Frequently Asked Questions (1-9)

1.  Is this a documentary or a narrative film?  

Canopy is a narrative, feature-length film that is based on the screenwriter’s life.  While the screenwriter appears in the Pitch Video, it is only for the purpose of telling the production story to donors, investors, potential collaborators, and potential movie-goers.

2.  What does the title “Canopy” have to do with the movie?

Canopy, in this case, refers to a tree canopy, one that provides shade and shelter from the elements above.  This is the central metaphor of the film in that the protagonist, Okorie, has grown up with lots of advantages and protections not typical of a little Black boy from DC in the 80s.  Theses advantages are being compared to the shade a tree canopy might provide an animal or a habitat.  The central question for Okorie in the film is what to do with all of this shade?  Should he relinquish his position in the shade to labor in the sun and create shelter for others?  Should he follow his heart which may lead him out of the shade into the sun?  Should he stay there in the shade like others expect him to, never venturing out of the safe haven that has been created for him?   Metaphorically, Okorie, the protagonist, explores these questions in the screenplay and soon-to-be film Canopy.

3.   Have the actors in the pitch video been cast for the film roles?

Casting has not yet been determined for any characters except for college-aged/adult Okorie.  The actors in the Pitch Video graciously gave of their time and talent to bring the screenplay to life in a “Script Reading” produced in the summer of 2011.  Thus, they were uniquely positioned to talk about the project when we shot the Pitch Video.  We are eternally grateful for their contribution to the project and will always work closely and supportively with them.  The casting director, the director, and the production staff will make decisions about key roles in the film closer to the commencement of principal photography, and the Pitch Video actors will certainly be considered.

4.  Why were two actors billed as young and old Okorie in the Pitch Video?  Will two actors play adult Okorie in the film?

In the Canopy reading, we needed to distinguish by voice between young, old, and narrator Okorie, as we were not at the time producing the screenplay visually.  So, we had two actors share those parts to create the necessary contrast.  In the film, we will be able to use dress and appearance to distinguish between Okoires of various age and state – so one actor will more easily be able to play all adult Okories.

5.  Is any of the movie shot already?

No.  In the process of raising funds and courting investors we may shoot a trailer, but right now we are raising funds for the full feature with the intention of going into principal photography in late 2012 early 2013.

6. What are the stages of production for a film, and what stage of production are you in?

There are four stages of production: development, pre-production, production, and post-production.  Canopy is presently moving from development into pre-production – essentially from getting the script and the team ready to raising the money to “green-light” the movie.  Click here to see a graphic that briefly summarizes what happens in each stage.

7.  Where will Canopy be filmed?

Right now, most of the film is scheduled to be shot in Atlanta.  Most of the story takes place there, and this is a great time to be making a film in Atlanta.

8.  Am I an investor if I donate to your project?

No.  If you make a gift here, you will be supporting PoMo Griot Productions, which is the production company producing Canopy.  These donations support the company’s ability to pursue investors to fund the film Canopy, and any funds above the operating costs of pursing investors will go to the bottom line of the film budget, but they will not be considered investments.   However, if you are interested in investing, we will start formally courting investors in February of 2012.  Please email canopy@okoriejohnson.net to be considered.

8.  Are my donations tax deductible?

Unfortunately, no.  PoMo Griot is a for-profit LLC.  We are not a 501(c)(3) or a charitable entity.  Sorry.

9.  Do you have a Kickstarter page or another crowd-funding site?

No.  Not yet.  So far, PoMo Griot Productions has done pretty well raising funds without using crowd funding.  Both members of the LLC have fundraising backgrounds and are deploying a variety of strategies for raising the monies necessary to run PoMo Griot Productions.  As a result, we have not yet felt it necessary to negotiate the restrictions and the fees associated with using those services.  This is not to say that we won’t use those services in the future.  But since success with those sites is dependent upon how much traffic you drive to them, we are going to first try driving potential donors to our own site.  This is also not to say that we don’t need your financial support.  This is a very expensive process, and we are doing our best to keep up with productions costs.  So, please do give!

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