I got to talking to my friend C.C., of the Actress Model Whatever podcast, last night about stuff and shit and we got around to discussing worthwhile things to do this Summer that didn't involve debauchery. I had to admit that I hadn't planned a single thing this Summer that didn't involve catering to some selfish whim or another.
She mentioned Zeno Mountain Farm, an organization that runs camps in Venice Beach, Vermont, Guatemala and Florida. They're set up to foster life-long relationships between creatives of varying physical and mental abilities. She regaled me with enthusiastic tales of producing Bulletproof Jackson, a Western, filmed with wardrobe and props donated from major Hollywood studios starring disabled actors (some you may recognize from MTV's "How's Your News?" and national commercials etc).
Hearing her go on about this camp where disabled actors get to be heroic, emotional, angry, and cool on screen made me think twice about all the excuses I have for not giving back to the creative community - especially one that has few options in Hollywood except to portray themselves as in need, vulnerable or the object of pity. Interestingly enough, Bulletproof Jackson was filmed with the wardrobe of 2011's Cowboys & Aliens, and quite honestly looks like a better movie. If you'd like to check out the premiere and you're in NYC, it'll be at the Tribeca Cinema at 7:30 tomorrow. The Boston Globe had this to say about the film. Check out the trailer on Vimeo!
Consider spending some time at the Zeno Mountain Farm Camp in Vermont if you're in the New York region. If you happen to be elsewhere, check out their website for opportunities to volunteer in your part of the world!