Even if you’ve never read the Twilight series and have no idea who Alice Cullen is, The Mary Alice Brandon File is a compelling 12-minute portrait of a woman plagued by visions of the future. Confined to a hospital bed and subjected to electroshock therapy, she has to fight to retain her identity.
“My name is Mary Alice Brandon. I am 19 years old,” she repeats to herself, mantra-like, holding a scrap of paper with the same words etched in pencil.
Grey-hued and somber, the film doesn’t feature a single vampire but somehow retains the spirit of the Twilight saga.
(Mary will ultimately become Alice Cullen, the precognitive vampire and adoptive sister of Edward Cullen.)
The scenes in the hospital, in which Mary is subjected to questioning by a menacing doctor in a lab coat played by Battlestar Galatica’s Michael Hogan are juxtaposed against flashbacks of Mary’s earlier life with her sinister mustache-sporting father.
When she sees a vision of herself being murdered at his behest, she has to figure out a way to escape his clutches.
The film is the final product of a contest Twilight author Stephanie Meyer introduced in 2014 in which she asked female authors to explore her books for back-stories and side-plots that didn’t get examined in her films and books. One thousand three hundred participants, including twin sisters Kailey and Samantha Spear, submitted scripts and voters worldwide selected the best six.
When the Spear sisters were selected, they lined up Nelsonite Aaron May as their primary editor. They applied to direct their own movie using the Vancouver casting studio they work for, giving them access to some of the best actors in Vancouver.
May was given the chance to work with big studios and special effect crews from Vancouver and L.A. The film then had a premiere in L.A. before being posted online for final voting.
The film now has over 2,600,000 views online and has over 22,000 shares on Facebook.
For more information visit Kailey and Samantha Spear on Facebook and follow the hashtag #TwilightStories.
To vote for the Mary Alice Brandon file in the competition visit lions.gt/votetwstories.
This story will be published in the Friday issue of the West Kootenay Advertiser.