Alumna Lara Gallagher '14 Wins SFFILM's Westridge Grant And Signs Acquisition Deal with O-Scope
BY Felix van Kann, December 13, 2019
2019 comes to an exciting end for alumna Lara Gallagher '14. Each Other's Mother, a feature project to be written, directed and produced by her was selected as one of the five winners of the Fall 2019 SFFILM's Westridge Grant and will receive $20,000 in development funding as a screenwriting grant from the organization. Additionally, her debut feature, Clementine, was recently picked up by Oscilloscope Laboratories and will run in theatres in 2020.
Each Other’s Mother follows a girl who, after getting her period for the first time at a remote resort on the Oregon coast, discovers a coven of maids harvesting her virgin blood.
“Awarded twice annually, the SFFILM Westridge Grants are one of the few U.S. sources of grant support for narrative features in the development phase. The grants target US-based filmmakers whose films take place primarily in the States and which focus on social issues and questions of our time,” according to Filmmaker Magazine.
In SSFILM’s official press release, the jury commented: “What stood out to us were the beautiful and striking ways in which these five narratives artfully tackle important social concerns of our time with nuance. We were particularly moved by the range of emotional landscapes featured here, including lyrical and textured musings on the past and present, and what it means to come of age. From high-stakes dilemmas and sibling camaraderie in the midst of gentrification to quiet moments of reflection and meditative musings on the unraveling of life, the jury found each of these five remarkable stories uniquely impactful and stirring.”
Extending Gallagher’s latest success, her debut feature, Clementine, will come to theatres in 2020 after it was recently picked up by O-Scope. The film tells the story of anguished Karen who, reeling from a one-sided breakup, flees Los Angeles for her ex’s idyllic lake house in the Pacific Northwest. There, she becomes entangled with a mysterious, alluring younger woman, whom she cannot seem to resist. Equal parts psychological thriller and sexual coming-of-age story, Clementine is a tense rumination on who to love and how to let go. The film premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival and recently won awards for best cinematography and best narrative feature at the BendFilm Festival.
Commenting on the acquisition, Gallagher said: “I'm thrilled to be partnering with Oscilloscope, a company I’ve long admired that has been behind so many of my favorite films and filmmakers. To count Clementine among their slate of beautifully considered films is more than I could have hoped for when making this deeply personal story in the wilds of Oregon.”
Lara Jean Gallagher is a writer and director originally from rural Pennsylvania. Her work focuses on small towns, dysfunctional families, and the kind of humor and relationships that are only possible when everything else is screwed up. Her shorts and music videos have screened at SXSW, Palm Springs Shortfest, Mill Valley Film Festival, Portland International, DC Shorts, and online via Pitchfork, Spin, Rolling Stone, and NPR, among others. Gallagher earned her Directing MFA from Columbia University and was named one of IFP's 2015 Emerging Storytellers. She is currently living in Portland, Oregon and is in post-production on Clementine.