or by mailing an order form to Project AWARE PO Box 1244, Saco ME 04072 (contact us by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org for a form) You may also contact James Harmon at Sanford High School and stop by there to pick up a copy.
Look for the April’s Heart movie website in December. The site will include ordering information, tons of resources including educational materials, curriculums, and down-loadable Public Service Announcements. Until then enjoy the trailer and information below. Thank you for your interest!
April’s Heart is based on real-life stories from a suburban high school. The characters in the movie are survivors … like their real-life counterparts in the cast and crew … like the young people who dared to put their stories on paper, and like teenagers everywhere who balance their immense challenges with unbelievable strengths.
The Safe Schools Healthy Students Initiative, Sanford (Maine) High School Film Club, Project AWARE and Gum Spirits Productions led a year-long production effort to create April’s Heart. The goals included empowered young people, safer schools and healthier teens. Ultimately over 200 students, staff and community members were directly involved, making it one of the largest after school programs the town has ever seen.
Project AWARE and Gum Spirits provided support to young people in 4 main areas: overall coordination and production; presentations to the student body and staff; training for cast and crew; and finally filming and post production for 4 Public Service Announcements and the 35 minute dramatic movie short, April’s Heart.
The Film Club started with some powerful questions: Do we really know teenagers? What is behind the faces we see every day? How are kids hurting? To get answers they offered, through fliers and presentations, each and every young person in school an opportunity to submit anonymous true stories as ideas for concepts, story lines and ultimately the script.
In addition, young people volunteered for a specific area of interest in the movie making process, ranging from acting to crew. Ultimately 22 young people trained with professionals to crew the movie and close to 100 actors attended 2 castings at the school. By the end of the project, April’s Heart included 120 cast and crew, many additional youth supporters and at least 3 school classes supported by their teachers … plus the outpouring of community support through donated time, money, food and more.
“April’s Heart is important because it reflects everyone. We normally do not know how a person really is until we see it from a different view … people make assumptions which may not be true (when) you see through the eyes of that person. In the movie, April is pretty much the eyes of everyone. “
“The movie will make people think differently … it will open their minds more to understanding how they should get to know someone before they judge them. The movie (story) takes place in every high school and all the characters reflect someone (we are or know) in a certain way. Everyone here (on set) including myself can relate to a character(s) in this movie – and (people who watch this movie) will get a different view and (ultimately) they will learn from each of those characters.”
Salinda Dong, Co-Director of April’s Heart and a senior at Sanford High School