The Ransom

Two kidnappers abduct the child of who they think is a wealthy billionaire. Hilarity ensues.

Premiered at Annex Theatre’s Spin the Bottle – Friday March 2nd, 2012.

Raul Allen – Tom Wiseley
Jody Allen – Keira McDonald
Raul, Jr. – Paris Siris
Danyel – Daniel Christensen
Paul – Paul Gude
Ben – Ben Laurance

“Wake Me From This Dream,” by John Ackermann (

Special thanks to:
Jem Lewis
Annex Theatre

The backstory:
I can’t remember what Paul and I were talking about, but for some reason we got on the subject of ransom photos, and wouldn’t it be funny if the photos of the kidnapped child sent to the grieving parents showed the true photographic skill of the abductors?

Around this same time (January 2009), the Seattle P-I had lost its battle with the Seattle Times to maintain the Joint Operating Agreement (JOA), and therefore their fate was sealed. Once the JOA was dissolved the following March, the print edition of the P-I would be no more. This scenario fed nicely into our little ransom-photo-scheme, so we dedicated the video to the demise of the print edition of the P-I.

We got to work around January of ’09 and filmed the scenes with the kidnappers in their lair at Annex Theatre. Once we were done, it was up to me to finish the rest of the film that month for a premiere at that February’s Spin the Bottle. I needed a house with a mail slot in the door, an art gallery, photos of Raul, Jr. to hang, and people to act as gallery patrons. It was all so overwhelming that I basically decided to not do it, so we changed course and filmed a smaller, more modest video to show at Spin the Bottle (“The Werehouse”).

Anyway, fast forward three years. Paul and I are tasked to show a film at the March 2012 Spin the Bottle, and we decide to finish “The Ransom.” I had, after all, kept the script in my bag, carrying it with me everywhere I went. I got to work quickly, making phone calls to actors, and fortunately everybody we had written the script for (Tom, Keira, and Daniel) were available on the less than 24 hours notice.

Granted, I would have preferred to film in an actual house and art gallery instead of in front of the green-screen (which was basically done out of necessity), however I’m quite pleased with how it turned out seeing as how, after procrastinating for three years, I had to put the film together in less than a day.

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