Cast & Crew

Melanie Ehrlich

Creator/Writer/Executive Producer/Lead Actor

Melanie Ehrlich is a New York-born actor and filmmaker based in LA.

Melanie plays Helen in The Miseducation of Cameron Post, winner of the U.S. Dramatic Grand Jury Award at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival, and has also appeared on Netflix’s The OA, AwesomenessTV’s My Dead Ex, Ryan Murphy’s Feud: Bette and Joan, FX’s Legion, and in Alexander Payne’s Downsizing. A voice actor as well, Melanie can be heard as lead female protagonist Vella Wilde in surreal RPG YIIK, as well as a number of characters in Disney Junior’s P. King Duckling and Adult Swim Games’ Battle Chef Brigade.

Melanie is the owner/head producer of LTM Productions, a full-service production company that specializes in voice-over production for animation and video games. Under the LTM moniker, she fully cast and directed the voice acting for the game Norse Noir, notable for including veteran voice actors from games like League of Legends, Grand Theft Auto V, Super Smash Bros., and Bioshock Infinite alongside up-and-coming voice-over talent.

Why is this project meaningful to you?
I have been struggling with grief and survivor’s guilt from the suicide of my first boyfriend, Andrew, for nearly half of my lifetime. I felt for too long like I had no one to talk to who would understand what I was feeling or experiencing, and it has impacted every area of my life and development ever since. It is only now, having finally found the right treatment for my own mental health after decades of struggling with depression and anxiety, that I am able not only to find joy in my life after years suffocated by darkness, but to even make this film. It has been just as difficult as it is healing, but my hope is that it can provide some insight and empathy to others, whether they are struggling with suicidal thoughts or know someone who is or who has, and let them know that they are NOT alone. If I can bring even a few people some of the relief I so desperately would’ve wanted in the aftermath of this incredibly traumatic experience, I will consider it a success.

Leah Gottfried: Director

Leah Gottfried is an award-winning director, writer, producer and actor, and founder of Dignity Entertainment – a full-service production company dedicated to creating meaningful visual content. She is the creator of the hit comedic web series Soon By You, which centers on young Orthodox Jews dating in NYC and currently has over 900K views on YouTube, as well as the creator and first graduate of the Film Studies program at Stern College for Women. Her short film The Setup won Best Short Film at the Washington Jewish Film Festival and has screened in numerous film festivals all around the world.

Why is this project meaningful to you?
I’ve always been drawn to stories that were about more than just entertaining. Film is such a beautiful medium for giving people a place to feel less alone, that’s what it’s done for me and as a filmmaker, I want to do that for others. Mental health affects all of us and for those particularly struggling with it, this film will be a much-needed light of hope, reminding you are not alone.

Natalie Procter: Editor

Natalie Procter is the co-creator of That’s Gay, an LGBTQ comedy news segment that challenges the often clueless media portrayal of LGBTQ stereotypes. On That’s Gay, she supervised the full post-production process, including editing, audio finishing, and color correction, and led concept development, graphics, storytelling, and delivery of the show for air. Natalie’s editing experience also includes serving as lead editor for the half-hour show Infomania, a weekly satirical news show, as well as freelance editing work for the comedy website Funny or Die and rock band The Scissor Sisters.

Why is this project meaningful to you?
I currently work as a mental health clinician with clients who struggle with severe mental illness, many of whom have survived a teenage suicide attempt or who know someone who has not survived. It is something that is not addressed as purposefully as possible in the media, and we are still afraid to discuss suicide. The most likely response to a suicidal threat from a teenager is NOTHING. We need to raise awareness around this subject and normalize it to the extent that people feel comfortable discussing it with the children, their friends, and their peers. Working on this film will afford me the opportunity to be part of the solution in a delightfully creative way.

M.W Leitzel: Art Director

M.W Leitzel is a visual storyteller whose video and design work has appeared on CNN, Comedy Central’s The Daily Show, Time Magazine, the Boston International Film Festival and various film festivals and galleries across the country. He has worked with clients such as Dreamworks, Fox, Sony, SEGA, Ford, and many more. Additionally, he has worked with local organizations and mentorship programs to bring the arts to those who need it most in the community.

Why is this project meaningful to you?
There are so many people who suffer silently, and yet many more who won’t get the help they call for, time and time again, before it’s too late. Art not only helps survivors heal, but by being able to provoke questions and emotions that resonate in our past experiences, we might find ourselves more willing to extend a hand to those who need it most.

Jay Tholen: Music Director

Jay Tholen is a game designer, artist, and composer who lives in Braunschweig, Germany with his wife and doggie. Jay is the lead designer of indie adventure games Dropsy and Hypnospace Outlaw. He’s also a prolific solo musician and has released almost 30 genre-bending art-rock EPs and LPs over the last 12 years.

Why is this project meaningful to you?
I only work on creative projects that can make someone’s life better for having experienced them. Danse Macabre is very much this kind of project. The whole thing has me super jazzed: The script is great, Melanie is cool, I get to arrange an incredible piece of music, AND I get to use video game sounds. (Tastefully implemented, of course.) For real though, I’m honored that Melanie has entrusted me with scoring a work that is this intensely personal and can’t wait to begin working with her and her team.

Jen Brucker

Jen is a full-time project management professional and aspiring actor. She is a Jen-of-All-Trades; having worked in retail, broadcast terrestrial radio, pharmaceutical research, film, and as a marketing manager for a fitness education company. When she is not organizing the world around her, she is polishing up her VO reel, building her website, working on the launch of a blog/podcast with a friend, and studying graphic design.

Gabrielle Keller

Tim Rodriguez

Tim has been involved with interactive digital and industrial design for over 20 years and found his niche in game development. He is also a publisher, voice actor, musician, and crowdfunding veteran, having run and/or contributed material to 10+ successful Kickstarter campaigns. He has been recognized on the Games 100 list for his work in board games and is a judge and curator for multiple game festivals.

Why is this project meaningful to you?
Many of my best friends deal with mental health issues and so this story hits very close to home for me. As someone who does not personally deal with depression or suicidal thoughts, I feel it’s my own personal responsibility to listen to these experiences and learn how I can help support those who do.

Grace Sin: Supervising Producer

Grace is a producer, director, and voice actor for animation and games. Her work in children’s media has been recognized by the Parent’s Choice Awards, the Webby Awards, and included in Apple’s App Store Best of Year selection.

Additional production staff

BrettT

Brett Thevenot: Webmaster / Graphic Designer

Brett is an award-winning graphic designer, corporate web designer & visual designer, corporate eLearning designer and 2D animator/illustrator. BFA/MFA in 19th-century inky mechanismus. Digital velociraptor and grandmaster at Photoshop & Illustrator.

Why is this project meaningful to you?
As someone who has dealt with depression since my teens it helps me to help others take this seriously and to try to reach out to as many people as possible to help and help inform.

Jeremy Einhorn

Jeremy Einhorn is a Boston-born, Montreal-educated and LA-based actor, voice actor, writer, singer, and linguist. He has acted in the Montreal independent film Lover’s Lost, directed by Alexander Kasstan, Everfall by Ashton Avila, and co-hosts a podcast about zombie movies called Podcast of the Living Dead. Apart from his other creative work, he holds a BA in Linguistics and Hispanic Studies from McGill University and has lived and worked around the world, including, Spain, France, Argentina, and Peru.

Grace Fiamengo

Grace Fiamengo is the mother of two talented young men. One is a writer and voice actor, and the other a musician, composer, and actor. Raising these two helped her discover her spiritual gift: organizing the creative mind. Grace’s passion is assisting creative projects with all things organizational.

Why is this project meaningful to you?
When I was in middle school my best friend was murdered. The counseling I received back then consisted of one sentence, “if you need someone to talk to, we are here for you”. There was no follow-up after that, even though looking back now I can see I was exhibiting behavior that cried out for it. As a middle and then high school student, I did not know how to ask for help, and probably did not even realize I needed it. This movie speaks to me because it addresses the grieving process of the people left behind. Everybody suffers loss at some point in their life, but some of us get stuck. It is my hope that this movie encourages the ‘stuck’ people out of the darkness and inspires others to be more aware of their needs.

Loretta Golden

Loretta Golden is an audio/video freelancer. She holds an associate’s degree in Radio and Television and is working towards a bachelor’s in Communications. She also works at F.R.E.E. which supports college students with disabilities, as well as interning at the university radio station as Public Service Announcements Coordinator. Loretta has also spent time volunteering for community non-profit organizations and working in collaboration with others in the radio and television fields. Additionally, she is certified in Strategies for Crisis Intervention and Prevention (SKIP) and completed a national certificate program in Mental Health First Aid.

Why is this project meaningful to you?
While in high school I knew a few friends who were contemplating suicide and came to find out that some had already attempted suicide, but never completed as someone intervened. One event that comes to mind is, while spending time with a close friend, I heard noise from another room and decided to investigate, only to find him with a rope around his neck and standing on a chair. By making a noise, I think, in his own way, reaching out to me for help that day. I was glad that I was able to intervene that day. I know not everyone is so lucky.

SunMok Hwang

Sun Mok Hwang (Michael) does whatever needs to be done. He has previously worked on sets as a camera operator, boom operator and sound mixer camera assistant, production assistant, stunt coordinator, and slate guy. No job is too small. He has also dabbled in script writing and photography.

Why is this project meaningful to you?
This is a very personal project for a good friend of mine, and so I look forward to helping and seeing how it comes together, from idea to screen. How this artist’s memories and thoughts of the event and its aftermath, search for understanding, and years of healing come together and translate into this work of art.

Eunsea Min

Eunsea Min was born and raised in South Korea. Ever since Eunsea wrote her first song in the late 2000s, her life has been an interesting adventure. Eunsea earned a Bachelor’s degree in songwriting at Berklee College of Music in 2017, and now studies at the USC Thornton School of Music, pursuing a Master’s degree in Music Industry.

Why is this project meaningful to you?
Although suicidal thought has dwelled near me throughout a major part of my life, I still can’t dare to say that I understand why people decide to leave. I also can’t even imagine what it would be like for the ones who are left behind. I guess they might be the ones who endlessly struggle to give closure to a story that can never be finished. I hope this project will be healing for people who have similar experiences.

Nicholas Patrella

Nicholas Patrella has dipped his hands in many projects over the years as an actor, writer, and producer. He has narrated over twenty audiobooks including the Detective Byone series by Ricardo M. Fleshmen, Troubleshooters by Ian Thomas Healy, and volumes 2 and 3 of the fantasy/romance series, Dark Order of the Dragon by Sandra Bischoff. He also worked at AM 1460 WVOX in New Rochelle, NY as a producer and board operator, and hosted his own on-air show called The Drawing Board, where he talked about animated series, particularly their creators, wrote and produced short audio plays for air, and interviewed different voiceover artists (including Melanie, in an amusing twist of fate!) Check out his radio work at thedrawingboardshow.com.

Arthur Rehak

Arthur Rehak was born in the Peruvian jungle and raised in the American Rust Belt. Arthur is a systems engineer and aspiring actor and writer.

Why is this project meaningful to you?
This project matters because I have personally been affected by this issue – not just by the incident itself, but by the inability to heal from it, because it isn’t discussed. I hope that by participating in this film, we open the door for someone else’s healing process.

Mary Taft-McPhee

Mary Taft-McPhee was raised in Minnesota, paid taxes in Brooklyn and Oakland, and now lives on a ranch in Port Orchard, Washington. She is a horseshoer, voice actor, finance professional, data scientist and work in progress.

Why is this project meaningful to you?
I lost my mom to suicide eleven years ago, and it changed our family forever. After she passed, folks came out of the woodwork to share their stories with me and let me know I wasn’t alone. I’m proud to be working on this project and speaking honestly about what we’ve lost in the hope that it can help other survivors.

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