After their 2013 short film “Here and Now” was selected by Ron Howard as the winner of Canon’s “Project Imaginat10n” film contest, producers Abigail Spencer, Josh Pence, Justin Allen and director Julian Higgins are reteaming on a new short film titled “Winter Light,” which will star Raymond J. Barry (“Justified”), Vincent Kartheiser (“Mad Men”), Q’orianka Kilcher (“The New World”), Michael Bofshever (“United 93”) and Pence (“The Social Network”).
Adapted by screenwriter Wei-Ning Yu from a short story by bestselling author James Lee Burke, “Winter Light” is a modern-day revisionist Western set against the sweeping backdrop of the snow-covered Montana wilderness.
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Story follows the escalating battle of wills between reclusive college professor Roger Guidry (Barry) and two hunters (Kartheiser and Pence) who trespass on his property. As it becomes harder to distinguish between the hunter and the hunted, Roger must choose what kind of man he will ultimately be.
“Winter Light” is produced by Innerlight Films, which Spencer co-founded with director/producer Duke Johnson (“Anomalisa”). The film is financed by Prelude Pictures Chairman Mark Koch (“Lost in Space”) and his partner Steve Dunkle, as well as co-executive producers Julie and Chad Smith.
The Montana Film Commission, Pasadena Arts Council, Lodger Films and Cinelicious have also thrown their support behind the project, which is currently in production in Missoula, Montana.
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“Winter Light” will be shot on 35mm Kodak film by award-winning cinematographer Andrew Wheeler, while Erika Walters handled production design.
Higgins is a Los Angeles-based filmmaker and graduate of the prestigious American Film Institute who won the 2011 Student Academy Award gold medal for his thesis film “Thief.” On the strength of that film, Emmy-winning director and producer Greg Yaitanes mentored Higgins during the eighth season of Fox’s long-running drama series “House.” Higgins’ relationship with Yaitanes led to his television directing debut – at the age of 26 – with one of the final episodes of the series.
Spencer is an actress best known for her roles in Sam Raimi‘s “Oz: The Great and Powerful” and the AMC series “Mad Men” and “Rectify.” She’ll soon be seen in Shawn Levy‘s WB comedy “This Is Where I Leave You” and the John Travolta movie “The Forger.”