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Kelsey Fox, Home Grown
Original TV Pilot
Primary Advisor, Oliver Thornton; Secondary Advisor, Candace Moore
Home Grown is a 30 minute tragicomedy pilot about two queer/genderqueer, self-proclaimed progressives who flunk out of city life and wind up back home in their neo-liberal town. Comedy ensues when the pair try to bring their old home up to date with their newly claimed identities, and when supposedly aligned ideologies clash.
Vesal Stoakley, Shelter in Place
Primary Advisor, Jim Burnstein; Secondary Advisor, Markus Nornes
Shelter In Place, set in 2009, takes us vividly into the historic South Side Chicago community of Bronzeville, the 'Harlem of the Midwest.' Based loosely on Vesal's personal experiences with diversity, violence, and trauma growing up in Chicago, Shelter In Place is a deep dive into the intersectional, racial, and shadow economy dynamics and its decades-long struggle with social violence and PTSD.
Caught in the daily throes of intimate partner violence, mother Debs attempts to keep her daughter Aleks sheltered and on track to finishing high school. Debs and preacher/surrogate father Rev contend with the block; both the rise of the Chicago footwork subculture blowing up across the new mobile social media youth landscape (in iPhone's early days) and Aleks' vulnerable graffiti artist boyfriend Justus, affiliated in the Gangster Disciples' Guttaville faction. Justus' anger, stirred by this place's complex social and structural violence hierarchy, threatens to tear Aleks and Debs further apart in his quest for status and revenge.