a short film about the love we choose and the love that chooses us
Fortunate Country, a modern adaptation of the 1913 novel O Pioneers! by Willa Cather, was written and produced by Kristin Jordan Tripe. This unconventional love story, co-directed with Julia Hinson, stars Kristin in its leading role, and tells the story of two young women in the rural Midwest. In this naturalistic film, the expectations of what it means to be a woman in small town Nebraska collide with the unlikely love that blossoms between two friends. Fortunate Country explores the struggles that come with feeling out of place, the heartbreak of star-crossed lovers, and the comfort that can come from a clear Nebraska sky.
Fortunate Country won Best Nebraska Short Film at the Omaha Film Festival in March 2020 and has screened at many film festivals across the U.S.
WATCH THE TRAILER:
Fortunate Country explores LGBTQ issues, identity, finding your truth, the nostalgia of home, and taking risks for the things we want most. The short film was written, produced, directed, and performed entirely by Nebraskan women.
We shot the film 90 miles from Willa Cather’s childhood home in Red Cloud Nebraska, aiming to capture the unspoiled beauty of country life. It was important to us to reflect the quiet oppression that runs deep in this part of the country in contrast to the open landscape and simple life. The conflict of the story is subtle, and exists in the uncomplicated question of confronting the truth about oneself.
We had a very diverse cast and crew of women, people of color, and members of the LGBTQ community. We were proud to have a cast of actors who were all Nebraska natives and our crew hailed from the area including local crew from Kearney and nearby Omaha and Kansas City. We filmed quickly and with the generosity of organizations and volunteers from the area. We feel passionately about pushing forward stories about rural life into the mainstream to eradicate stereotypes and enhance public understanding of the country life that we hold so dear.
CO-DIRECTOR: JULIA HINSON
Julia Hinson is a theatre artist and filmmaker living in Memphis, TN. Originally hailing from Nebraska, she is committed to telling stories in and about the middle of the country. The majority of her career has been spent doing theatrical-based devised and immersive work. Her work has been seen at the Edinburgh Fringe, New York City Fringe, Camden Fringe, Kansas City Fringe, Sao Paolo Festival in Siauliai, Lithuania and Three Branch Festival in London. Julia also works as an acting coach, EFL teacher and dream interpreter.
DIRECTOR OF PHOTOGRAPHY: JOHN P BEATTY
John P. Beatty is a cinematographer based in Kansas City, Missouri and is originally from Kearney, Nebraska. His work spans genres such as commercials, music videos, narrative films, and documentaries. He has contributed to films and music videos that have screened at festivals and won awards all across the country and has shot in almost every major market in the United States. John has been interested in photography since he was a young child; his camera was with him wherever he went, something that still remains true today.
“Fortunate country, that is one day to receive hearts like Alexandra's into its bosom, to give them out again in the yellow wheat, in the rustling corn, in the shining eyes of youth!”
-Willa Cather, O Pioneers!