The award winning film maker Matthew Marshall has a busy month of March with filming his dramatic short film Malicious Attack which centres on the issue of Bullying in high school. As is a theme in Marshall’s work he does not shying away from the tough issues and hot topics.
This newest indie film by Marshall takes a twist on the traditional narrative of bullying. “At its heart it is a ‘good girl gone bad’ due to being bullied” says Marshall. The bully of the story Savannah (played by Elina Lattanzio) not only bullies the “outcast” Raven, the “pregnant teen” Sara and the “immigrant” Linda, but also your run of the mill sweet “good girl” Naomi (Katie Ostojic). The story gives lots of opportunity to discuss the issue of bullying and the reactions of those that are bullied. “Each of these characters has a different reaction and response to the bullying they experience”, Marshall adds.
When talking about the issue of bully much of the cast of Malicious Attack relates in some way. Starting with the Films director & Writer Matthew Marshall. “I think we all have seen bullying in some form or another regardless of our ages. Everyone knows someone who has been bullied. It happens every day and it affects everyone”, says Marshall. The films Production manager and co-producer Corrinne Wood brings even a more personal aspect to the film. “Having first hand witnessed bullying when I was younger, makes this film mean a lot to me. It has been an incredible journey, with an amazing cast and crew”, says Wood. But the issue of bullying goes beyond the creative team. It is at the core of the people playing the roles. Marshall’s cast for the film is made up of mostly teenagers or students who have just moved on to post-secondary studies recently and have a very real perspective on the issue from a high school level. “They get the issue and are or have been witness to the issue, some even firsthand”. Katie Ostojic, the film’s lead Naomi, offered these words about what teens need to know. “If you’re being bullied, you’re never alone and even though it can be scary to come forward, it’s always good to talk to someone you can trust. If you don’t have anyone you trust in your life there are many helplines available, surround yourself in positive people and healthy environments”. Morgan Flanagan who plays Macey, Naomi’s friend in the film offered these words, “bullying is something that touches home for everyone, and is a problem that should be faced head on. I hope this production can bring to light some of the issues people are experiencing”. The film’s bully Lattanzio has her figure of the pulse of the issue and the how it plays itself out in the movie. “This film is an excellent depiction of the culture that surrounds bullying, particularly in the school system. In spite of the numerous opportunities for different characters to intervene in the situation and stop Naomi’s persecution, she is ultimately left to endure the struggle alone. The changes that her character undergoes throughout the film are an unfortunate reality for many victims of bullying” says Lattanzio. Tinadra Edwards plays Sara a pregnant teen who endures Savannah bullying feels she understands what her character is going through. ”I relate to what Sara goes through because I see it in the real world. not only in a High School environment but also in day to day life outside fo school” Says Edwards. April Booth who plays the role of Raven which is one of the girls that gets bullied offered this, “I really believe this film shows the extremes of bullying and what can happen if the bullied don’t speak up. In personal experience, I know the fear that can come with exposing bullies, but a lot worse can happen if you remain silent,” says Booth. Dina Jasim who plays Linda, am immigrant who is bullied in the film offered her words on her experience with the issue and because of that her desire to be a part of the film. “I have seen people around me struggle with the effects of bullying in their lives. It is because of that I had the desire to be part of this film. I have a hope that through this film we can help bring a light to the issue of bullying as well as I can gain a better personal understand of what those who have been victims of bullying have gone through” says Jasim.
The short Film is about bullying and is being produced and directed Matthew Marshall the co-owner of by m & s Marshall Production, in association With IME films. The cast and crew has six filming dates during the second half of March in various locations around the area including London, Chatham and St Thomas.
Malicious Attack is about a 30 minute dramatic short film that focuses on the issue of bullying. The story that follows Naomi Spencer a teenager girl who is pushed to her limits by several girls at her High School who make her the target of their attacks. The relentless attacks come from three teenagers, Savannah White, and her friends. Naomi’s best friend Macey Madison tries to find ways to help Naomi expose the bullying, but Naomi is unwilling to come forward. The Attacks on Naomi continue until she is reaches a breaking point.
The cast is made up of people from the London, St Thomas and Chatham area of South-Western Ontario and includes; Katie Ostojic, Morgan Flanagan, Elina Lattanzio, Marley Cabral, Helena Rose, Dina Jasim, Aaliyah Paul, Judy Cormier, Corina Leatherdale, Kailey Dennis, Tiandra Edwards, Ian James Smith, April Booth, Mallaidh Pouti, Mary Ellen Herder, Lesley Chapman, Jamie Rainbird, Kayla Hope Felker, Elizabeth Harden, Jerry Ziler, Melissa Ramos, Brooklyn Pritchard, Kyra Ramos, Kendal Cabral, and Rob Herder
The film can be found on IMDb at http://www.imdb.com/title/tt6156436/combined