Tax Deductible Donations for Our Fiscally Sponsored Films

Chalice is a narrative film about grieving those we have loved and lost. We follow Charles and Alice throughout the tumultuous 1970s as they meet, fall in love, and make a life together. But they soon face a terrifying realization — one of them doesn’t have much longer to live.

This story is a love letter to my home. The film is for anybody who’s lost a loved one, wherever they are on their grieving journey. It is for people of faith, especially those who’ve struggled with or questioned their beliefs (a major part of my own life). And it is for the Midwest, the heart of America, where I draw my inspiration and find my most genuine voice.

My aim is to elicit a visceral, emotional impact by exploring the universal themes of love, grief, and loss. In dealing with my dad’s death, I have come to realize that even though most people have lost a loved one or will in the future, grief can be extremely lonely and isolating.

But it doesn’t have to be. I want Chalice to be a unifying experience, one that will tell the audience, “You are not alone.” If I can pass along part of my healing through my work, there’s something beautiful in that.


You can help make this film a reality with a tax-deductible contribution!

We have partnered with From the Heart Productions, a not-for-profit fiscal sponsor focused on compelling and powerful stories that make a difference.

Chalice is a turning point in my career — an opportunity to challenge myself artistically and personally. It is the kind of film I never would have imagined making, so the prospect is also intimidating. But I welcome the challenge and cannot wait to share this story with the world.

Please consider donating today, and help spread the word about Chalice!



Development: January 2021 – July 2022

Script completed, core production team attached, funding campaign

Pre-Production: August 2022 – October 2022

Full cast/crew confirmed, locations secured, schedule locked

Production: November 2022 – December 2022

Principal photography in Indiana

Post-Production: January 2023 – December 2023

Picture edited, music composed/recorded, sound mix, color correction

Exhibition/Distribution: January 2024 – December 2024

Film festivals, theatrical screenings and other organized engagements, full release



DAVID McCRACKEN | Writer / Director

David McCracken is a Writer/Director/Actor who earned his MFA in Film & Television Production at University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts. He has achieved numerous honors and awards, most notably USC’s prestigious James Bridges Memorial Scholarship for Directing and the Alfred P. Sloan Science Foundation Production Award. He was also a Semi-Finalist in the 2019 Academy Nicholl Screenplay Competition for his female-driven gothic horror Stay at Home.

In 2016, McCracken joined producer Josh Riedford to formed the production company Mr. Pictures. Bullitt County, their first film (written and directed by McCracken), premiered at the Austin Film Festival in 2017. The film was hugely success on the festival circuit, playing at nearly 20 festivals and garnering six “Best Picture” awards. Additionally, McCracken won “Best Director” at the Hoboken Film Festival in New York.

McCracken is actively developing a variety of projects that he has written to direct for Mr. Pictures. This includes Silvermaster, a Cold War spy thriller; The Mojave Comet, a sci-fi road trip comedy; and a miniseries adaptation of Stay at Home.


Josh Riedford is a producer, composer, and audio engineer. He began his filmmaking career while a music student at the University of Evansville with longtime collaborator David McCracken. He has since produced numerous film and music projects, including several of McCracken’s USC short films, “I Am Become Death” and “We Need To Talk.”

His first feature was the found footage horror thriller Daylight, which Riedford independently produced. Daylight premiered at London’s FrightFest in 2013 and won Best US Feature in the American Online Film Awards in 2014. It went on to achieve successful widespread digital distribution and was a featured “Top 10 New Horror Releases” on iTunes.

Most recently, Riedford produced the 1970s thriller feature film Bullitt County alongside McCracken. Completed in October 2017, Bullitt County opened in AMC Theatres nationwide in October 2018, following a successful festival run. It was released worldwide on VOD/DVD in February 2019 through Gravitas Ventures on Netflix, Amazon, Redbox, and numerous other platforms.

GWYN CONAWAY | Costume Designer

Gwyn Conaway is a costume designer and visual development artist based in Los Angeles, CA and Seoul, SK.

Conway is considered an authority on cultural world-building, fashion history, and the bridge between animation and live-action design. She has worked closely with Dreamworks and co-authored the book The Story We Wear: Costume Design for Animators and Illustrators, which was released with Design Studio Press in the fall of 2017.

Conaway also works as the Korean cultural guide for the National Partners of American Theatre at Kennedy Center in Washington, DC for their national Design Excellence Award. She works primarily in historical and conceptual drama. Bullitt County was her first feature film.


SEAN McDANIEL | Director of Photography

Sean McDaniel has been working as a cinematographer for over a decade on narrative, documentary and experimental films. He furthered his studies as a cinematographer while acquiring his MFA in Film Production at USC’s School of Cinematic Arts.

Sean’s work has screened in numerous film festivals around the world including the Palm Springs Film Festival, LA Shorts Film Festival, HollyShorts, and the Vancouver International Film Festival, among others. This includes his work as a cinematographer on the Sloan Grant recipient short film, “Nzara ‘76.”

As a Director of Photography, Sean strives to tell powerful stories through his work behind the camera while working with talented directors. His first feature film was Bullitt County.