BOXCAR takes you back to 1987, the same year Margaret Thatcher held her famous Tory Speech. Like our times, this period is marked by an increasing hatred and intolerance. At the same time, the two gay teenagers Austin and Harley dream of finding a safe haven.
The multi award winning script BOXCAR is written by David-Matthew Barnes (1970) an American author and screenwriter. The film will mark Haver’s international debut and brings us to rural California. Unable to attend their high school dance together, Austin and Harley decide to skip Homecoming and seek refuge in an abandoned boxcar. There, they dream of escaping the ultra conservative small town they live in, hoping to discover a place where they can exist and love without fear.
The script already won numerous international awards, including Best Script at the Los Angeles Television, Script and Film Festival and Best Script at New Renaissance Film Festival. It was at this festival that Barnes and Haver met. Haver was there to screen MY PIECE OF HAPPINESS, a film that eventually won “Best Actress”(Hetty Heyting).
“When I read Boxcar for the first time, I knew that this was the film I wanted to do next. The stunning scenery, the poetic dialogue and the two main characters had an immediate appeal. Like them, I too had to find out that not fitting in has nothing to do with the time or place you are living in. It is about whether you can accept yourself the way you are or not. Boxcar is an emotional and touching story, with a universal central theme, the hope to discover a place where you can exist and love without fear. A place we all hope to find…”
“After careful consideration I have decided to set the story in 1987. Lately, the 80’s have celebrated a revival in television series and movies. And mainly they capture the optimism, the innocence and the excitement of this period of time. But the 80’s also show a lot of similarities to the darker sides of our time. On the one hand there was economical growth and low unemployment. On the other hand there was, due to immigration, a growing social discomfort. Churches and other social institutes started to spread a conservative moral actively defending traditional family values and condemning homosexuality and pornography. In that perspective, it’s more than just aesthetically interesting to travel back to this period.”
“The film will be shot at night, under an almost full moon, causing an uncomfortable and surreal look. Coyotes are howling in the background, while city lights dance in the distance. Actors are filmed up close, creating an intense feeling.”
This is a universal story of love and the hope of finding a place where you can exist and love without fear. But it is also a story about self-acceptance and learning to live your life in an environment marked by an increasing intolerance and hatred.
The 15-minutes short film will be produced by Kupenda Films and Revolver Amsterdam. Raymond van der Kaaij (co-producer of LOVE & FRIENDSHIP, starring Kate Beckinsale) and Coen Haver will act as Producers, with Haver also taking the director’s chair.
BOXCAR is planned to be shot November 2017. Its premiere is planned for March 2018.
David Matthew Barnes
Raymond van der Kaaij