Bad Kids

Cape Girardeau, Cape Girardeau County | Film Short

Thriller, Crime

Joseph Matarrese

1 Campaigns | California, United States

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This campaign raised $7,612 for production. Follow the filmmaker to receive future updates on this project.

74 supporters | followers

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Bad Kids is a short film about a gang of teenagers in the 1950's. The leader of the gang, Danny, has a deadly secret. Mikey and the rest of the group need to decide if they are going to follow Danny, or hang him out to dry before he turns on them...

About The Project

  • The Story
  • Wishlist
  • Updates
  • The Team
  • Community

The Story

Bad Kids is about a gang of teenagers in the 1950's and the struggle between doing the right thing or doing what is easy.


Austin Thomas Wood has written a compelling feature length film following Mikey, one of the teenagers in Danny's gang. When Danny accidentally kills a rival gang member and Mikey realizes that he and his friends are now accomplices to murder. Mikey must decide between turning himself in to stop Danny, or walking away and let Danny get away with murder...


Before we take on the enormous task of producing a feature film period piece, we have decided to make a short version of the film.


The short follows the group of teenagers in the moments directly after the accidental murder. Mikey and group discuss their options while Danny struggle to maintain control of the group and the situation that is spinning wildly out of control.


We plan on shooting the short film in Cape Girardeau, MO where the main street is still as it was in the 1950's. With the help from the River City Rodders, we will be able to feature classic cars and hot rods from the 1950's.


We are going to make this film with a very small cast and crew, all of whom have worked together before. We plan to road trip from California to Cage Girardeau, bringing out the small amount of gear we need and shooting in a real location. Sticking out actors in the middle of a real location will bring a level of authenticity to the performance that we believe is necessary in telling this particular story.


We are very excited to bring Bad Kids to life and hope that the vision expressed in the short film will capture the audience's imagination and interest, leading to the feature film version.


Thank you for all the support!


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Grip & Lighting Equipment

Costs $200

We will need lighting to make it look beautiful, especially because the entire movie takes place at night!

Cash Pledge

Costs $0

Mini Van

Costs $800

We are driving our small crew/cast and equipment out from Los Angeles to Cape Girardeau, MO and will need to rent minivans for the week.

Mini Van

Costs $800

We will need two minivans to fit our small crew, equipment, suitcases, and snacks on our road trip to Cape Girardeau, MO for a weeks rental.


Costs $1,000

It's 1900 miles from CA to Cape Girardeau and we need to drive our crew/gear in two vans there and back. Help us not run out of gas in Texas

Production Insurance

Costs $1,200

We want to be safe and responsible and cover our cast, crew, and equipment with production insurance. Safety first!

Hotel Rooms

Costs $1,050

We will need to rent rooms to stay in both on our cross country road trip (6 nights) and in Cape Girardeau (2 nights)


Costs $200

An army marches on its stomach and we need to feed our crew lunch and we want to make sure we feed them good healthy food. Yum!

Craft Services Food

Costs $150

Because we work such long hours, we want to make sure everyone gets healthy snacks to keep their energy and spirits up! Fruits and veggies!


Costs $300

We need to outfit 4 actors in 1950's clothing! And they need to look realistic! Yay for period pieces!

Mannequin for Dead Body

Costs $200

The characters have a terrible secret. A dead body in the trunk! It needs to feel real so we need a real dead body! Kidding! We need a prop.

Travel Meals

Costs $800

Our cast/crew will get hungry on the drive out and we don't want anyone cranky on a road trip because of an empty tummy!


Costs $300

We are shooting in beautiful Cape Girardeau, MO and to make sure we are allowed to, we need permits! Ahh the paperwork never ends...

About This Team

(Left to right: Austin Thoms Wood, Joseph Matarrese, Phillip Matarrese, Mandi Reno)


Austin Thomas Wood



Austin studied film at Southern Illinois University where founded the Movie Camera Militia, a filmmaker’s collective to conceive original content, in various genres, all made with the goals of sharing, learning, and creating.


After moving to Los Angeles, Austin has focused on writing and directing. Such projects include short films: Red Creek; Vera; and Still Life. Austin has continued to gain experience working with other filmmakers on feature films, television shows, commercials, and music videos and has assisted on larger productions including Honey Jar and David Fincher's Gone Girl


The Matarrese Brothers



Joseph & Phillip Matarrese are twin brothers and filmmakers from the San Francisco Bay area. Working in film and television for nearly a decade, Joseph and Phillip started their careers in lighting as a key grip and gaffer team. They have worked on films and television shows across the country and around the world. Seeking to produce their own content, the brothers founded Distant Thunder Films in 2008, with their main focus, creating unique and interesting films. They have produced several feature films including Love: As You Like It; Algorithm; Best Friends Forever, and Searching For Fortune. 


Mandi Reno



A native to Southern California, Mandi Reno has worked in both film and television over the last 10 years ranging from small independent features to major network productions. As a freelancer, Mandi has held positions in the production, accounting, and assistant directors departments, and now focuses on Line Producing. Most recently, Mandi works as a sales associate for boutique sales agency PFG Entertainment, servicing delivery for both international and domestic distribution deals with licensing companies. Additionally, Mandi provides budgeting and consulting services for third party companies with feature films in development, ranging from micro and ultra low budget, to theatrical. 


Mandi joined forces with Distant Thunder Films in 2011 to develop and produce their own original content. When they first met, they were working on a movie together and Joe told Mandi he was writing a western. Her response was, "I love westerns! Do you have a producer? Do you have a business plan?" Based on his puzzled look, she knew she was in. The rest is history.  

Current Team