Independent Film Focuses on Bringing Strong Female Characters to the Forefront with the reimagining of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.
Jeremy Lipsey understands the need and importance for more roles in the film and television industry for women. He is aware that there are many female superhero characters that have huge followings and recognizes the demand for these at the box office by audiences everywhere. The success, popularity and staying power of movies like Frozen and The Hunger Games have made it clearly evident that the production of films with strong female heroes can and will continue to work. So why are mainstream films failing to produce movies with these specific roles for women?
Writer and director Lipsey wants this to change, and is in the process of setting out to do his part with Wonderland: Retribution, his upcoming film that will feature prominent female roles focusing on the special relationship that exists between sisters. While being the father of two daughters may have served as additional inspiration for creating these characters, it is quite clear that there were other influences that drove him to create such a story.
Wonderland: Retribution, which is Lipsey’s first feature film, is a unique reimagination of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll, and stars Hailley Lauren as Alice, Callan Burkhart as Lacie (Alice’s sister), Tara Elizabeth as Kat, and Valentino as Bobby, all who I had the distinct pleasure of meeting last weekend at MondoCon in Austin, Texas. Lipsey’s Wonderland is a more of a modern horror/thriller take on Alice, and why not with Joss Whedon and Quentin Tarantino having such an impactful influence on him. The film promises to explore over 600 years of English history that will tie in Alice’s family and also integrate Samurai weapons and warrior training. In the story, Alice sets out on a journey to discover her personal connection to Wonderland and her families dark past after the mysterious murder of her best friend.
Like many independent filmmakers, Lipsey has chosen to use Kickstarter to fund his film, allowing fans to play a role in how the movie is made by providing artists the creative freedom to deliver their projects with the original idea or vision, and without the outside input and editorial decisions that may come from a traditional Hollywood project. The Kickstarter launched September 18 with a goal of $150,000, and will only be funded if the campaign reaches that goal.
In an email correspondence with Lipsey (who is from Denver), the director stated how incredible the journey has been so far, and that he and his cast plan on continuing to attend events where they can meet fans and those interested in the film. He also revealed that one of the prizes for fans who contribute to his Kickstarter campaign includes an exclusive graphic novel called Wonderland: Origins 1647, which tells the back story to the movie. He also mentioned that it probably won’t be the last comic book either, as he has over six hundred years of story to tell. In fact, Lipsey hopes that Wonderland will be supported by comic books, short stories, additional films (hopes for a trilogy), a web series, and television show. The film already has a working site where visitors can register for classes for the fall semester of 2015 at Wonderland University.