By now most people that are interested in Bali have seen the Julia Roberts movie Eat, Pray, Love. While probably the most high-profile movie to ever feature Bali in such length, lots of real Bali enthusiasts left feeling like the movie didn’t totally represent the Bali that they have come to know over the years. Personally, I have to agree but it’s Hollywood and realism often takes a back seat to great shots and convenient storylines. A new short film is in the process of being created though and I am very excited that it will show a side of Bali to the world that has yet to be seen by the Hollywood masses. This is Meeting Made in Bali.
I’ll be perfectly honest, this project is coming from a friend of mine, Mike Pohorly. After learning a bit about the project though I can confidently say that I would still be sharing it with all of you even if it wasn’t a friend’s project. Mike sent me over a copy of the script a couple months ago and asked if I could take a look at it and also fact-check things and see if everything was accurate on the Balinese side of things. It isn’t a terribly long script, but I still found that I wasn’t able to put it down until I reached the end.
Meeting Made in Bali focuses on a young Balinese kid who goes by “Max”. After having a falling out with his family in the village, Max goes to Kuta and becomes a taxi driver, making money and trying his best to be a young, self-sufficient Balinese living away from home for the first time – something that many young Balinese will be able to relate to. When a foreigner steps off the plane and offers Max a good deal of money for driving him for the day he accepts quickly, only to realize that he will have to go back to the one place he would like to avoid the most – his village.
Without giving too much of the story away, I can say that I was very pleased with the way everything unfolded in the script and can’t wait to see it on film. Mike has experience shooting Hollywood films so I have no doubt that the cinematography will be excellent while the project is still small and local enough to keep it from becoming just another mindless studio movie. When Meeting Made hits the film festivals it could be the first real glimpse that the rest of the world gets of the Bali that we know and love.
So in the spirit of it being a community based project, donations are being accepted to help fund the production of the film. Kickstarter.com is being used, which is a fundraising site for these types of projects. Basically, if you do decide to contribute, you will only be charged on June 30th and only if the project makes it's goal, as it is all or nothing funding. Your contribution gets you more than just a feeling of helping the movie go into production and depending on how much you contribute you can receive things like a DVD or Bluray copy of the movie and even a “Thank You” in the credits of the movie.
So make sure to check out the trailer to hear Mike and the others that are involved in the project talk about their hopes and aspirations for the film. I will be in contact with them all throughout the making of the film so if anyone is interested in following updates of the making of Meeting in Bali then please use the Contact section of this site to learn more about how you can get connected with this project as it unfolds.