Determined to save her son from her abusive husband, a mother hits the road and goes to Oklahoma. When she learns her husband has accused her of kidnapping, she realizes she has to end the abuse once and for all. Here to talk about this movie, A Mother’s Escape (previously known as Great Plains), is the director, Blair Hayes.
Tell me a bit about yourself and your role with A Mother’s Escape.
BLAIR: I was approached by Kristofer McNeeley, an Executive Producer at Mar Vista Entertainment, and asked if I’d be interested in directing a movie from a story loosely based on his own childhood experience. When he told me the nature of the story, I said yes immediately.
What five words would you use to describe the film?
BLAIR: What a parent will do.
What got you interested in making movies?
BLAIR: Watching movies as a kid. And wanting to tell stories.
What was the greatest challenge you overcame in this production?
BLAIR: The Oklahoma heat. haha. It was brutal at times, but actually, the biggest challenge was creating the movie on the very low budget we had, making it look like it cost ten times more. I think we did a good job of it.
What did you enjoy about making this movie in Oklahoma?
BLAIR: The Oklahoma crew. Everyone was really devoted to their job and out to make the best movie they could.
What advice do you have for other filmmakers?
BLAIR: Remember that filmmaking is a communal art. You are working with lots of other people. You should be open to listening to ideas from anyone. You can find gems from the lowliest gofer to the Director of Photography.
Why should one see the movie?
BLAIR: The subject matter is, of course, somewhat hard to take, but the story is a compelling one, and it needs to be told. I’ve gotten numerous letters and emails from people who were abused as a child thanking me for bringing the story to light.
Anything else you want to say or let people know?
BLAIR: Tara Buck and Beth Grant are acting powerhouses, as are Billy Blair, Larry Dotson and Brett Bower, all of whom were local actors. And Damon Carney is not to be believed as Tommy, the stepfather. Hard role to play and he really went for it.