Chicago Filmmakers Turn Cameras On The Smoking Guns

Amarok Productions turn their cameras to the smoking guns to reveal a tragic take on how violence affects children.
script profile pic sm
script profile pic sm
Spread the Word
Listed Under

* Inner City
* Violence
* Youth Guidance
* Film

* Movies
* Entertainment

* US

Jan. 15, 2013 - PRLog -- Fresh off the success of its feature film I HEART SHAKEY ( - which was released in theaters this summer and is currently in Redbox ( - Amarok Productions tackles the tough subject of how violence is robbing the innocence of our youth in its next film entitled THE PAINTER (  The short film, commissioned by entrepreneur Emil Arab and funded partly by Columbia College’s Faculty Development Grant, takes a glimpse inside the life of a child artist affected by the violence…a child whose secret artwork reveals a tragic take on how violence affects children.

Amarok has been working with two highly-regarded organizations in Chicago: UCAN ( and Youth Guidance ( both with missions to help children in high-risk neighborhoods.  The filmmaking enterprise will also offer children from UCAN and Youth Guidance the opportunity to shadow cast and crew during production and take part in the film’s making. A behind-the-scenes crew will document the entire process.  

With violent deaths in Chicago reaching alarming levels, Writer/Director Kevin Cooper (and full-time faculty member at Columbia College Chicago) explains why he felt compelled to act.  “Children in neighborhoods where there is regularly violence do not have a choice but to live in a ‘war zone’ fighting for survival, often being scarred along the way.  I feel a responsibility to stand up and add my voice to the choir of people trying to help the most innocent of the victims by bringing awareness to this problem.”   Producer DeAnna Cooper adds, “There are very few things as pressing as the violence that plagues Chicago.  So many children suffer from the violence and need help.”  

“Youth Guidance is honored to partner with Amarok Productions on THE PAINTER, a short film that creatively and poignantly shines a spotlight on the devastating impact of youth violence,” said Youth Guidance CEO, Michelle Adler Morrison. “The opportunity to audition for roles in this important project provided the youth participating in Youth Guidance programs with a transforming, once-in-a-lifetime experience they aren’t soon to forget.”

UCAN’s continuing vision and mission – to build strong youth and families through compassionate healing, education and empowerment - make their partnership a perfect fit.  “We love the passion of De and Kevin for their film and the desire to tell the story of those impacted by violence, and are thrilled that our youth had the opportunity to become involved,” said Claude Robinson, UCAN EVP External Affairs & Diversity.

This short project is a welcomed excursion from Kevin and DeAnna’s background in feature length filmmaking.  Prior to moving back to the Midwest, the director-producer/ husband-wife team worked for years within the studio system in Hollywood and will be putting all of their resources into creating an effective call to action.

Press are invited to visit the set during production from January 22nd until January 26th at Columbia College Chicago’s state-of-the-art Media Production Center sound stages.  Please contact Marquee Media and Marketing to arrange a set visit or interview those involved.

Amarok has a slate of Chicago-based films that it is currently developing and preparing for production.  FINN, a film about living life to its fullest and, yes, catching the perfect Midwestern wave, will reunite the Coopers and the star of I HEART SHAKEY, Rylie Behr.  Amarok’s co-owner and producer DeAnna Cooper ( will also be producing the upcoming feature film PRECIOUS METTLE, which is scheduled to shoot in Chicago in March.  


A boy merely 12 years old lives with unending violence in his world.  He is a young soldier whose only form of survival is to create art to escape the reality of death.  Abandoned, this boy is on his own in life.  He faces another day of the police scanner and sirens blaring with his coffee cup and paint brush in hand, surrounded by countless newspaper articles on the violence that confronts him daily.  When a faceless interviewer asks him how he is able to survive, he reveals that he has seen the violence longer than he has been able to hold a brush.  Putting his art and soul into every brush stroke, we get a glimpse inside and understand that to give our youth back their lives we must stop the killing.  It’s time to step inside his art…It’s time for action.  Are you ready?
Email:*** Email Verified
Tags:Inner City, Violence, UCAN, Youth Guidance, Film
Industry:Movies, Entertainment
Location:United States
Account Email Address Verified     Account Phone Number Verified     Disclaimer     Report Abuse
Marquee Media and Marketing News
Daily News
Weekly News

Like PRLog?
Click to Share