Two alumni ready for next big jump in film industry

Grace McPhillips ’03 and Colin Havey ’10 are raising funds to get two different new filming projects off the ground.


Grace McPhillips ’03 is in the middle of her own March Madness, but not because of basketball.

A graduate of Elon’s music theater program, McPhillips is working hard to reach an ambitious goal: Raise $100,000 for her first independent film, The Other One, by April 1.

Her short films have had festival success and won awards and now she hopes to do the same with her first feature-length feature.

McPhillips, who is co-producing and acting in the film, said that to create a “truly original concept that’s not curtailed by studio executives or nervous investors,” she is relying on contributions from movie watchers who want to see the film made.

Visit McPhillips fundraising page.

A Chicago-based production alliance, The Other One tells the story of a teacher who returns to her childhood home after a tragic school shooting to take care of her elderly mother. While there, she comes to terms with dark family secrets.

“We’re also in the midst of creating two reality TV shows, a gritty mini-series and a big-budget feature film, and our process for The Other One is incredibly refreshing,” McPhillips said.

Besides McPhillips, the film will also feature Cait Bidwell, daughter of Elon alumna Patricia Brennan Bidwell ’72. The two connected after Patricia read about McPhillips’ other film project, Beautiful Little Fools, in the summer 2012 edition of The Magazine of Elon.

McPhillips is not the only Elon alumni currently relying on individual contributions to fund a film.

After living in Los Angeles for nearly three years, School of Communications graduate Colin Havey ’10 is directing his first short film, The Hunter’s Head.

“After working on various different projects in the film world—from a feature film, to DP on an award-winning documentary, to numerous shorts, web and music videos—I’m ready to take the next step: directing this incredibly compelling short film,” he writes on his fundraising page.

The film is an adaption of a Benjamin Loory’s short story in “Stories for the Nighttime and Some for the Day” and follows a boy and a hunter who live in a remote forest village.

Havey’s goal is to raise $20,000 by May 8.

“If you like Game of Thrones, you’re going to love this film,” he writes. “Hunter’s Head is the culmination of my last six years of professional training and learning how to make movies. This is the beginning of that journey and the only way I can think to do it is with the help of my friends, family, colleagues and anyone who likes the idea.”

Visit Havey’s fundraising page.