My Bolder Sister Chat with Director Morgan Dameron on New Film, Different Flowers

I’ve always been one of those people who values the art of storytelling. I require every book I read and movie I watch to stir up some sort of emotion within me. Basically, I want to be moved. Whether it’s through tears, laughter, or even sometimes anger, I need those ending credits to role with me in some sort of space that differed from the one I was in before I started watching.

Different Flowers, a new movie premiering this week, put me in one of those spaces, and speaking with the director, Morgan Dameron, was the icing on the cake.

If I could put into film the actions I want the readers of the Bolder Sister blog to take, Different Flowers would do just that. It’s a female-empowered family dramedy, starring Emma Bell, Hope Lauren and Shelley Long, that speaks to our voices, our choices and our desires. There are so many reminders of BOLD in this film that make it so easy to cheer for the main characters. The sisters in Different Flowers, Emma and Millie, will definitely have you re-examining your own life’s decisions making sure you too are following that inner bold girl guide you possess. But Bolder Sisters you have to see it for yourself. It premiers September 29th, in select theaters.

Here’s more from my chat with the director, our Bolder Sister Spotlight, Morgan Dameron 

The Bolder Sister: I am so excited to speak with you.

Morgan Dameron: Aww, thank you. I’m excited to speak with you.

The Bolder Sister: After viewing the film, I was even more excited because I just felt like Different Flowers captured everything I’m trying to do with The Bolder Sister blog. What made you choose this journey, directing, filmmaking?

Morgan: That’s a great question. Well, let me just start by saying I was putting together places to try and reach out to about Different Flowers and I came across your blog and it just felt so kismet. Because Millie’s journey and my journey in making this film has been a lot about finding your own voice, how hard that can be and trusting your instincts. You know, you come up against a lot of challenges in life and to stay true to yourself is really hard and I love that you talk about how you shouldn’t be afraid of that. That is part of living and I just really appreciated that, so thank you for putting all those good vibes out into the world.

The Bolder Sister:  Thank you.

Morgan: Absolutely. Yeah, I mean, I have wanted to be a director since I was a kid. Since I was five or six, I think. I danced when I was little and done theater and was really interested in the arts. But I didn’t really have access to a film community. I’m from Kansas City, Missouri, so there’s not a huge industry there. But since I was little I was always sort of filming things. And I just continued to sort of stick with it. When I was about 12 or 13, I started going to my local independent filmmaker coalition meeting, which were all rooms full of people who were much more experienced than me. They had a little section where you could volunteer to be a PA and that was my first experience working on films, volunteering for those members. And then I started to enter their competitions and then I applied to film school. I was also really supported by Kansas City Women and Film, which were a great group of mentors to me.  I went to USC and came out to Los Angeles and I’ve been here almost 10 years.

The Bolder Sister: Wow, just to know so early on what you wanted to do. That’s amazing.

Morgan: It was something that really called to me. And its funny cause I remember sort of putting on little plays with my siblings or my friends and I would always tell them where to stand or what to do and I didn’t realize that that was a job you could have.

The Bolder Sister: Why Different Flowers? Why this story? Why do you think that it was so important to share?

Morgan: Well, I really wanted to make a film that I wanted to see when I was growing up. I have sisters, I have two sisters and that relationship is so special and unique and even if you don’t have a sister, you’ve got someone in your life that’s that push and pull, ride or die friend and I really felt like that was something that I wanted to explore. Particularly, between two women. And then, in addition to that, I wanted to film in Kansas City. I wanted to make a movie in my hometown. Sort of inspired by these summers I spent growing up on my grandparent’s farm and how different that feels from sort of my day-to-day life in Los Angeles. I mean you couldn’t really get two more different experiences. And just the idea of, in a time of trouble, to go to a place where you feel safe but to also be there with the one person who can call you out and not let you escape from your problems. I thought it would just be pretty funny.

The Bolder Sister: I loved it, I really did. I have sisters, so that relationship dynamic spoke to me.

Morgan:  They’ve sort of each had their own journeys. Cause even though it is sort of Millie’s story, Emma’s a big part of it and so I wanted her to have a little bit of a full circle moment too.

The Bolder Sister: Why do you think that freedom of choice, trusting your instinct, following your gut and going for it, are so important-Particularly for women?

Morgan: I think there is nothing more important, particularly for women, than trusting your own voice and lifting that voice up and using it. I think it can be difficult because I think especially as women, you don’t want to put anything out into the world until it’s perfect, until you know it’s right, until you’ve tested it 100 different ways in your head and then you say it out loud. And I think that it usually pays off to take a risk. If it’s scary, it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t do it, it probably means you should do it. If it scares you, you should overcome those fears. I try to live that way. It’s definitely hard, but it’s something that we’re sort of always striving for. But I think that having that trust in yourself will take you so far.

The Bolder Sister: I couldn’t agree more and that’s been my motto for life lately, when I get that nervousness in the pit of my stomach- Those are the things I know I have to do. Like, that’s my sign. That’s my theme now, you gotta do it.

Morgan: Absolutely. Yup. You gotta do it. Yeah. You don’t want to regret not doing it either.

The Bolder Sister: No. And that’s my thing, I want to live a life with no regret. I just want to keep pursuing and encouraging other women, like yeah, life is once, you gotta, if you’re feeling it, go for it.

Morgan: Well that’s been one of the coolest things about this process is meeting other women, whether it’s on the road at film festivals or even women who are part of our crew. Men, too. But particularly women, it always inspires me to see them sort of take on that confidence and go use it out in the world. We’ve had quite a few people who have now decided, all right I am, I’m going all in, doing film. We had a college student who changed her major and switched schools to go to a film school after working on the movie. We had a couple of our really young actresses, they’re 11, I think they just turned 12, twins. And they went home and starting writing their own stories. I just love hearing that because hopefully, one person using their voice means that the next person will and the next person will and hopefully- Yeah, it spreads.

The Bolder Sister: Absolutely. What advice would you give someone, a woman who’s struggling with that?

Morgan: I definitely still struggle with it all the time and maybe that’s the thing to know is that you know, nobody’s perfect, and we’re all just trying to do our best and if you’re struggling, it’s gonna pass. You’ll find your confidence again. And just try and trust yourself and keep working. I always try and return to the work. So if I’m feeling overwhelmed or not confident or I feel, you know if you’re scared of the next step, I look at, okay what’s the next task I can check off my to-do list and just keep moving forward.

The Bolder Sister: I love that. And how can we find out more about Different Flowers?

Morgan: Different Flowers is coming to a theater near you, September 29th. In Chicago, it’s gonna be at the AMC River East 21. And then in nine other cinemas, mainly in the Midwest. Also, Los Angeles and New York. It’ll be on iTunes and Google Play later this Fall, in October. The website is differentflowersmovie.com and all the theaters are listed there. We’re also on Facebook and Twitter.

The Bolder Sister: Oh perfect. Wonderful! Well, thank you so much. I’m so excited.

Morgan: Thank you. Oh my gosh, I’m so excited. I’m so grateful for you taking the time.

Bolder Sisters, again, this film speaks to being bold and taking risks. Definitely check it out, and I would love for you to share a comment below on your big and bold takeaways from Different Flowers.

 

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