Origin Stories...

You may or may not know the origin behind where the idea for THE BURIAL came from...

Let me tell you.

When I unwind, I like to be around nature.  Five summers ago, I was home in Iowa for a family visit.  I had been living in Los Angeles for approximately five years at that point, and I relished the chance to take a break from the rat race that is LA.

Since I was home, that meant taking a trip to the NE corner of the State, to see my father, and to absorb the natural beauty of the Driftless Region, the Mississippi River Valley.  Specifically, this meant a trip to a place that I have returned to on many occasions: the Effigy Mounds National Monument.

Over the years, I have returned to the Effigy Mounds to check in with nature.  I go there to pay respects to those that came before us on this land we call home.  I go to pay respects to the sacred earth; to think about my place in the world, in time, in the universe.  

One day, five years ago, I went to the Effigy Mounds again, as I had so many times since I was a child.

On that day, I stood at the end of Fire Point, on the edge of a cliff that towers above the great Mississippi River below.  Next to me was a nine feet tall burial mound, over a thousand years old.  I felt that I was one with the sacred space.  I listened to the wind.  I said thank you.

Then something odd happened.  A disturbance.

I heard music.  And laughing.  And gleeful shrieking. 

I looked over the edge of the cliff, and in the waters of the river below were two speed boats, filled with young people.  They were drinking and carousing, having a raucously good time.  I stood there, caught between two worlds, thousands of years apart.  In the juxtaposition of those two moments in time, the seed of the movie was born.

Two years later, I would write the first draft of the screenplay for THE BURIAL.

And the story continues...