Maysee McLean

Maysee McLean

Maysee McLean says...

I met Don Hickey, Helena Rose and Matthew Marshall when I responded to an addition call by m & s Marshall Productions and iFilmGroup for casting of various productions that they had in the works on one of the production's industry websites. The audition process was a great learning experience. My audition involved multiple audition pieces and elements as they were looking at me for various roles in a number of different productions.

Coming out of that process.  I landed three roles in three different productions.  The roles included being cast as “Piper Keys” a supporting role in the dramatic film “Blue Love”, The “Masked Girl”, a dramatic character suffering with depression for dramatic footage for the short film "Struggles Within", and I was involved in footage for the iFilmGroup.org promotional video.

Working with the production team has been very cool. I have had such a great time filming. It has been a great experience where I am learning so much about the industry and acting. Matthew, Don and the rest of the production team were so patient and helpful at guiding me through the requirements for each scene; the feeling and look needed. I appreciate these chances to participate in such great projects about such an important topics and issues. I am excited to see the final films and I can't wait to be a part of some other awesome projects.

It has opened up some amazing opportunities to push my limits and skills. Especially in order to achieve the emotional struggles of mental health that the character went through in "Struggles Within". It was emotionally exhausting and yet exhilarating at the same time.

Playing the role of Piper Keys has opens new doors within the building of characters that I have not had an opportunity to do until now. Each of these roles is giving me the opportunity to stretch myself as an actress and allowing me to learn the craft of acting while building new friendships and connections with people who share the passion for filming making.   I am so thankful to the iFilmGroup for allowing me to be a part of these productions.

Maysee McLean

T-MC-18-05

 Morgan Flanagan

Morgan Flanagan

Morgan Flanagan says...

 To many, the concept of “filming” is a job for movie stars, but people like Mathew Marshall and Corrinne Wood develop the actors and actresses of tomorrow. Their casts are always welcoming, and it is so wonderful to be immersed in a situation where each cast and crew member is on a first name basis with one another. Everyone is willing to help everyone, and I have been so blessed to be a part of such a unique opportunity. My first work was as a high school student in their film “Tuned In”, and by the first slate I was beyond intrigued. For me, starting out in such a relaxed and friendly environment was ideal.

Since then, I have had the pleasure of being a part of three more productions. Including being secondary character of ‘Hope’ in their dance dramatic film “Struggles Within”. I was then the role of secondary lead “Macey Madison” in their short film about bullying “Malicious Attack”. The final role I played the primary character of Megan Matthew’s in their feature film ‘Summer of Discovery’.  This character was a wonderful experience to play; a teenager who is transformed from seeing outer beauty as more important, to seeing inner beauty as much more important and allows herself to be a more natural version of herself.

Being on set has not only given me the opportunity to develop numerous friendships, but also gain valuable life experience and film credits. To me filming isn’t a job, rather, a chance to learn more about perspectives. (Then again I’m not a movie star). An example of these perspectives would be how each character approaches a situation differently, much like people in real life, and when you add in all the different camera angles you end up with one situation, and one hundred and one different points of view. With this in mind, I have been able to further understand how people differentiate between one another, and to build confidence around what makes me an individual.

As an ensemble, all the cast and crew have made each set a safe place to be, and kept everyone’s best interest in mind. Above all else, I am delighted to be on a set where everyone is always learning, and displaying a great deal of kindness. All the positive attitudes have allowed for everything to be fun and unintimidating. Overall, working with Corrinne Wood and Mathew Marshall, along with the  Production Team, has been a truly terrific way to enter the realm of “filming”.

Morgan Flanagan

T-MF-17-03

 Marley Cabral

Marley Cabral

Marley Cabral says...

How do you put into words about a process that changes your life and helps to define what you want to do in the future? I had the amazing privilege to have been cast as the lead “Emma” in the short film “Tuned In” by award winning director Matthew Marshall. This film changed my life in a number of ways through the life lessons I learned and skills of acting and film production I developed from being a part of this amazing team and production. I will touch on those points in a moment.

Following the wonderful growth experience of “Tuned In”. I had the opportunity to work with the production team again playing the role of fourth lead “Brittany” in the short film “Malicious Attack” about bullying. The film offered a wonderful experience to explore the issue of bullying in high school. Bullying is a topic I am passionate about as a youth advocate for “Free 2 Love” which is about being a voice in the world to be heard by taking a stand to spread “Luv” and ending bullying.

Most recently I had the opportunity to be part of a third production through m & s Marshall Productions when I was cast as “Diamond” in Marshall’s hour long dramatic film “Blue Love”.  Once again it was another opportunity to play another very different character then my two previous roles.

These three films have been a great experience for me and have allowed me to develop my skills as an actor and be mentored by some great fellow cast members and well as the films' wonderful director Matthew. The best part of working with him was, he understands when you talk to him. He understands if you find somethings harder than others! He's amazing at listening if you have a suggestion for him. He is patient in letting you navigate and find your way through a deep character. In the end those skills allowed me to perform the role at a higher level that has earned me awards for the role at film festivals.

The entire Production Team made working together so much fun. I loved almost every minute of it, even when I couldn't always understand the actions/placements I got. It was such a fun crowd of people to work with whom I made so many memories with. In the end looking back, many of the things I was told to do make more sense. I enjoyed the process of making the films because, it was so cool being the characters that were like me in some ways. I feel as if I connected to both characters I played mentally, physically, & emotionally over the process. It was cool to also play three completely opposite personalities, it gave me three totally different vibes and stretched me as an actress to develop my acting skills and character development.

There were some days with “Tuned In” that were not all sunshine and roses because of long filming days, lots to film and stressful moments on set, but as a team we overcame them and worked together to get to the final product which in the case of “Tuned In”, it has won a large number of awards. Including winning a number of ‘Best Actress’ awards myself for my role of Emma in the film. I also received a prestigious MIC International Awards nomination for Best Actress in a short film (Age 16 Category) for my portrayal of Emma. Although I did not win, being nominated was a huge honour.

What I took away from all this is that when things get hard you have to push through them to get the amazing outcome of all the hard work you have put towards it. I learned film making is NOT as easy as it seemed in my head. So much goes into the process, so many thoughts and feelings to create the reaction and emotion that you see in the end in the final film. A lot goes into the process and you have so many takes of the same scene until the RIGHT one happens & when it happens you'll know you have nailed it.

Over all I had so much fun making the films. I made so many amazing new friendships, memories, laughs, inside jokes between takes, it was just amazing to become so close with a group of super fun people who love doing the same thing as me and it made this process so fun!

I think through the process of being a part of these films there are lessons/skills that I am taking away with me that I will apply to my life as I move forward. Such as the skill of pushing through troubles when things get hard so I can have the most amazing outcome. I believe this skill has already helped me with preparing for my future because if I hadn’t had some days of pushing through the rough patches I wouldn't know how helpful a skill this is and how it helps me to succeed!! It's a major stress reliever!

The process of working with the production team has also prepared me for my lifelong dream pursuing acting and the next step in my journey as I will be attending Fanshawe College’s Theatre Arts-Performance Program and working towards my goal of performing in musical theatre and acting on stage.

I have very much enjoyed the opportunities I have had with the team and the mentoring I have received. It has helped me prepare for pursuing acting in my future and post-secondary studies. If I got the opportunity to, I would totally take it and work with them again! It was just such a great experience to work with Matthew and the production team on not just one but two projects! It means a lot!! I am so very thankful for the awesomeness and everything Matthew Marshall and the Production Team brought to the table. I encourage people interested in acting and crew to be a part of their team. There is so much you can learn working with them.

Marley Cabral

T-MC-17-10

Zachary Wilson
Zachary Wilson

Zachary Wilson says...

I have had the pleasure of acting in two films with Matthew Marshall and Corrinne Wood: "Malicious Attack" and "Summer of Discovery". It was a great experience and I’m excited to have the opportunity to work with them again on future projects.

The vibe and atmosphere on the sets was incredible. Everyone worked hard and supported each other, and it was great to see the scripts come to life through the props, costumes, and acting. Being surrounded by other artists with a variety of backgrounds exposed me to different acting techniques, and I was able to develop as a performer while at the same time learning about film making in general.

Being involved in these films also introduced me to kids my age who share my passion for acting, and I’ve made a few great friends in the process. They challenge me to excel as an actor, and we all support each other on and off the set. It’s a great community!

As a teenage boy I also have to say that the food served on set is delicious, and was another highlight for me! Some days were long, but we were never hungry!

I’m so grateful for the opportunity to be part of this industry. I’ve become more confident and creative, and I’m excited to see what the future holds!

Zachary Wilson

T-ZW-17-11

 Jamie Rainbird

Jamie Rainbird

Jamie Rainbird says...

Having acted in several Television Commercials and school plays as a teenager, my acting bug took a permanent back seat while other priorities such as university, career and family took centre stage in my life.

A chance encounter in 2015 reignited my desire to act and led to my first introduction to Matthew Marshall on the set of the movie “J”. Since this time, I have now been very fortunate to have worked with Matt on seven film projects in both supporting and lead roles, which has also allowed me to meet and work with some truly incredible people. Although too many to name, Don Hickey, and Corrinne Wood deserve mention among them.

The projects include "Tuned In", "Ronny’s Bench"," Malicious Attack", "Summer of Discovery" and "Blue Love".

As a director, Matthew has been amazing to work with in that he has provided me not just the opportunity and guidance to tackle a variety of roles, but has allowed me the creative freedom to express my roles in directions that I wanted to pursue. There is no denying that without his support my desire to act would not have been rekindled.

Perhaps even more crucial to my enjoyment and ability to take on these roles, has been that shooting schedules have always been accommodating and taken place in the London, St Thomas or Chatham-Kent, Ontario region. This has allowed me to focus on my work commitments throughout the week while shooting scenes after hours. This has also been particularly important to the younger members of cast and crew who are still full time students, yet eager to learn or participate.

I am proud to be associated with Matt and Don. I wish them continued success in directing and producing entertaining and meaningful films that no matter the subject, portray an important, underlying message. They are providing opportunities through iFilmGroup for creative minds of all ages to learn or enhance their skills whether it be as a member of his film cast or crew. I have no doubt that their future projects through iFilmGroup will continue this tradition of open minded, uplifting professionalism.

Although I have no idea where this acting journey may take me, it would never have started at all had it not been for the influence of key people like Matthew Marshall who have positively impacted my life.

Thanks Matt and keep up the great work!!

Jamie Rainbird

T-JR-18-07

  Ian James Smith

Ian James Smith

Ian says...

When I first started to want to get into the film Industry, Matthew took a chance on me and it was the start of my film career. This initial opportunity came with a short film called “The Struggles Within”. Matthew hired me to be PA (Production Assistant). Over the period of the film, Matthew mentored me and allowed me to assist with camera work. Through this work with the camera it allowed me to understand why an actor needs to work with the camera-person.

When Matthew began his short film “Malicious Attack” about bullying, I was given the opportunity to help as the boom mic operator and also was cast in the role of Jarod Jackson. It was through this experience that I learned how important it was for an actor to be aware of where the microphone is and why.

Later on I worked as an actor with the production team when the feature film ‘The Summer of Discovery” was being filmed. I was having a rough summer due to a recent surgery. Matthew empathized with what I was going through and sought a way to help me through the experience when he realized I was not OK. He watched out for me on set and ensured that things were done to aid me along so I could perform at my best and have my best performances when I was on camera. For that I am grateful.

Matthew, Don and the Production Team have opened doors to the film industry for me. Allowing me to understand the workings of both boom and camera. Which as an actor allowed me to understand the do’s and don'ts of working in a film environment... there is a good reason actors have marks.

Thank you Matthew for your empathy, work oriented mindset and the stable work atmosphere that you and the Production Team strives to create. They have taught much on the start of my journey that has led to more opportunities to grow and further my career.

Thanks to this dedicated team I have had many opportunities opened up to me. Including worked in "background" [BG] on the film “Every Day” and the TV series like “Fear thy Neighbour”. I have also had the opportunity to play John Kennedy Jr. in "Black Donnellys". I have been cast in "1000: The Sword in the Stone", to play Jack Siena which is a principle role. The film is a 20 million euro production. I have also had an opportunity to audition for lead in a TVO series.

Ian James Smith

T-IJS-17-11

 Helena Rose of www.iFilmGroup.org

Helena Rose of www.iFilmGroup.org

Helena Rose says...

How do I word it.... I don’t know where I’d be right now if it weren’t for Matthew, Corrinne and Don. I had just graduated from studying the performing arts at Fanshawe College (London, Ontario) when I met them.

I was worried about where to go next to pursue my career in acting; moving to Toronto just wasn’t an option for me, yet all I wanted was to begin working on my resume.

I found a casting call on Stage 32 for extras by Matthew and his company m & s Marshall productions for his short film “Tuned In”. I replied hastily. Sure, I couldn’t really put an extra role on my resume, but it was a chance at local work! I hoped it would be my way into the industry, maybe build me some connections, and boy was I right.

I’ve been working steadily with these amazing people through seven film projects. They included “Tuned In”, "Ronny’s Bench", “Malicious Attack”, Blue Love, Not Ready, “In Limbo” and “Summer of Discovery”.

Through this fabulous group of people I have achieved valuable experience and practice; made new friends, connections and gained insight into the world “behind the scenes”. I have played a high school student, a medical attendant, the role of complex older ‘student’, Alicia, who is witness to bullying in a high school. I have also played the emotional role of “Whitney” in “In Limbo” and fun “Candy” in “Summer of Discovery”. Experience a marriage fall apart through the eyes of Kaitlyn a nurse in “Blue Love” and found love in “Not Ready”. I have also branched into the technical side as co-writer and co-producer of “Blue Love”.

Each role has been different and unique, allowing me to stretch myself in new directions and expand the skills I have learned. All while never having to leave the area of London, Ontario. I have even through iFilmGroup been able to pass my acting knowledge on to others through iFilmGroup workshops where I coach and train actors from the group that are being brought along in the craft of acting.

Through all the experience with these people they have been supportive of the things life throws at you. Sometimes life and work get in the way, but they have been such phenomenal, accommodating and helpful people, I couldn’t have asked for a better group. Life is hard, finding work is harder, but with the iFilmGroup, led by Don and Matthew, I’ve actually felt as though I have a place here in my comfortable home city.

Everyone wants to help out, everyone is local and volunteer based, and it just leaves so much room for creative input and learning different parts of what it takes to film a movie. Their eagerness to bring in youth opens up opportunities I wish I had in high school, and I’m endlessly grateful to have it now.

I’m excited for the future with these new ventures through iFilmGroup on the horizon with both Don Hickey and Matthew Marshall, and I could never have gotten into such a happy and fulfilling place in my life right now without this little local filming world.

Helena Rose

T-HA-AC-17-10

Anna Victoria
Anna Victoria

Anna Victoria says...

In December 2016, I started a journey working with m & s Marshall Productions, and  iFilmGroup.  I had no idea how life-changing their mentorship and presence in my life would be. Through them, I have forged great friendships, made wonderful memories and progressed immensely in my career. I feel immensely grateful to Matthew Marshall of m & s Marshall Productions, Don Hickey and Helena Rose of iFilmGroup for giving youth like myself the opportunity to learn about film through actively participating in their films.

For a couple of years, since I began high school, I’ve grown an interest in acting. My one problem was the lack of opportunity there is for youth in the film industry. For example, I have found many opportunities in theatre but nothing in film until I came across “Malicious Attack”, a short film directed by Matthew Marshall, looking for people interested in being part of the production as “students” in the cast.

Through this door opening opportunity on “Malicious Attack”, I was able to work on the crew of the feature film “Summer of Discovery”, directed by Corrinne Wood. I believe that the way in which both of these directors interact with their actors and crew allows everyone to learn so much more than on the set of a big-budget project. Here, everyone who is willing to give their all and get “hands-on” learning in all aspects of a production.

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I am thankful for the many things I learned on these sets. Because of the Production Team and the people I met, I received advice that helped me to play the role of a Turkish protester on an episode of “Designated Survivor” starring award winning Hollywood actor Kiefer Sutherland [Disney-ABC Domestic Television].

Because of my time with working with the production team and what I have learned it has opened other doors for me as well. I got the opportunity to play the lead, Teresa, in “Lost and Found” a short film about a young nun who is put in a tough a predicament of choosing between the convent and her dreams. This opportunity opened my eyes to what it takes to be in a leading role and made me fall in love with acting like never before as I have never had the responsibility of the main role. She has also had the opportunity to be a background 'student' on the set of “the Good Witch” starring Catherine Bell.

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Working on the iFilmGroup sets has taught me “set etiquette” which has helped me feel comfortable on other sets like the ones of “Designated Survivor” and “The Good Witch”.

The time and experience with the Production team of iFilmGroup and other opportunities like “Designated Survivor” and “The Good Witch”have introduced me to how the filming process differs from small sets to big ones.

In the Spring of 2018 I returned to work with the iFilmGroup production team on my third and fourth projects. Working again with m & s Marshall Productions as I was cast in the role of “Blair Cyra” in the hour long drama “Blue Love” and then by iFilmGroup as part of their promotional video for their iFilmGroup Program. I’m grateful for the opportunity to work with these production companies again and bring to life the characters and roles I am playing.

I also had the opportunity to during the spring of 2018 to be a part of the iFilmGroup Accredited Mentoring Program and performed my mentorship hours for school under the guidance of film director Matthew Marshall. It was a very rewarding experience and opened my eyes to the many aspects of the film industry.

Being a part of iFilmGroup's community has changed my life. I have forged great friendships, made wonderful memories, progressed immensely in my career and gained valuable insight into the film industry.  I’m very thankful to Matthew, Don, Helena, and the entire Production Team, who created such positive, inclusive and educational environment.

I have grown immeasurably as an actor and as a person. I have been able to put into practice my professionalism, punctuality, networking, on-screen acting, sound-recording and much more.  Because of the opportunities given to me to work on a variety of projects, I had the chance to observe numerous aspects of filming, from working the boom mic, to watching the team  set up before takes, to acting on screen. Matthew, Don and the whole team at iFilmGroup were extremely welcoming and helpful, and have inspired me to begin writing and filming my own projects.

I couldn’t be thankful enough for all the iFilmGroup team has taught and given to me!

Anna Victoria

T-AV-17-09-a

 Max Steinberg

Max Steinberg

Max Steinberg says...

I have had the pleasure of working with Matthew Marshall (m & s Marshall Productions) on his short film "Malicious Attack" and Corrinne Wood (IME Films) on her feature film "Summer of Discovery".

It’s been so much fun being part of these films. Not only have I gained valuable hands on experience in several areas of film-making, that I might not have had the opportunity to experience otherwise. I have made some lifelong friends and worked with a ton of super talented people right in my own community.

I have had the pleasure of interviewing Matthew about film making on my talk show "Max TV" airing on London Rogers Television. For my role as host of the show, I received a nomination for "Best Young Host" from the Joey Awards. On Max TV, Matthew and I discussed the contribution independent films plays in getting the word out about important topics, that otherwise might not get the attention they deserve. One example is bulling, which happens to be the subject of Matthew’s latest short "Malicious Attack". It explores how prevalent bullying is, and the effect it is having on people my age, not only in our schools, and communities, but on-line as well.

As an aspiring actor I love that there are directors, writers, producers, like Corrinne and Matthew so close to home making award winning movies; that I have the honour of being a part of.

Max Steinberg

T-MS-17-10