“People are formed in struggle. It either kills them or makes them. Sometimes you succeed just by hanging on. That’s what the movie is about.”
When the rent comes due and his bank account has been tapped out, a single father goes to extraordinary lengths to make a life for himself and his young daughter in his working class neighborhood.
“The idea for the movie began during the financial crisis. I knew a lot of people who were having a hard time financially. People were barely getting by and frightened by what the future held. We were all being tested in ways we never imagined. I believe it’s the commitments that we have to one another that give our lives meaning. I wanted to show this in a movie. The goal in writing the screenplay was to document the journey of someone struggling to keep those commitments during the recent economic downturn. I thought the character could be a bit of a loner, a person who spoke through his actions and not his words. His actions would not only define him, they would demonstrate what is most virtuous about the human spirit.
A movie about surviving hardship produced on a low budget seemed appropriate. I felt that a cinéma-vérité style best matched the subject matter. During the actual production I was the “crew.” I was a one man band. It was just me and the actors. One of the inspirations for this crazy notion was an article by this French writer Alexandre Astruc. (The Birth of a New Avant-Barde: La Camera-Stylo 1948) He said something to the effect that in the future the filmmaker will be just like an author. They’ll be using a camera like an author uses a pen. That idea was really exciting. I took it as a challenge. There were great things and frustrating things about making a movie this way. It was a real challenge physically and creatively but I believe that I captured something unique and very intimate.
I made the movie because I was interested in showing the journey of a character whose spirit was unbroken despite the many obstacles they’ve been through. My main character is neither naive or disillusioned, nor is he looking to place blame. He’s just someone who just wants to take care of the people he loves and who finds a deep satisfaction in it. The idea from the Talmud, “Save one person and you save the world,” was buzzing in my head throughout every phase of the production.”
Firelane Digital Ltd. presents Working Poor
Written & Directed by Steven Bozga
Produced by Carolyn Hepburn
With Thaddeus Schneider and Caroline Whitney Smith
Music by David Buchs
Sound Design by Bjorn Arntsen
Steven Bozga is a writer and director whose debut film Love Like Blood won several festival awards. He also works as a Final Cut Pro trainer and as an Assistant Editor. Steven has written and directed short videos and commercials for companies as diverse as Apple and The Community Food Resource Center. He is a published writer and has been active in the independent film community for years. Steven is currently working on his next feature screenplay which is a comedy about modern dating culture and gentrification in New York City. He was born in Manhattan and raised in the boroughs.
Carolyn Hepburn is an Emmy Award nominated Producer. She is the executive producer of Weiner, winner of the 2016 Sundance US Documentary Grand Jury Prize and co-producer of Life, Animated, which won the 2016 Sundance US Documentary Directing Award. In 2016, she also co-produced Chicken People, which was released theatrically by Samuel Goldwyn Films. In 2015, Carolyn produced 3½ Minutes, Ten Bullets, winner of the 2015 Sundance Special Jury Prize for Social Impact and shortlisted for the 2016 Academy Award®; co-produced Indian Point which premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival; and co-executive produced the short film The 100 Years Show. She executive produced Art and Craft, which was shortlisted for the 2015 Academy Award®. In 2013, Carolyn was the line producer for two films that premiered at the Sundance Film Festival: God Loves Uganda, shortlisted for the 2014 Academy Award®, and Gideon’s Army, winner of Sundance’s Best Editing Award.
Thaddeus Schneider first worked with Steven Bozga in the award winning independent feature film Love Like Blood. Since then Thaddeus has appeared in speaking roles in Law and Order and Rescue Me.
Caroline Whitney Smith is a Los Angeles based actress who is originally from New York. She has appeared on Criminal Minds, Revenge, Southland and How I Met Your Mother. She previously worked with Steven and Thaddeus in Love Like Blood. Recent work includes the new media series Her Story, www.herstoryshow.com, which premiered in January 2016.
David Buchs is a Brooklyn based composer. His work has appeared on the networks E!, CBS, Oxygen, Discovery, CMT, MTV and the BBC. David has also composed and performed original music for Levi’s, Habitat For Humanity and LearnVest. With Anapauo he just released his first ambient album – VISIONS, which has been featured on the Daily Ohm’s “The Yoga of Money” meditation videos.
Sound designer, Bjorn Arntsen worked with Stanley Kubrick on the set of Eyes Wide Shut, is an accomplished musician and has published a novel, “Slow But Sudden.”