Tango on the Balcony, a short film about Veterans and PTSD
“TANGO ON THE BALCONY” is a narrative short film about Johnny, an Iraq war Veteran who wrestles with post traumatic stress and the transition to civilian life. Johnny is tormented by a constant hyper-vigilance and insomnia, and the lingering questions of his past actions in combat.
“TANGO ON THE BALCONY” will be shot in New York City in September, 2015. The film will be approximately 15 minutes long and is intended for festival release.
Unlike other films of the war fatigue genre, “TANGO ON THE BALCONY” seeks to avoid cliché representations of Veterans, and portray some of the real issues faced by those transitioning to civilian life.
The goal is to create a film that will be authentic and as close to the Veteran experience of transition as possible in order to raise awareness about Post Traumatic Stress.
This is a non-political agenda, being neither for nor against the recent wars, but more of a call for awareness of the epidemic of PTSD challenges faced by Veterans that civilians need to become aware of. The film will also touch on the losses of the Iraqi people.
WHY WE’RE MAKING THIS FILM
Although we’re making this film to raise awareness about Veterans challenged by PTSD, it is also a film for civilians. How we embrace our Veterans affects our society and reflects our moral code. Understanding the trauma of our returning Veterans is essential for healing and dispelling the stigmas associated with PTSD. This is one of the most important stories of our time.
Our goal on Rocket Hub is to raise $50,000 to produce “Tango” and complete the film by the end of the year for festival submissions. The production will attempt to involve U.S. Veterans and service members as cast and/or crew wherever possible. Please see below for more detail on the budget.
June 2015 is PTSD awareness month. During our campaign we will be releasing infographics describing post traumatic stress, statistics, links to articles and other media on this event page, Twitter and Instagram, in order to raise awareness on this issue. We will also be holding script readings of “Tango” in New York City, open to all.
Minos Papas has been researching post traumatic stress for the last three years in preparation for the production of this short, as well as a feature film on the same subject: “The Divide” (working title – screenplay currently in development). Papas has worked closely with Michael Day, a veteran writer and filmmaker to develop Tango on the Balcony and The Divide. He has also been actively involved with the Patton Veterans Project’s I WAS THEREfilm workshops for veterans and military families coping with service-related stress. As an instructor in the workshop, Papas has had the opportunity to work closely with veterans and servicemembers coping with transition and post-traumatic stress.
Our total budget for the production is $50,000. In addition to all the usual filmmaking expenses (camera, lights, lenses, locations, cast, crew, insurance, food, water, vehicle rentals, festival submissions), we will be doing the following to make this film stand out with high production value, and fulfill our mission to tell the story of Veterans and PTSD:
- Hiring and casting Vets, when possible, and paying them a professional rate;
- building the right set for the main location in the film–Johnny’s room;
- employing the use of special effects for the hyper-vigilance scenes;
- recording a live quartet for the score; and
- hiring a highly skilled sound designer to create the experience of over-stimulation included in PTSD.
We are giving this fifteen minute movie the same treatment as a feature film, and we believe this will help set it apart, and widen its reach in the festival circuit.
Please consider supporting this project financially, or by spreading the word. We welcome any feedback our questions. Contact us here. THANK YOU.