The feature film, SCOUT, which premieres this weekend at the Newport Beach Film Festival, was co-written by the director Laurie Weltz and her daughter, actress India Ennenga, who plays the title role of Scout. Laurie Weltz an award winning writer/director gave her daughter, India Ennenga, her first role at the age of three in Laurie’s award winning feature film WRESTLING WITH ALLIGATORS, which was nominated for a Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival. But Laurie didn’t let India act again until she was nine, when she finally gave in to her daughter’s frequent requests to try her hand at acting. India was immediately cast in several commercials and as the voice of the title character in Noggin’s animated children’s show, PINKY DINKY DOO. India went on to make several feature films, as well as being a series regular on HBO’S TREME and one of the stars of the new A&E series THE RETURNED.
“One of the most exciting parts about this project has been the opportunity to work with my daughter on developing a character and a screenplay.” Laurie said. “When she first asked me to write her a script, with a part she would really enjoy playing, she gave the film, THE PROFESSIONAL, as the ultimate prototype. From this jumping off point, India and I started to create a character that would both challenge her, and at the same time be believable. We watched dozens of movies together; not only The Professional, but Manny and Lo, Paper Moon, La Femme Nikita, and Thelma and Louise, looking at strong female protagonists and what made them interesting. From here we started to sketch out our own character, finding a voice and a life for her. I’d write scenes, and she’d rewrite them and vise versa. When we felt we had established a strong base for the story, I started to write the screenplay, while India went back to acting and her schoolwork.”
For Laurie directing India was a breeze, because even though they had never worked professionally together before, she always coached India for all her auditions and was frequently on set with India when she was shooting, helping her to prepare for her roles and giving her feedback. “I loved having young Onata Aprile, who plays India’s sister in the film, on set and watching her interact with her mother. I always worried that other directors probably hated having me on set with India, but it was really helpful having Onata’s mother, who is an actress herself, there, helping her daughter. India and I have a shorthand to communicate, and I saw the same thing with Onata and her mother. “
Scout will be playing this Saturday, April 25th at 8:00 PM at Island Cinema and Wednesday, April 29th at 5:15 at the Triangle. For tickets and more information please visit our Newport Beach Festival Page at :
Or our website. www.scoutthemovie.com