THE MIDWAY POINT

Broward / 2024 / 87 min / English / Drama

Jake, a high schooler on the autistic spectrum, feels disillusioned with the world around him. When he meets Alice, a brash and outgoing classmate, he begins to experience the world in other ways. Little does Jake know that, secretly, Alice may have more in common with him than he could ever imagine.

DIRECTOR: Lucca is an award-winning 21-year-old Brazilian-born filmmaker based out of South Florida. He has been producing skits, animations and videos since the age of eight.

At 16, his debut short, ‘Parkland: Stories from the Survivors’, was screened at four film fests nationwide, and his latest horror short, “Silhouette,” was selected at over eight film fests across the U.S. and Canada. Additionally, his awards include two National YoungArts Foundation Merit prizes, a Scholastic Art and Writing Award, and a Best Student Short award at the Miami Short Film Festival.

Now, at age 20, he has written and directed his first ever feature, starring, among others, Thora Birch (‘American Beauty’), Wes Studi (‘The Last of the Mohicans,’ ‘Heat’), and Julie Benz of ‘Dexter’ fame.

DIRECTOR STATEMENT: High school was a battle for me; having been diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder at the age of 12, I was always surrounded with the notion that I was somehow “different.” I could never deeply connect with my peers, afraid of being seen as awkward. I was seeing friends starting romantic relationships and hosting parties, while I was stuck in my bedroom making videos.

One morning, during my junior year of high school in Florida, I was riding to school in a depressive haze, earphones plugged, when I suddenly pictured a scene from a film with this exact concept. I instantly thought to myself: “I could make something really special out of this!”  I was tired of seeing modern-day coming-of-age films made by much older directors with no knowledge of my current generation. I also knew it was possible to make a heartfelt coming-of-age drama with a low budget, which further compelled me in wanting to make the film as soon as possible.

I spent the first three months of the COVID-19 pandemic writing the script, loosely based on experiences I’d had in high school. I then spent another year pitching it to everyone and anyone I could find with even the slightest connection to the film industry, with little to no success. Then, through complete coincidence, I bumped into a series of producers through mutual connections. Those connections eventually snowballed, and I suddenly found myself in the director’s chair within less than a year.

In writing The Midway Point, I explored themes of loneliness and alienation, both being important themes within the digital age, and something which I felt was underrepresented in stories featuring Generation Z. So much of our generation is surrounded by a constant sea of noise, disruption, and mistrust of the world, that I felt compelled to make a story featuring characters who, despite all the odds, find a way out into a better world.

Contact: luccagvieira@gmail.com

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CREDITS

DIRECTOR(S): Lucca Vieira
SCREENWRITER(S): Lucca Vieira
PRODUCER(S): Christina Eliopoulos, Carolina Brasil, Daemon Hillin
CAST: Sean Ryan Fox, Catharine Daddario, Thora Birch, Julie Benz, Wes Studi

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