Dani Barker, originally from Salmon Arm, is working with others in the New York City film industry to bring a script she wrote to life as a feature film called Follow Her. (Photo Contributed)

Salmon Arm actor, writer takes stab at thriller for silver screen

Now living in New York City, Dani Barker wrote and is starring in Follow Her.

A thriller film dealing with timely themes is a passion project for Dani Barker, a Salmon Arm native who is now making her mark on the movie business in New York City.

Barker wrote the film, entitled Follow Her, and also plays the lead role. She is working with award-winning director Sylvia Caminer and cinematographer Luke Geissbuhler. Starring opposite Barker is Luke Cook.

The story follows an aspiring actress who takes increasing risks to bust men posting sketchy jobs aimed at young women on internet classifieds, all while secretly filming it for a popular live stream show.

For her next episode, she is hired to write the ending of a screenplay. Unlike most of the men that post jobs, Tom the co-writer is exceptionally alluring and Barker’s character, Jess, is immediately drawn to his charm.

She follows him to a cabin in the woods where tensions between them build and the work on the screenplay becomes a tense game of cat and mouse with life or death stakes.

Barker said her film aims to make a statement on the way people measure their success through online popularity and the accompanying loss of control and sense of self.

Read More: Okanagan-Shuswap weather: Gusty winds and scattered clouds.

Read More: Driver narrowly avoids hitting Granfondo cyclists in South Okanagan on Sunday morning

After starting to develop the script approximately a year and a half ago, Barker’s excitement to complete the film has only grown.

“This has become my baby project now,” she said.

The film is part way through principle photography with all of the scenes taking place at a secluded property in upstate New York shot in March and April of this year. Once shooting and post production are complete, Barker said they will be submitting the film to film festivals. Barker and her collaborators are also seeking the backing of film distributors, particularly those who specialize in horror and thriller films.

She said a screening in Salmon Arm is also a possibility.

Barker said the process of obtaining money to make the film has often been challenging and stressful. Lacking investment from a production company, friends and family of Barker and others working on the film have come aboard as investors.

Although they had heard plenty of stories of the challenges of making it in show business, Barker said her family was very supportive as she left Salmon Arm to pursue an acting career that took her first to Toronto and then to New York. Barker said her parents, who still reside in the Shuswap have also gotten behind Follow Her.

Read More: Gasoline companies to speak at public inquiry into B.C. pump prices

Read More: In photos and video: Harbour Front Cruise car show at Marine Park

Growing up in Salmon Arm, Barker was a cast member in several Shuswap Theatre and R.J. Haney dinner theatre productions. She said she was also encouraged to enter her field by the theatre teachers she learned from while at Salmon Arm Secondary. She said she was close with Steve Heal, a theatre teacher who she worked as an assistant director for on one of the school’s productions.

“He was one of my biggest cheerleaders,” Barker said.

Barker said she hopes the film will be completed by early 2020 and that she has other projects, including a sequel to Follow Her, featuring a larger cast of characters, in the works.


@SalmonArm
jim.elliot@saobserver.net

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Salmon Arm’s Sebastien Archambault joins Humboldt Broncos

Defenceman played last two seasons with Junior B Sicamous Eagles

Shuswap artists invited to bring the noise

Sound machine exhibit planned for Salmon Arm Art Gallery in 2020

Salmon Arm thrift stores temporarily refuse donations to keep up with glut

Too much stuff for storage space, staff shortage, main reasons for sporadic closures

CSRD to assess rural Sicamous, South Shuswap housing needs

UBCM to provide $33,000 through 2019 Housing Needs Reports initiative

Shuswap woman protests for family court reform

Goals include increased resources for people who wish to represent themselves

VIDEO: Title of 25th Bond movie is ‘No Time to Die’

The film is set to be released in April 2020

Huawei executive’s defence team alleges Canadians were ‘agents’ of the FBI

eng’s arrest at Vancouver’s airport has sparked a diplomatic crisis between Canada and China

Trans Mountain gives contractors 30 days to get workers, supplies ready for pipeline

Crown corporation believes the expansion project could be in service by mid-2022

Police watchdog investigating two officers after Langley teen’s suspected overdose

According to IIO, two officers were deployed to help Carson Crimeni but did not locate him before he died

Teamwork brings injured South Okanagan osprey back to its nest

A South Okanagan Osprey is back with its family after injuring itself

On vaccines, abortion, Goop, doctor Jen Gunter says: ‘I have a duty to speak up’

She speaks out on menstruation, the wellness industry and vaccines

Okanagan-Shuswap weather: sunny, high UV

Today’s weather forecast

RCMP catch ‘erratic’ driving thieves; upon release steal mountain bike

The incident involved a police chase, taser, and a destroyed vehicle

New study suggests autism overdiagnosed: Canadian expert

Laurent Mottron: ‘Autistic people we test now are less and less different than typical people’

Most Read