Principal photography began this week on Make It Happen, the sizzling sexy romantic dance drama written by Duane Adler (Save the Last Dance, Step Up) and produced by The Mayhem Project, with distribution in North America by The Weinstein Company. The film is being shot on location in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, from August 8 until September 17, 2007.
Make It Happen stars Mary Elizabeth Winstead (Live Free or Die Hard, Final Destination 3) in the role of Lauryn, a young woman from a small town who moves to Chicago with dreams of entering the Chicago School of Music and Dance. But after rejection and a series of misfortunes she finds herself working in a burlesque club. The club proves to be a place of conflict and self-discovery, helping Lauryn to realize that even though plans may change, dreams never do.
Tessa Thompson (“Hidden Palms”) plays Dana, who befriends Lauryn after her failed audition and helps her find her way in Chicago. Julissa Bermudez (The Startup, All You’ve Got) plays Carmen, Ruby’s lead dancer who doesn’t like to be shown up by anyone, especially Lauryn. Riley Smith (Radio) plays Russ, the musical director at Ruby’s who captures the heart of Lauryn, and who dreams of making his own music.
Make It Happen is being directed by Darren Grant. With a catalogue of more than 130 music videos and award-winning commercials to his credit, Grant has worked with top music artists like Jewel, Destiny’s Child and Jay-Z, bringing his own signature style and dramatic instincts to their videos. Grant made his feature directorial debut in the 2005 Lionsgate release Diary of a Mad Black Woman, which grossed more than $50 million US at the domestic box office.
Also added to the production talent for Make It Happen is Director of Photography David Claessen, who worked with Grant on Diary of a Mad Black Woman. Production Designer Ray Kluga has worked on such films as Just My Luck, 13 Going on 30, and Coyote Ugly.