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Sprout is the story of Astrid, a young Guatemalan girl who struggles to keep her faith as she yearns to find resolution to her family’s farming dillema and keep food on the table to survive.

Executive Producers: Evelyn Lorena & Vivian Giourousis
Director: Maris Lidaka
DP: Adam Michael Becker
Producers: Maris Lidaka, Evelyn Lorena, Henry Alberto, Samantha Colicchio
Writers/Screenplay: Evelyn Lorena & Henry Alberto

ASTRID: Evelyn Lorena
FATHER: Sal Lopez
ASHER: Henry Alberto
MARLIESE: Samantha Colicchio

CIFF International Film Festival – Global Shorts 2015

Back Story:
Our writer and lead actress, Evelyn’s family is originally from Guatemala. On one of her trips back, her father sent her to check up on the first piece of land he bought with his earnings. While it was a humble, small plot, she was moved by the efforts of the family occupying the land. They were from a local indigenous tribe and didn’t have much to offer her in terms of hospitality except their gratitude. They had no real running water, sanitariums and were very poor. The food they plotted on the land had trouble growing with the exception of some avocados which they would go on to sell at the local market. When Evelyn sat down to speak to the family, she realized the opportunity to make some income was what they were most grateful for. The matriarch hugged her close, in tears, and said, “Thank you for letting us stay”. This really struck a chord with Evelyn and she began researching rural life in Guatemala. She couldn’t believe how humble and gracious these people were with so little. They seemed to deserve more. Long story short, after much reading and research, Evelyn discovered that many families lived in this way or with worse conditions. One of the contributing factors to this lifestyle came from global and national policies that held-back many of Guatemala’s subsistence farmers. In an effort to materialize something creative and inspiring from this knowledge, Evelyn shared this story with her creative team and the script began to develop. The short was made there after.

About the Making of SPROUT:
Originally we had mapped out our shoot to take place in Guatemala. We were even working closely with the government of Guatemala, a senator and some film commissions to shoot our short. However, due to unforseen budgetary and scheduling conflicts, we had less than a week to allocate an authentic yet affordable outdoor landscape and location. Thankfully the beautiful state of California has many similarities to the Guatemalan landscape and terrain and we were able to shoot here locally. We even found remaining outdoor huts that resembled the very interior architecture and decoration we had in mind! We were also able to highlight the California/Altadena terrain and creatively build the atmosphere needed for Sprout.