Max & Taco (Get Their Sh!t Together)

New York City, New York | Film Short

Comedy, Drama

Caitlin Ferrell

1 Campaigns | New York, United States

Green Light

This campaign raised $14,536 for post-production. Follow the filmmaker to receive future updates on this project.

116 supporters | followers

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Max has been sober for six months. In all that time, she hasn’t played music. On the eve of her first concert back, her world is thrown by a series of chaotic events. Will she relapse? Will she make it to play her concert?

About The Project

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

Mission Statement

The mission of this film is to tell a realistic, female-centered story of sobriety, family, and healing. Our creators share the same love of distinctive stories about women, the exploration of light and dark, and hyperrealism in the service of comedy.

The Story

Max is a young struggling musician. When we meet her, she has been 6 months sober from drugs and alcohol. Max is in the midst of a bad dream, when she is awoken in the middle of the night by a phone call from her brother, Robbie. He has found himself coming to, in a stranger's house, after drunkenly blacking out. He begs Max to come pick him up, as he is without a phone, keys, or wallet. With her impending first concert back as a musician after becoming sober, Max is reluctant to help her brother. We follow her through the chaos that ensues, when she decides to get Robbie. 

Max & Taco (Get Their Sh!t Together) is very personal to me, as it was born from the many battles I have experienced with myself, friends and loved ones, over the past 15 years. Addiction and mental health are central to every character in this film. The depression, the anxiety, the trauma can leave a thick residue on everyday life.

And yet, like most things in life, ultimately we can look back with relief and laugh about it all. I believe we are more empathetic, grateful, and positive talking about our shared experiences. 

I believe that all humans, all families, face addiction or mental health struggles in some way. It’s sometimes more tempting to try to numb, than to face life. But in numbing, we mute the bad and the good. For Max, this good is found in moving forward. By facing herself, she learns to play music again, to face life and its brevity fully. This is a story about grief, healing, expression and ultimately celebration. 

On-set production is where the script becomes the image. This is where our whole crew of over 20 people came together in Milan, New York to handle the camera, lighting, production design, and directing the actors.

Our team was delighted to receive the prestigious 2021 Indian Paintbrush Grant Award, one of a very select few of grants given to Columbia MFA Film students. This grant money allowed us cover some of these on-set production costs.

What people often don't think about is how much it takes to support the cast and crew, while they are shooting the film. This is what our lovely producing team, led by Leila Chediak, handled. These costs included location costs, travel, lodging, and food. Think about when you've gone on vacation... now think about going on vacation with over 20 people! Now you can see why filmmaking on location costs a lot of money.

You may be asking yourself, "Why do we need money, if we've already shot the film already?" The truth is being on set and shooting a film is only half of the process!

We are currently in ​post-production and need your help! Apart from on-set production costs, post-production is the second most expensive part of the filmmmaking process. Post-production on our film will be lasting for 6 months, and it's very important that we are able to compensate the post-production team as they work tirelessly week after week. This process includes editing, color correction, scoring, sound design, sound mixing, and preparation of press materials for festival submissions and screenings. 

We want to get our film out and into the world as soon as possible! In order to make sure our efforts are successful, we must apply to a variety of great festivals. Film festivals cost between $20-$100 each to submit to. For indie filmmakers, film festivals are the key to opening doors and providing future opportunities.

We have such an amazing team, who have put in so much time and effort and are pushing to get this film seen. With your contributions to this campaign, we can make those dreams come true.

Editing: Editing is the key component to making our film a film! This is where we slice & dice, so that the story flows in a way that best conveys what we're trying to say.

Color Correction: The look of a film is not developed when shooting - it's actually carefully crafted and adjusted while in post! We want our film to be visually popping, and that happens here.

Composing/Music: What would Jaws be without its iconic score? Music helps us feel and brings us into the world of the film. Our film especially has an important need for music since Max is a musician.

Sound Design & Mix: They say that good sound is what separates a bad film from a good one. It creates the environment of the film, and it is immensely important that we create just the right soundscape.

VFX & Graphics: No, we aren't setting the film in space with superheroes fighting each other... but we do have some basic coverups and adjustments that VFX work will help us with. 

Marketing: We have to tell people about the film! This will help us craft materials to get the word out that we're here, and ready to be seen!

Festival Submissions: The hardest part of making a film is actually get it into the world. Festivals are the best way to do that, but they don't make it cheap. Fees average $20 - $100 per festival, and we want to be able to go the best!

Production Costs: These are leftover costs of equipment rentals, lodging for cast and crew, & location fees. We were thankful to have a grant to cover some of these costs, but need some help getting the rest!

We need everyone's help to reach our crowdfunding goal, and even if you are unable to contribute please consider sharing this campaign with your friends and family! 

Please share our campaign via social media, email, word-of-mouth, smoke signal, however you want! We literally can't do this without you!

Are you interested in supporting Writer/Director Caitlin Ferrell and Producer Leila Chediak?

Follow our new film MAX & TACO GET THEIR SH!T TOGETHER as we make our way through finishing this film!

Consider following the links below to contribute!

@Twitter: Max & Taco

@instagram: Max & Taco Film

@instagram: Caitlin's Instagram

@seedandspark: Seed & Spark

Thank you for following and supporting our film! We cannot wait to share it with you.


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


Costs $1,500

To give Max her song and a little more!

Festival Submission Fees

Costs $2,000

Submitting to the right festivals is what brings a film to life!


Costs $1,000

To enhance the coloring of the film!

Sound Designer

Costs $1,000

Sound is the upmost important element for this film! A professional mix is necessary for story.


Costs $2,400

We are thankful for our editor as he made this film come to life in post production!

Cash Pledge

Costs $0

Production Costs

Costs $3,100

To help finish covering costs from production such as rental & lodging!

VFX Artist

Costs $1,500

They'll help us make sure there aren't water bottles where they shouldn't be *ahem Game of Thrones*


Costs $1,000

This will help us extend our reach, and get the word out there!

About This Team

Caitlin Ferrell Writer/Director

Caitlin Ferrell is a writer, director, and producer. Originally from Colorado, she grew up in the performing arts community, with a strong education in dance and an affection for theater. In 2015, Caitlin received her BA in theater from the UCLA Theater, Film, & Television department, where she studied musical theater, directing, and film. Currently, she is an MFA Screenwriting candidate in the Columbia University School of the Arts MFA Film program. Caitlin has written and directed six short films Water, Clean, Nora, Grace, Feed me, and Max & Taco (Get Their Sh!t Together). Apart from her personal work, Caitlin has worked on the documentary Joan Didion: The Center Will Not Hold and with Vice News, Michael Moore, Marianna Palka, and Oren Jacoby. 


She is greatly influenced by female playwrights and filmmakers who push the physical and psychological limits of their characters. In both her theatrical and her cinematic directing and writing, she is no stranger to crossing genres, moving from drama to hyperrealism, documentary to comedy, and beyond. Her complex characters often explore identity from the female point of view, reacting to the extreme yet often darkly humorous events that surround them. Caitlin is excited to continue learning and to expand her relationship with storytelling in many media.

Leila Chediak Producer

Leila Chediak is a Cuban-American producer and screenwriter from Miami, Florida and a second year producer MFA candidate at Columbia University. Her love of film began with screenwriting when she attended the NYU screenwriting program for high school students.  After receiving her BA at Sarah Lawrence College, Leila was a house manager at one of NYC’s renowned art houses, Quad Cinema. Within a year, she was promoted to assistant general manager. During her managing years, she assisted on independent sets, primarily as a script supervisor. She also co-produced a micro-budget film called Reading For Sarah, which is currently in post-production. During her time at Columbia, Leila has cultivated a love for pre-production and teamwork. She gravitates towards female-centric scripts that provide nuanced insight into the world. Leila’s primary goal, one she believes will last a lifetime, is simple: she will help the next up-and-coming filmmakers break into the industry. 

JD Gonzales Cinematographer

J.D. has worked in the film industry for the last 10 years in New Mexico, Colorado, and New York. He specializes in spunky creative fictional narratives, and has an extensive background filming short films, music videos, and commercials. Most notably he’s worked with Megan Thee Stallion, Peyton Manning (three times), and J Balvin in recent years.In 2019, J.D. founded livalittle®, a high end video production company dedicated to hiring crews that reflect Denver’s diverse communities. Livalittle has an ongoing partnership with 9News Denver producing branded content, and has worked with TIME Magazine, Nettwerk Music Group, Comcast, and TED. J.D. has partnered with the University of Denver as a Director of Photography for the film Snapshots of Confinement, a feature length documentary funded by National Parks set to be released in 2023. The film follows the significance of photo albums created while Japanese-Americans were forced into Internment Camps. J.D. works as a local in New York City as well as Denver, CO.

He lives with his supportive fiancée, his loyal dog Summer, and mostly loving cat, Magic.


Hanna DeLoe Original Music & Score

Hanna is a classically trained singer/songwriter residing in New York, NY. Hanna received her Bachelor of Arts in Music from the University of California Los Angeles. Their day job is an administrative assistant at YSC consulting. By night their an audio engineer and Grammy award winning Alto performer. They like to say they’ve been adopted to film through their fiancé, Kevin Bahr. Hanna also co-produced and scored Reading for Sarah. When they are not doing something musical, they also enjoy  producing films and dog-walking.


Hannah Shealy Max

Hannah Shealy is an actress, singer, model, and doula based in New York City. She is currently attending Columbia University’s MFA Acting program. 

Christian Ryan Jack

Christian Ryan is an actor based in New York City. He has acted in television, film, and theatre. He was nominated for best actor in Macbeth from the Orlando Sentinel and for Will Shakespeare from the Berkshire Broadway world. 

Oliver Prose Robbie

Oliver Prose is a natural, detailed actor with a stand-out voice, and an incredible mastery of nuance. Favorite regional credits include performances as Trekkie Monster in Avenue Q, Abraham in Altar Boyz, and as a soloist in Godspell. Prose is a recent graduate from the NYU Tisch School of the Arts BFA program where he studied in New Studio on Broadway, Experimental Theatre Wing, and International Theatre Workshop. While at NYU, he had the pleasure of performing a wide range of leading roles in each of those studios highlighting all corners of the theatrical repertoire including: Konstantin, the playwright, in Anton Chekov’s masterwork The Seagull, Joe in Stephen Schwartz’ hit musical Working; young dynamo tycoon Donald Marshall III in the record-breaking 1919 classic musical Irene under the direction of Brian Hill; and wrongfully convicted factory Superintendent Leo Frank in Jason Robert Brown and Alfred Uhry’s Tony-winning fan favorite Parade.



Current Team