: Narrative Short
GENRE: Drama
STATUS: Pre-Production


When a young social elite at the turn of the nineteenth century explores life as a modern woman, she risks losing the man she loves and a certain future.


At the turn of the 19th century, Midwestern, social elite Clemence Finch, returns from an outing with Birgit Johannsen a prominent, independent, European woman who engineers a luncheon at a local hotel without a male family member escort. The thrill of her newfound freedom and independence shatters Clemence’s world and her once singular desire to marry the man she loves and bear his children is called into question.


To introduce you to Clemence’s world as a social elite who resides in a giant mansion in the wealthiest neighborhood in the city, we will shoot using wide angle lens. With a wide angle lens I can show the beautiful interiors that Clemence inhabits with beautifully sculpted woodwork, fine art, and tapestries. Using a Steadicam will allow me to convey Clemence’s attitude and persona wherein she floats through life unencumbered by unwanted thoughts, obligations and responsibilities. She is free to focus on whatever she desires. As Clemence and Alba admire a newly acquired ball gown, we will use a hand-held camera to become more intimate with her examination of the structure, which will emphasize her passion and excitement for fashion and beauty. The examination of the ball gown will also contrast with the enormity of the story Clemence relays to Alba, of meeting Mrs. Johannsen and of their adventure of dining at a local hotel without a male escort. The enormity and lifechanging event is downplayed by the preoccupation with the ball gown. As the day turns to night and Clemence meets her intended Samuel at an opulent gathering, we will use a more lock down style, focusing on Clemence’s discomfort at the realization that her standing in the world is more limiting and smothering than she was previously aware of. By crowding Clemence into the corners of the frame, making her look small and helpless we will feel her oppression. With her final decision to forego love in her quest for independence and self-rule, we will see her more evenly balanced in the frame.


Julie Koehnen - Writer/Director/Producer

After getting her degree from LA’s Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising, Koehnen pursued her passion for filmmaking by writing, producing, acting and directing short films, and had her full-length feature RAISING THE DEAD (a.k.a. DON’T TELL) successfully produced by Peer Oppenheimer Productions starring Alison Eastwood. In 2017 Koehnen left a successful editing career in Los Angeles to pursue filmmaking and screenwriting full time. In 2019 she was awarded the 2020 Minnesota State Arts Board Artist Initiative Grant to create AWAKENING the sequel to her award winning film Master Servant, and she is also the recipient of the 2020 Metropolitan Regional Arts Grant Next Step Fund. She is currently developing and writing the television series Summit Avenue inspired by the Empire builder, James J. Hill as well as developing the independent feature A SLIP OF THE KNOT. Julie loves to dance and is currently learning the Balboa.

Steven Elbert - Producer

Former Vice President of Event Production for American Express / Ameriprise turned filmmaker premiered his directorial debut, ICE HOUSE, at the 2017 Twin Cities Film Fest. He was a producer along with Ruth Maramis on Julie Koehnen’s short film MASTER SERVANT. In his next venture, Elbert lends his considerable producing talents to the short film sequel to MASTER SERVANT titled AWAKENING, a historical drama inspired by true events of the Gilded Age in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Ruth Maramis - Producer

Ruth Maramis is a screenwriter/producer/film critic based in the Twin Cities. She wrote and produced an indie romance short Hearts Want, which won the Best Audience Award at Twin Cities Film Fest in 2017, as well as Best Writer at Austin Under the Stars Film Festival. It’s now available on Amazon Prime after a successful film festival run all over the country including the UK and Australia. She is also a prolific film blogger/critic who owns and manages FlixChatter Blog. Ruth is a member of FilmNorth, The Playwrights Center, and Minnesota Women in Film and TV.


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