Meet our Cast & Crew: DIANE BELL BYRNE, Writer/Director

Hometown: Born in Dumfries (Scotland); grew up in Kobe (Japan), Melbourne (Australia) and Dusseldorf (Germany); matured in Edinburgh (Scotland) and Barcelona (Spain); currently residing Santa Monica (USA).  Hometowns everywhere.

All-time favorite movies (3): (What?! Only 3?!  Okay…) It’s a Wonderful Life, Tokyo Story, Au Hasard Balthazar (+ so many more).

All-time favorite musical artists: Glenn Gould, Billie Holiday, Diego El Cigala

All-time favorite TV shows: Twin Peaks, The Sopranos, Fawlty Towers

Favorite new artist-to-watch: A filmmaker called Rory Gory - her first film AUDIENCE is so unique, can’t wait to see what she does next

Favorite Instagram account: @subeepix - this is my sister Susan’s account; she’s an incredibly talented photographer and I love seeing the world through her eyes

Favorite Twitter account: @melsil - she supports women in film and passionately brings attention to films by women that I otherwise wouldn’t know about

If you could have lunch with one person (dead or alive), who would it be?: Thich Nhat Hanh.  Pure presence.

If you could be in someone else’s shoes for one day (alive), who would it be?: Classical pianist Andras Schiff, so I could sit at the piano all day and play Bach and Beethoven, and know what that felt like

If you could have personally witnessed something, what would it have been?: Hamlet being performed for the first time at the Globe theater.

Most outrageous thing you’ve ever done?: Not telling you!

Twitter: @dianebell1

Instagram: @dianebell

I Dream of Dust

It’s 5AM in the desert and in the distance we hear the howling of a pack of coyotes.   The sun won’t rise for another half hour, but already the world is coming to life.

My DP, TJ Hellmuth, and I quietly walk along old animal paths, winding our way up to one of the main locations for our film. When we get there, we crouch into the dust and watch the sun slowly peak over distant mountains. The blue world turns pink.

TJ takes pictures while I just watch and listen. Watch and listen.

In the car, later that day, TJ says that there are different levels of presence in consciousness: asleep, awake but daydreaming, awake and paying attention, meditating…and then the most present of all: filmmaking.

I think this is why I love it so much. I slow down, I take notice. Of everything.

An ant on a grain of sand, the length of the shadows, the tone of the light at this minute and the next, the color of a teacup, the effect of a single cloud in the sky. The sound each step you take makes on the soft sand and on the gravel, the crunch that reminds you of snow.

The poetry of place is observed, inhaled, watched, felt and heard. And if we’re lucky, when we come to make the film, that presence will be passed on – the details we have discovered by slowing down and bearing true witness will be passed along.

The sun is higher now. I’m kicking dust in the air and TJ is photographing it, and we’re imagining our movie, a pivotal scene and how we will capture it.

A cloud of dust rises into the hot air, drifts out over the vast land…and evaporates into nothing.

Less than three weeks from now, we will start to shoot the film. Try to capture the dust cloud before it disappears.

But right now, we have to return to the world: to shot lists, to contracts, to finance agreements and budgets and schedules, but soon, soon we will be back in the desert.

And the coyotes will howl again.

- Diane Bell (Writer/Director)

TJ (DP), and Diane (Director)

TJ (DP), and Diane (Director)

Twitter (#OfDust): @rebelheartfilm
Instagram (#OfDust): @ofdustandbones

Hello to our Of Dust and Bones Family!

We are excited to announce the launch of our film's official website. This will be our hub for all information about the film, cast and crew, and updates from the set.  Please check it out and let us know what you think.  Also please let us know if there is anything you'd like to see featured on it. 

Speaking of the latest, our fearless leader and writer/director, Diane Bell, along with three of our producers Matt Medlin, Bonnie Cao, and Alexa Ammon, cinematographer TJ Hellmuth, and production designer Julia Van Vliet just returned from two days location scouting in the desert of Yucca Valley. Following a production meeting walking through the shooting schedule and shot list, the crew took a stroll in 97 degree heat through the desert behind Champagne Ranch in search of the perfect location for one of the film's biggest -- and most symbolic -- scenes. But stomping through the desert -- with both Bonnie and Alexa desperately underdressed for the desert clime -- any thought of the heat or the sun quickly slipped away. The seemingly endless expanse of sky, desert, and shrubs -- some still charred from the 2006 Sawtooth Fire -- stretched in every direction, lending a unique blend of calm mixed with electric energy from the crew. Spoiler alert: we found the perfect location for the scene and so many others!

We've included a few photos above from our days (and nights) to help you get a better idea of the landscape that so inspired us, and that we hope to bring to life in Of Dust and Bones.

In the meantime, please join us as we tweet, status update, and "insta" our way through the upcoming weeks of pre-production, production, post-, and distribution of what's shaping up to be a truly beautiful film and experience for the entire #OfDust family. We'd love to meet you, and hope you and yours have a joyous 4th of July weekend!

Twitter (#OfDust): @rebelheartfilm
Instagram (#OfDust): @ofdustandbones