DBEDT News Release: CHRISTMAS MOVIE WRITTEN BY CREATIVE LAB HAWAII SCREENWRITING FELLOW PREMIERES ON LIFETIME TELEVISION NETWORK DECEMBER 23RDPosted on Dec 22, 2021 in Latest Department News, Newsroom
HONOLULU – As a writer, Hawai‘i Island’s Amy Bircher found you don’t need a snow-covered landscape to create a successful Christmas movie for television. Her screenplay “Rebuilding a Dream Christmas” was produced by American Cinema International and will air on Lifetime Network tomorrow night, December 23, 2021. Hulu, Fubo, Sling and Philo platforms are also carrying the movie.
Bircher, a graduate fellow of the State of Hawai‘i’s Creative Lab Hawai‘i (CLH) Screenwriting Immersive program in 2017 workshopped her holiday inspired screenplay under direction of Michael Palmieri, Executive Director, and lead mentor for the CLH Media programs.
“The confidence, skills and business knowledge I learned from Michael and the CLH program has provided me an incredible opportunity to stay in Hawai‘i while pursuing my passion as a screenwriter” says Bircher who was born and raised on Hawai‘i Island in Kona. “CLH connected me to like-minded entrepreneurs, understanding how the business works, protecting my IP and networking opportunities thru major media markets like American Film Market. From business plan and pitch to eventually the acquisition of my work, I was able to become the writer I wanted to be.”
With two other Lifetime movies under her belt, the mother of two juggled family, day job and her screenwriting career with a laser focus on making her part-time passion become a full-time job.
“Rebuilding a Dream Christmas” was filmed in July 2020, in a small town in Kansas called Weston. Since this was in the middle of lockdown and local businesses were hurting, the movie brought life to the community, good jobs and restaurant business. “It brings me so much joy to know that a story I created out of love brought happiness to a town when times were tough” adds the Hawai’i screenwriter.
Bircher has just completed another holiday movie set in Hawai‘i with a fellow writer/producer she met through CLH programs. “At the end of my writer’s immersive presentation in 2017 I had promised that I would make a Christmas in Hawai‘i movie so it will be amazing to deliver on that promise.“ I have one script under review by a major network, and I’m about to start writing a family movie that’s set in Hawai‘i” says Bircher.
Creative Lab Hawai‘i program is a multi-tiered workforce development program operated by the State of Hawai‘i’s Creative Industries Division, a division of the Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism (DBEDT). Call for submissions for the 2022-23 CLH sessions which begin in spring 2022 and will be posted in the first quarter of the year. Visit creativelab.hawaii.gov for more information.
“We are proud of the trajectory Amy has taken on her path and her commitment to writing while balancing her home life” says Georja Skinner, chief officer, Creative Industries. “It is possible in today’s remote-work world to connect our creative to the mainstream music and entertainment industries globally, creating new revenue streams which were out of reach before.”
Launched to address a gap in business skills training for creative entrepreneurs, CLH was founded in 2012 to build industry mentorship and access to decision makers with a focus on expanding Hawai‘i’s creative talent in both independent narrative storytelling as well as above-the-line talent in screenwriting, producing, playwriting, animation, and multiplatform storytelling. CID’s successful CLH Music Immersive managed by Charles Brotman has placed hundreds of original songs from Hawai‘i artists, exceeding $500,000 in revenues for them collectively in mainstream commercials, films, and television series placements.
For more information about “Rebuilding a Dream Christmas” on Lifetime, check local listings or visit Rebuilding a Dream Christmas | Lifetime (mylifetime.com).
About Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism (DBEDT)
DBEDT is Hawaiʻi’s resource center for economic and statistical data, business development opportunities, energy and conservation information, and foreign trade advantages. DBEDT’s mission is to achieve a Hawaiʻi economy that embraces innovation and is globally competitive, dynamic and productive, providing opportunities for all Hawaiʻi’s citizens. Through its attached agencies, the department fosters planned community development, creates affordable workforce housing units in high-quality living environments, and promotes innovation sector job growth.
About Creative Industries Division (CID)
CID, a division within DBEDT, is the state’s lead agency dedicated to advocating for and accelerating the growth of Hawaiʻi’s Creative Economy. Through initiatives, program development, and strategic partnerships, the division and its branches implement activities to expand the business development, global export and investment capacity of Hawaiʻi’s arts, culture, music, film, literary, publishing, digital and new media industries.
About Creative Lab Hawaiʻi Program (CLH)
The Creative Lab Hawai’i Program was founded in 2012 by the Hawaiʻi State Department of Business, Economic, Development and Tourism (DBEDT)’s Creative Industries Division to accelerate the growth of Hawaiʻi’s creative entrepreneurs through immersive, hands-on training in broadband/new media, producing, screenwriting, interactive media, music and indigenous storytelling. The CLH Program, a key facet of Hawaiʻi’s creative economy, is developing an ecosystem to increase export, attract investment and build the State’s creative entrepreneurial capacity in media and music. The CLH Program features three program components: 1) Immersive Programs; 2) Ideation Workshops; and 3) Public Keynotes. Website: creativelab.hawaii.gov
Creative Industries Division
Department of Business, Economic Development & Tourism