Whether you have a few favorites or an overflowing closet full, shoes are an essential part of our lives and can be easily taken for granted. Although the perfect pair of shoes can do wonders by adding the right touch to an ensemble, they also protect and help to get us from point A to point B. No matter where we go in life whenever we move they move right along with us through a winding road of trials, tribulations, successes, and achievements. If you could sit and have a conversation with your walking buddies what might they say about your life journey?
This past Tuesday at the Moviehouse and Eatery director/producer Brandy Amstel hosted a fundraising event for her newest film project Vital, Vibrant & Alive which included a special screening of her recent award winning short-documentary, In Her Shoes.
In her Shoes tells the story of a woman named Betty, who had a seemingly perfect packaged life complete with a job, marriage and a home until certain unfortunate events took place that changed her life entirely. She found herself homeless. It’s a sobering reality, one that makes your head turn to both sides and quietly think to yourself “could that ever happen to me?”. Betty’s story is one that is untold that evokes great compassion and is truly inspirational. In Her Shoes has made quite the impact as it has screened in numerous U.S cities and even worldwide. It was also recognized at the Trail Dance Film Festival, winning the Golden Drover award for “Best Short Documentary”.
At the fundraising/screening event attendees enjoyed delicious food and drinks from the Moviehouse and Eatery and partook in a silent auction in hopes to take away some fabulous prizes. Gently used women’s shoes were also being donated to Dress for Success of Austin and the Trinity Center. About 80 pairs of shoes were collected that evening to help women in need get back on their feet. Director Brandy Amstel held a brief Q&A about the film and introduced three local experts whom of which are Jan Goss-Gibson , Megan Tull, and Dr. Tenesha Ward who will be featured in her new film project Vital, Vibrant & Alive. It was a delightful evening of giving to films that matter and taking away an important message that might inspire many more minds to make a difference in the world.
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After the screening I was able to catch up with director Brandy Amstel and ask her a couple questions about herself and the documentary, In Her Shoes.
CreatedWoman: What inspired you passion for filmmaking and at what point in your life did you decide to pursue it as a career?
Brandy: “My mom would always say I wanted to be a director/producer in the movies and she kept a book where you would write what you wanted to be when you grow up, so I knew I wanted to be one for a long time. What inspired me to take action was a personal development program. I was at a point in my life where I wanted to do what I love to do and I’m going to take a stand and just do it. I had a job and I quit to start my own production company that sort of blossomed and people just came into alignment with my mission.”
CreatedWoman: What sparked your interest about Betty’s story and the idea to create a film about it?
Brandy: “She was a person that lived not too far from where I lived and just a few little unfortunate events caused her to find herself homeless on the streets, so it touched me that it was a story that a lot of people could relate to and would want to look in to and be inspired by.”
CreatedWoman: What experience did you find most rewarding while making this film?
Brandy: “The best experience was the screening and seeing the difference in the impact that it made, like for Dress for Success Austin. That was probably the most amazing thing. It was like wow! See, my film did make a difference.”
CreatedWoman: What do you hope your audience takes away when they watch In Her Shoes?
Brandy: “Compassion for their fellow man and to think twice before they make a judgment about someone who is out on the street, because they have no idea what they have been through. Also, knowing we all the power to make a difference, we just have to take action.”
CreatedWoman: What is your favorite movie of all time?
Brandy: “Lawrence of Arabia is one of my favorites. It’s a story of a man’s journey and it’s just a beautiful and epic tale.”
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To get involved or learn more, click HERE to find out how you can be a part of Living Powerfully and Brandy's Movies That Matter.
Written By: Sophie Magallanes, is an Austin native who is majoring in Fashion Merchandising at Texas State University. She has spent 3 years as a personal assistant and wedding album designer to Jenny DeMarco photography. In her free time Sophie enjoys her passion for dance and is a Lady Viper cheerleader for the Austin Vipers.