San Francisco, California | Film Short


Jacintha Charles

1 Campaigns | California, United States

Green Light

This campaign raised $12,850 for production. Follow the filmmaker to receive future updates on this project.

103 supporters | followers

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MADHAVI is a film that highlights domestic abuse specifically within the South Asian community where it is complicated and nuanced due to both the acceptance of domestic violence and the stigma associated with divorce. MADHAVI is also a story about a mother, a survivor, and strength and resilience.

About The Project

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

Mission Statement

Our approach to stories as filmmakers are heavily influenced by our lives as BIPOC women. With our experience and skills, we have a platform to shine a light on this important topic and help create an awareness for fellow survivors in the most truthful, thought-provoking and meaningful way.

The Story


Having survived domestic violence in her marriage, Madhavi, once an up and coming classical Indian dance performer, is now a divorcée working at the local supermarket struggling to put the pieces of her and her daughter's life back together. A chance encounter with a former family friend will lead them to a house gathering where the occasion quickly turns ugly as Madhavi is forced to relive her violent and painful past, causing her to respond in the most honest and powerful way - one that will break new ground in her relationship with her daughter.




MADHAVI is a proof-of-concept short film that highlights domestic abuse specifically within the South Asian community. We wanted to bring to life a character that wasn't defined by the marriage and domestic violence she escaped, but by her strength and fortitude in carving an unknown path forward. 

​It is important to talk about the aftermath of abuse. How do survivors cope in daily life? What is lost and what is gained? Within the Indian community, the shame that you bring to family and friends by leaving an abusive marriage can be just as traumatic as the abuse itself, if not more.

We want to show people that any survivor's journey to freedom, happiness and healing, isn’t always clear cut once they get out of the traumatic physical space. Months and years of self-worth, dignity and confidence have been stripped away from them so you can imagine the kind of loneliness and depression they fall into. It's easy to say or ask them to just walk away, but the issue is so much more complex than that. Especially when children are involved. When they finally do, starting a new chapter in their lives is mentally, physically and emotionally challenging  - from living in shelters to taking on extra jobs or shifts to pay the bills and put food on the table and many times, having to deal with Immigration. 

With MADHAVI, we want to present a story of Resilience, Strength and Hope. 

If this film can open one mind or lead one person to make that all important call, then it is the power of another step closer towards the right direction. It is our teams' hope that we can spark conversations within our communities and show support and solidarity for anyone who may feel voiceless and alone.




Jacintha Charles and Lisa Yadao have a lot in common.

They are both Women Filmmakers.

They are both Women of Color.

They are both Domestic Violence survivors.

It is easy to harp on the hardships and effects each of these factors brought upon them but instead, Jacintha and Lisa used them to evolve as people, as professionals and strengthened their resolve to make impactful work that can create opportunites and change.

Having worked together on the Award-Winning short film, The Gift, they felt a kinship from the start and found out very quickly how they each wanted to share stories of Women and and Minorities with the world by highlighting their strengths while fighting their weakness; showcasing their beauty while dealing with their pain. They want to create an awareness to help people understand life through a different lens. Madhavi is their second to many more collaborations to come and they cannot wait to share this story with you.

Jacintha was recently selected as a Quarterfinalist for the Stowe Story Lab Program 2021 in collaboration with the Final Draft Fellowship with this screenplay.



Our starting goal of $15,000 will cover some of the cost of Pre-Production and Production including :

Cast and Crew (check us out under The Team!)

A dedicated team of professionals who are not just good at what they do, but who all believe in this story. 


Equipment and Gear

In order to relay the most authentic and real experience of this story, we will need the proper Equipment and Gear to create this vision.



Locations are sometimes a character in itself so it is important for us to get the right kind of place in the right kind of environment.


Production Design / Set Decoration

To further explore the characters of Madhavi and Sonia, their home will provide key details of their situation and mindset thanks to the Production Design and Art Direction team.


Covid-Compliant Set

Everyone should be taking this virus seriously. While we hope that the numbers continue to drop in the coming months and as we shift gears to a lower tier in the Bay Area, our team has no plans to drop our guard. In order for that to happen, we will be hiring covid officers to enforce restrictions and rules on set with proper and necessary equipment.



You guys made it all the way to the end of this spiel. Thank you all so much! Please remember to Follow and Share our project with your donation.  If you can't help monetarily, that is totally fine! You can still hit the Follow and Share button for our project because we all know word of mouth is the best form of advertising. What is more, when we hit a certain number of followers, Seed & Spark will release added benefits like connecting us with companies that can render added help to our project beyond the production phase. 


Until our first update, please stay safe everyone!








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


Costs $2,000

Shooting on location comes at a cost.

Film Festival Submissions

Costs $1,300

Submitting for film festivals locally and internationally does add up very quickly!

Cash Pledge

Costs $0

Covid-Compliant Set

Costs $1,200

Our set will follow Covid protocols including getting proper protection and having safety checks.

Cast and Crew

Costs $5,000

It takes a village to make a film!

Equipment and Gear

Costs $4,000

We can't shoot if we don't have the goods!


Costs $1,500

Never underestimate the power of food!

About This Team



Jacintha is a Singaporean Indian Writer and Director.

She realized from her experiences in Singapore to now in the U.S., the roles for women and minorities or people of colour, were limited or stereotyped - where their strengths and choices were downplayed or seen as flaws. She decided to develop her craft as a filmmaker and change that narrative. Jacintha has been fortunate enough to have her works funded by the Singapore Film Commission and have screened her films at several film festivals. Her latest effort is the award-winning short film, The Gift. 

She has just completed working on a feature script, SINGAPURA, which is inspired by the 1964 Race Riots in Singapore and is currently working on the feature screenplay of Madhavi while in preparation for the proof-of-concept short film. The short screenplay earned her a placement as a Quarter Finalist in the Stowe Story Labs competition, in collaboration with the Final Draft Fellowship.

Jacintha is member of the Alliance of Women Directors, Women in Film, Film Independent, The San Francisco Film Society and Screen Actors Guild.



Lisa is a Native Hawaiian-Filipina Producer, Director and Screenwriter based in San Diego and San Francisco. Her credits include short films, web series and videos for Bobbie Baby, Lucid Motors, Square, Caviar and FWD Stance.

Lisa is the Co-Founder of Paper Tongue Productions, whose mission is to raise visibility for women, especially women of color, and to champion underrepresented perspectives in film and media. The pilot episode of their food doc series, Roots & Wings, is currently in the film festival circuit as they seek funds to develop and shoot the rest of their series. Roots & Wings profiles WOC chefs who use food as a conduit for cultural awareness and as a means of perpetuating their cultural traditions.

Lisa is a member of Int'l Documentary Association, Alliance of Women Directors, Women in Film, Brown Girls Doc Mafia, San Diego Filipino Cinema, Hawai'i Filmmakers Collective.



Jussi’s childhood passion for drawing and photography has taken him from film school in Helsinki, Finland to the San Francisco film industry.

He has shot award-winning documentaries and short films in Europe, Asia, Africa, North and South America. His commercial work include clients like Microsoft, Google, Salesforce, Nissan, BMW, Red Bull, Nokia and Carmex.

He has enjoyed the privilege of working as an instructor in San Francisco Film School in the past and divides his time between Helsinki and San Francisco.



Emma Scully is a San Francisco-based Filmmaker. She has worked in film and commercial Production Design for the last 5 years, and co-wrote and co-produced the award-winning short film, The Gift, that has played in film festivals across the globe.

She has worked on projects with celebrated artist and filmmaker Lynn Hershman Leeson, as well as with actress Tessa Thompson.

Emma is currently working at the San Francisco Film School, where she is in charge of adapting the school's course catalog for online and hybrid teaching, and is involved in planning, filming and editing new online filmmaking courses.



After graduating film school in 2010, Harly worked his formative first years in the film industry while living in San Francisco, CA. Aside from commercial, corporate non-profit organization projects,  feature and short films are how he cut his teeth They include The Dance, Drive Me to Vegas and Mars, The Gift and an upcoming feature film starring Constance Wu.

Harly frequently collaborates with Jacintha Charles since having met at film school and divides his time between the Bay Area and Los Angeles where he has since lived with his two sons, and now works as a freelance cinematographer and producer.



Tina D’Elia, is an award-winning casting director, acting teacher, and performance coach. She has cast feature films, short films, webseries, music videos, voice overs, and industrials in the Bay Area since 2009. The vast array of projects include Chosen Fam, Bit., Steep Town, Women is Losers, A Wake, Cold Pressed, Lake Merritt Monster, The Gift, Transfinite, and Median.

Tina has also worked as a casting associate for Nina Henninger Casting, CSA, casting prolific and famed projects like Guitar Man, HBO television series Looking, Netflix series Sense8, and Discovery ID shows I Almost Got Away with it, Wives with Knives, and Cuff Me if you Can.

She received the Trailblazer Award in 2015 and the Diversity Casting Award in 2017 from the Equality International Film Festival for casting.  Her outreach extends to diverse communities including BIPOC, Youth, LGBTQ, and people with disabilities. Tina is honored to be listed in Curve Magazine’s “Power List” (2017) and Go Magazine, “100 Women We Love” (2019).



Kendra Goff is a bay area born and raised filmmaker, with experience in Commercials, Music Videos, Short films and Documentaries.  

She co-wrote, edited and served as Director of Photography for the award -winning short film, The Gift.  Her other projects include coming-of-age films Cardboard Escape and Marvin's Room.  She is currently editing a feature documentary that is set in the world of music. 

Kendra's drive in filmmaking is to capture the beauty of life, especially as experienced through perspective of a child.

​Together with her partner, Elijah Booker, they run Rust and Honey Productions based in Santa Cruz, California.


Current Team