA in Professional Writing from Baylor University.
Josh Pickering - Cinematographer
Josh is an award-winning cinematographer and visual storyteller. He entered the film industry in 2003, and has since shot feature films, numerous shorts, music videos, commercials, and documentaries. A graduate of Baylor University, Josh bleeds green and gold. He loves to share his art with others, and he claims the film industry isn't work, His recent works includes the brands Toyota, AT&T, Chevy, and the feature film WINDSOR.
Matt Brundige - Producer/Editor
Whether it’s the creative concept or the captured piece, Matt continually pushes to make sure we’re delivering the highest quality work to our clients. This passion for great storytelling has led him around the world. Matt has filmed and edited successful campaigns for clients from New York to LA, and everywhere in between. He has gathered a variety of shooting and editing experience while working with Fossil, Reel FX Creative Studios, Lindblad Expeditions/National Geographic, HGTV and The Cooking Channel. He has edited an array of commercials for companies such as Fossil and Gatorade, as well as several animated shorts and the opening to Disney’s “The Wild.” Most recently he has assumed the role of Lead Editor for original programming on such shows as Cool Pools and Chuck's Eat The Street. He attended film school at Full Sail University in Winter Park, Florida.