“Found In Eagle Rock,” is a new feature film by Joe Lombard, a local filmmaker whose work has appeared in the Buzz, which examines how gentrification unravels the fabric of a community, as seen through the lives of one family.
In his first full length feature, Lombard’s narrative follows three young artists struggling to launch their careers against the backdrop of a changing neighborhood with shifting alliances to the past. Conflict arises when two aspiring young filmmakers find themselves competing to be the authentic voice of Eagle Rock; one who grew up in the neighborhood, the other a new resident who views the neighborhood like a documentarian.
Pablo Sanchez, a local artist who grew up on Eagle Rock, is outraged when outsider Will Andersen, 21, moves into the neighborhood and decides to cast Pablo’s younger brother, Manny, in his film. When Pablo confronts Will about exploiting Manny, the neighborhood quickly takes sides and is nearly torn apart.
A side plot features Pablo’s childhood friend, Kat, facing her own challenges to validate herself in the community of West LA gallery owners and art collectors.
Set in Eagle Rock, which has experienced rapid gentrification in the last half decade, the film taps into the frustration of locals faced with rising rents and controversial municipal politics that seem to favor development over the local community.
“The film comes from my own experiences as a resident of Eagle Rock,” said Lombard. “I see the displacement of people in the neighborhood firsthand.
“I’ve been there when some restaurants turn away Latino patrons, and it’s creating a great deal of animosity,” said Lombard. “We want our film to highlight the issues local residents face. But we also see the other side of the issue as new residents too, so I am hoping the film will illustrate both perspectives.”
The film is drawn from Lombard’s experiences as a transplant from the Midwest. Lombard, who grew up in a white middle class suburb, moved to Eagle Rock a year ago to start his own film career after graduating from Art Center College of Design in Pasadena.
Lombard is joined by Tommy Martinez who plays Pablo, Adrian Solis as Manny, Sofia Domingues as Gloria Sanchez and June Schreiner as Kat. The Executive Producer is Josh Picus and Jameson Carr is Director of Photography.
The film’s team has launched a crowd funding campaign on Seed and Spark, a specialized funding site for filmmakers, to raise funds to complete the project. The campaign features interesting and unique incentives, including large printed film posters, and invitations to the screening premiere.
Trailers for the film are also available: