Film Courage: Your bio says you are from Indiana. What do you miss about the Midwest?
Robin Bain: My family is from the Midwest, the center or sometimes referred to as the heartland of our country. Most Midwesterners, like most Americans, are good and hard working people.
Film Courage: What are movies to you, why have they played such a big role in your life?
Robin: Movies are my passion and my escape. My favorite films are documentaries and dramas that are about and/or depict real life issues. Exploring and viewing life through the camera lens whether it be my own or a fellow filmmaker inspires me.
Film Courage: How many short films did you make before making your first feature and why was it important to you to make so many short films?
Robin: There are too many to count. I’ve been writing, directing and producing small films and videos for most of my life. I love filmmaking. Just like so many things in life, practice, repetition, persistence and dedication fosters and promotes the skills needed to take your craft to the next level.
Film Courage: You say it was a lifelong dream to write, direct, produce and act in your own feature film which you were able to accomplish with GIRL LOST. How far does this dream go back?
Robin: I decided early on in life for this career path. I’ve been an actress, writer, producer, director, assistant to everyone, a failure and a success.
“Ideally, a first time movie producer is a person who has spent years working their way up the ladder in order to earn the title of producer.”
Film Courage: Why was it important for you to direct GIRL LOST?
Robin: When I wrote the screenplay for GIRL LOST, I wrote it with the intention to direct and produce it myself. It was imperative that I direct the movie to be able to use it as a calling card for future work.
Film Courage: What inspired this story?
Robin: The very human tragedy of sex trafficking as related early on and throughout GIRL LOST.
Film Courage: How personal is this story to you?
Robin: Everything I write becomes very personal and intimate to me as I put my entire heart and soul into my work. I agonize over each and every word in the script. I think about each moment and character in detail and live out the story in my mind to the point where it completely takes over my life for that period of time.
Film Courage: What are some key issues on sex trafficking that the public may not be aware of which you are trying to expose in GIRL LOST?
Robin: The key issue that must be exposed is that each and every girl or boy who ends up in this horrific situation has a unique story.
These stories must be told and must be heard. A real and urgent public awareness of these human tragedies must be presented to the public so that with public awareness there will be demand for change.
Film Courage: Are GIRL LOST and NOWHERELAND the same movie or story?
Robin: Yes, NOWHERELAND was renamed GIRL LOST. This new title was given to the film by the film’s distributor.
Film Courage: The reviews on Amazon that have poured in so far show how deeply the audience has been impacted by your movie. Are you receiving the response you hoped for and what is your reaction to it all?
Robin: I am both honored and humbled by the reactions and responses of the audience.
Film Courage: Prior to GIRL LOST, did you pitch ideas / projects to Hollywood with you attached as director? Do you think that door would have ever opened for you if you hadn’t directed GIRL LOST?
Robin: I’ve been running around Hollywood for over two decades pitching scripts and ideas. I can say without a doubt, that writing, producing and directing GIRL LOST on my own was the only way that I could have made this happen for myself.
Film Courage: Do you feel it is the director’s job to be on set before everyone else?
Robin: I was always the first to arrive and the last to leave while shooting GIRL LOST. Beyond being “my job” to be on time and arrive before the rest of the crew, I wanted to be there early. Shooting movies is exciting. No one could keep me away.
“Educate yourself on the current film market, so that you are aware of what it will take to sell your movie. This is a business and there are certain elements that are necessary for domestic and international sales.”
Film Courage: What did you learn about yourself making this movie?
Robin: I learned that I’m always learning. There is always something to be gained and absorbed in every new experience.
Film Courage: In your acting scenes, do you have another cast or crew member direct you? How do you simultaneously act and direct?
Robin: I directed myself. As the writer, director and creator of the piece, I had a specific vision of what I wanted from each character and each actor. When I stepped into the scenes as an actress, I was able, through years of experience, to slip into that character and deliver the performance that I had envisioned.
Film Courage: We imagine that you had to face a lot of challenges in getting GIRL LOST made… can you take us back to one of the biggest problems you faced making this movie and how you worked through it?
Robin: The biggest challenge was and still is the financing. Making a feature film like this is extremely expensive. A portion of the financing came via a successful Kickstarter campaign, which was also a huge challenge in itself.
Film Courage: Two times when your intuition saved you – in either saying no to something or saying yes to something film related?
Robin: My intuition told me to make GIRL LOST. I knew I had to take action.
My intuition also told me to never give up, even at the most bleak of times.
Film Courage: What do you wish someone had told you when you first started?
Robin: Ideally, a first time movie producer is a person who has spent years working their way up the ladder in order to earn the title of “producer.”
Watch and learn from successful people who are doing the job that you aspire to do.
What do I wish someone had told me when I first started? When I first started, I didn’t listen to anyone. I had to learn by falling flat on my face and getting up and trying again. I don’t think that there was anything anyone could have told me. I was going to do it and that was it.
Film Courage: Is it a mistake for a filmmaker to think about distribution and marketing after they’ve made their movie?
Robin: You must have a solid plan and anticipate the desired outcome before you shoot your film.
Educate yourself on the current film market, so that you are aware of what it will take to sell your movie. This is a business and there are certain elements that are necessary for domestic and international sales.
Draw a road map and be flexible enough to make changes along the way, because inevitably, that will happen.
Film Courage: What was your process for finding distribution for GIRL LOST?
Robin: I’ve been very active promoting the film on social media from its inception. Posting the trailer for the film on Facebook led to a chance introduction to a foreign sales team.
Film Courage: How many places did you contact and in the end what led to final decision?
Robin: When I received the offer to distribute GIRL LOST in North America and The United Kingdom, the decision was very easy to make. I did not hesitate to respond with an enthusiastic “yes!”
Film Courage: Where can we watch GIRL LOST?
Robin: GIRL LOST is currently available on Amazon Prime Video.
Film Courage: How has Hollywood been different than what you’d imagined?
Robin: Hollywood is a tough town. I came here many years ago bright eyed and extremely naïve. Over the years, I’ve learned that you really have to want this in order to survive.
That being said, I wouldn’t change my journey. Through the struggles, the highs, the lows and every other crazy experience and crazy person in between, I’ve emerged stronger and more capable than I ever would have imagined I could be. Had my recent successes happened for me earlier in my life, I wouldn’t have had the life skills and emotional maturity to handle it.
Film Courage: What problem are you currently facing?
Robin: Surviving in this town is a challenge. All I can do is keep grinding and making things happen.
Film Courage: If you could recommend one book on writing or the creative process, which book would it be?
I am unable to recommend any one book specifically on writing or the creative process.
My writing and creative process has developed with me as I have traveled through life, gathering experiences along the way.
I will recommend a book called TNT, The Power Within You by Claude M. Bristol and Harold Sherman. I’ve read it over and over again.
The power of belief is what brought me to this point.
Film Courage: What’s next for you creatively?
Robin: I’m in the midst of production on a feature film that I wrote and am directing called, THE LAST EXORCIST starring Danny Trejo, Rachele Brooke Smith and Terri Ivens and produced by Thriller Films.
Don’t let the name fool you, it’s not your typical horror film in that there is a very dark, psychological component to the story.
I am very excited about this movie.
About Writer, Director and Producer Robin Bain:
Robin Bain wrote, directed and produced the multi-award winning feature film, GIRL LOST, which speaks on the harsh realities of underage prostitution in the United States. GIRL LOST is now available on Amazon Prime from Cinema Epoch.
Bain is currently in production as the writer and director of THE LAST EXORCIST, starring Danny Trejo, Rachele Brooke Smith and Terri Ivens. THE LAST EXORCIST is being produced by Thriller Films and is set for release in late 2018.
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GIRL LOST by Filmmaker Robin Bain – tackles the very real issue of underage prostitution as told through the eyes of a wayward teen. Groomed by her own mother to work in the underbelly of Los Angeles, the young girl struggles to survive in this dark world. Stream GIRL LOST on Amazon Prime Video today.
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