Growing Pains

Dallas, Texas | Film Short


Ethan Gueck

2 Campaigns | Texas, United States

Green Light

This campaign raised $1,500 for production. Follow the filmmaker to receive future updates on this project.

19 supporters | followers

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Growing Pains is a story about how young adults cope with the struggles they go through. It's a coming of age story that follows Noah and Emma who ditch their summer job and discover that they aren't the only ones with a hard life. Help us tell their story to inspire others to tell their own!

About The Project

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

Mission Statement

Our film is about young adults, the struggles they go through, and how they cope with those issues. It tells teens it's okay to not be okay and spreads a message of love and acceptance to help young adults realize they are not alone. We take true stories and amplify them to make a greater impact.

The Story


Noah and Emma spontaneously ditch their summer job and embark on a disastrous road trip in search of a break from the mundane. Through their crazy adventures and discussions about their pasts, they discover neither one of them has the perfect life they thought the other to have. 


Purpose & Motivation

Growing Pains is inspired by personal real-life events. Some of these events happened to us, and some of them happened to you. A few months ago we reached out to you for help. We created a Google Form with one simple question: What is the hardest thing you went through as a young adult? Nearly 100 of you were generous enough to fill out this form and you shared with us some intimately personal stories. For this, we are extremely grateful. The stories you told us became Growing Pains. 

While we are not able to include every story in the film, we are able to include one resounding message. You are not alone.




Noah is a kind, charming, shy young man. He always wants to make other people happy and will often sacrifice his own happiness in these efforts. 


Emma is loud, sarcastic, short-tempered, and blunt. She has had a difficult past and her family means everything to her.




Daniel Reynolds (Noah)



Daniel's application blew us away. With a Master of Science degree in Aeronautics & Astronautics from MIT and a Bachelor of Science degree in Astronautical Engineering from the United States Air Force Academy, Daniel is a rocket scientist with a passion for acting!

During the zoom callback session, Daniel always had us laughing our heads off. We can't wait to have a blast with him on set!

Olivia Cinquepalmi (Emma)



Olivia has a BFA in Acting from Oklahoma City University. Her demo reel and resume speak for themselves.  Olivia is an actor with a passion for honest, empathetic storytelling. In addition to acting, Olivia has a huge heart for children's theatre and arts integration in education. She believes that everyone deserves to have the proper exposure to the arts, and the positive impact they have on our lives.


Visuals & Tone

For this project, we want to focus on visual storytelling: conveying how characters feel through camera movement, lighting, and space instead of just dialogue.

 Here are some things we wish to accomplish:

- Motivated movement

- Static shots when we want the film to feel still.

- Giving time to study the character’s face and the environment.

- Focus on having more intentional angles, not just the simple coverage of wide, medium close up, close up, etc.

- A variety of focal lengths.

Here is an idea of what the film may look and feel like:

Also, check out our Tone Reel in the media section of this page to get an idea of what we want the film to feel like!


Why Now? (COVID-19)

While being locked away in our houses during the COVID-19 pandemic, many of us have felt alone. Some have felt this more than others. This story needs to be told now more than ever because of the current world environment. Now is the time that people need to hear the message that they are not alone. 

As the world slowly begins to reopen, we are ready to start production and create this film! We will be taking extra precautions to ensure that everyone on set stays safe and healthy. Some of these precautions include social distancing when possible, face masks, taking the temperature of cast and crew daily, and sanitization of props and set dressings before and in between use. For a full list of the minimum health protocols we will be taking please click here.


How You Can Help?

Pledge! Anything that you can contribute to our project will help us reach our goal. We appreciate you!

Spread the word! The more people that know about our film the better! We want to build the audience ahead of time!

Share on social media! If you think what we're doing is cool, share it with your friends on social media. You never know who might click!




Use the WishList to Pledge cash and Loan items - or - Make a pledge by selecting an Incentive directly.

Food and Craft

Costs $400

We have to feed our cast & crew for the duration of production. Man shall not live by bread alone!

Production Expensies

Costs $300

We need equipment, props, and set design to make this story feel as real as possible!

Film Festivals

Costs $250

We want to take our film beyond the academic purpose and showcase it alongside other filmmakers!


Costs $150

We've found some perfect locations for our film. Unfortunately, not all of them are free.


Costs $300

Always prevent accidents! But sometimes things happen... and we have to be prepared!


Costs $100

Some of us are local, and some of them are not. We need to get the best of the best together!

Cash Pledge

Costs $0

About This Team

Ethan has loved creating his entire life. It started with making model rocket launchers out of PVC pipe, small cars powered by a single mousetrap, and endless amounts of paper airplanes. When his late grandfather, Jim Maxwell, let him borrow one of his cameras for school, Ethan's passion for film was born. Ethan loves telling stories through film. He wants to create films that make an audience feel something. It is his desire to not only create an incredible experience for the viewer during the film but to also spark conversations and community afterward. 


Darnell Robinson is an accomplished Actor and Producer. He has been the recipient of Two Dallas Summer Musical Awards and 1 Shmidt and Jones Award. Darnell has been Acting for an extensive amount of time. He has a love and passion for creating films/theatre and potentially acting within. Producing is something that is very interesting to Darnell. Darnell is compulsive about numbers, schedules, and budgets, but also loves creating theatre, and so producing was a perfect avenue. This is Exactly why Darnell is currently furthering his education at NYU Tisch Drama with two current minors in Producing and Business Entertainment Media Technology. 


Alexa May is multi-media artist specializing in film, photo, and graphic design. She thanks her imaginative childhood for shaping her passion for telling eccentric and raw stories. This past year, she was named the 2019-2020 Women in Film Suzanne Dooley Scholar. Her projects have been showcased and won awards on platforms such as DIFF, Best of Fests Dallas, AAHSFF, and the Frame of Mind TV Program. Alongisde pursuing a double major in Film Production and Creative Advertising, Alexa enjoys working as a content creator for SMU Social Media. She is excited to help bring “Growing Pains” to life as the Director of Photography.

Current Team