File this one under things that make you go hmm…

Some 4 years in the making, The Garden is writer/director Michael Montgomery’s USC graduate thesis film; one that he began working on in 2009, was able to fund by maxing out his student loans (the old fashioned way), and that he previously expressed intent to premiere at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, after which he said planned to expand on it, and turn the film into a feature.

It never did premiere at the Sundance Film Festival, my research tells me. 

Calling it a passion project, Montgomery’s production team includes Anthony Hanna – producer; Nick Andrus – producer; and Bryan McClure – producer.

Here’s how they describe the film:

The Garden is inspired by creation stories, such as Adam and Eve, as well as science and history. It strives to paint an accurate portrait of life at the dawn of modern civilization, a time when mankind no longer simply lived off nature as it provided, but instead took efforts to alter nature for their own survival (such as irrigation and agriculture). It’s the time when that very first spark of imagination tempted our ancestors to be more than what they had been, tempted them to see the world differently, and gave a few of them the courage to stand up for a brave new future. But at what cost?

After successfully raising over $20,000 in 2011, the filmmakers were able to finally begin completion of the film, which they hope will highlight what our ancestors developed thousands of years ago that are crucial to modern civilization, and what we could learn by understanding their struggles.

It’s time for something new and interesting in Hollywood, not something that you see every day,” they added.

I couldn’t find any recent updates on the film; the last was in mid 2012, when the filmmaker posted the following:

We are about ready to film pickups! We have spent the last few months editing and now we are ready to fill in the last holes. We’ll be going up to Hungry Valley this Tuesday the 17th for one day only to pickup some closeups that we’re missing.

We’re anticipating a quick turnaround, and we’ll cut in this last footage later next week so that by May 1st we will have picture lock! This is quite a positive step for us, and has been a long time coming, I’m excited that this project keeps moving forward and after seeing the film cut together, I’m even more hopeful and excited that its future will be bright and beautiful as it makes its way into its festival run.

Our first submission will be to Sundance in August, which gives us from May until then to finish all the rest of the work, which includes sound design, music, and coloring. So thank you all for your patience, you’re gifts and DVDs of the film will be along this fall once everything is wrapped up. In the meantime, your encouragement and prayers are most helpful, and I thank you all once again for your support!

No contact info for the filmmaker yet, but I did find a Facebook page for the project, which I sent an inquiry to, so if I get a reply, I’ll update this post.

It’s a film I’m intrigued by and would like to see the end product.

A trailer for the film follows below:

The Garden – Trailer from Michael Montgomery on Vimeo.