“The character, Jane, is a composite of many women that I know, but is partly based on a friend, a survivor of sexual abuse, someone who is so strong that you would never see her battles, yet privately she constantly struggled with control in her life.”
Leap: A Short Film
By Jamie Miller and Tyler Ham Pong
In our short film “Leap,” a survivor of sexual abuse rethinks suicide after falling in with a group of drifters. Directed by award-winning director and activist Marlo Bernier, and shot by New York City fashion photographer Chris Vongsawat — Leap combines a haunting, visually-stunning aesthetic with a nuanced ensemble performance led by actor/writer Jamie Miller as ‘Jane’ and actor/producer Tyler Ham Pong as ‘Bryce.’
Tyler Ham Pong and Jamie Miller of Kill the Pig Productions have been honored in multiple film festivals including the Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival, NYC Downtown Short Film Festival, California Women’s Film Festival, Sacramento International Film Festival and Hollyshorts Monthly Screening and many others.
Making this film was an incredible journey. We had full faith in the team we assembled and we gave them the freedom to work their magic. That was very important to us, to trust that each and every person was able to bring something special to the table, and that they had an open space to contribute to the storytelling. We wrote, filmed, and edited the film in the span of one year. Every single person that contributed to the film elevated it to another level, from direction all the way to color correction. We wanted the process to feel like a full collaboration, and it was. We’re very proud of that.
Photos from the set of Leap.
The character, Jane, is a composite of many women that I know, but is partly based on a friend, a survivor of sexual abuse, someone who is so strong that you would never see her battles, yet privately she constantly struggled with control in her life. An outsider may have thought she was promiscuous, or “cold,” but I’m hoping that by telling a small part of her story we can see the many layers to the human experience. Things are hardly ever what they seem on the surface. Our society is currently suffering from a lack of empathy and I feel as artists we have to work to counter that.
On that note our director, Marlo Bernier, has stated that “Leap offers us as a society an opportunity to cut open a subject that is one of the least pleasant things with which we have to tragically deal – sexual abuse. And in so doing, perhaps the hope is that we’ll continue talking about it and ultimately bring it to its end. And if we have any chance at making this happen, we as a community of people must continue the dialogue and bring the secrets that kill out of the darkness and into the light.”
Ultimately, we want to use ‘Leap’ to promote discussion and healing; and raise awareness around the staggering statistics of violence, rape and sexual assault that even today aren’t widely understood. Perhaps one of the most sobering statistics is that 1 in 6 American women have been a victim of attempted or completed rape. So we think it’s important to share Jane’s message of struggle turned perseverance, hopefully giving a voice to the voiceless.