Based on the award-winning short film that is still screening in festivals nationwide, the feature film Acid Test follows Jenny as she turns 18 and grapples with what it means to be an adult in the early 90's. Steeped in the aesthetic of punk music, we watch Jenny discover a new aggressively feminist perspective inspired by the Riot Grrrl – girls in punk – movement. Along the way, she experiments with LSD and begins to question all of the rules and truths she's lived by her whole life. Set against the backdrop of the 1992 Presidential Election and themes of civic engagement, Jenny launches a rebellion against her family, against the patriarchy her father represents, and tumbles into a new sense of self. It is based on unfortunately-true events!
The feature film is an activist film. With a female lead of Mexican descent, our story showcases much-needed diversity on screen as part of a need in the film industry and film market for more diverse content. We are also showcasing that diversity behind the camera: as a female writer director, it is vital to me to be part of the changes needed in my industry in hiring women and people of color in crew positions.
Houston has an amazing depth of talent in the filmmaking community and I am dedicated to promoting and utilizing our local resources and showcase their talents. All of our crew and almost all of our talent is Houston-based. Among them are our producers are Eddie Rodriguez (Rich Kids), Anna Tran (Lion Killer), and new-to-film Hillary Felice. Our DP is Dan Mohr. Our lead is Houston-born Juliana DeStefano, her father will be played by local actor Brian Thornton, and her mother will be played by local actor Mia Ruiz. Her best friend is the local actor Mai Le and her love-interest is the Texas-born Reece Everett Ryan.
We are also partnering with Houston Community College (HCC) where I teach filmmaking full-time to help develop and train Houston's talent pool by offering students the opportunity to train on our feature film set to gain valuable professional experience while also earning credits toward their degrees.
Because of these goals, we are being fiscally sponsored by Fresh Arts making all contributions charitable donations and tax-deductible to the fullest extent!
In order to maximize your tax deduction and our fundraising efforts, we are looking for contributions in the $500, $1,000, $5,000, and $10,000 level.
Donations over $1,000 will receive an Associate Producer credit and will be invited to the friends and family screening and receive a secret link to the film while it’s in festival submission. We are following Producer’s Guild of America guidelines for Executive Producer credit, and awarding that to donors who give at least $25,000. Of course ANY amount is much appreciated! Donations over $50 will receive the final film after festivals.
We are also looking for in-kind donations as well – food, equipment, artwork, music, airlines miles – to help defray our filmmaking costs.
We've already raised over $40,000 in production funds through our other fiscal sponsor, From the Heart Productions and we are looking to raise an additional $20,000 for post-production! Production starts June 1st for about 20 days.
Please look into whether your company participates in a matching grant program. Large corporations and even smaller companies will often match an employee’s donation to a 501c3 100% or sometimes even 200%!
Please help spread the word! Share on social media! When sharing the fundraising page, here’s a suggested post:
"Join the rebellion and support activist filmmaking by making a tax-deductible donation to the debut feature film of female writer/director Jenny Waldo: Acid Test! #womeninfilm #diversityinfilm #activistfilmmaking #momsinfilm #riotgrrrl"
There's a moment in the script where Jenny sees a poster for Oberlin College that shows the Earth from space and the tagline "Think one person can change the world? So do we." It's a moment from my own life that led me to go to Oberlin and a mantra I've held in my life since graduating. In some small way, the making of Acid Test is part of changing the film production world, and it is my hope and belief that the finished movie will have an impact of social change once it reaches its audience.
Please join me in rebellion by becoming Acid Test's Donor. Your help is needed to spread the word and change the way we make movies while we change the movies we make!