THE LOT Update on Park Progress! #BuildTheLot

Our neighborhood, Algiers Point, was just named New Orleans neighborhood of the year for the 2nd year in row! Included in the article below is a very exciting update and mention about the progress to complete the story THE LOT is based on and build a new park in our neighborhood for the kids of New Orleans. Check out the article below to read about our little slice of heaven and #7 especially for an update on THE LOT!

Thank you to Leighton Barrett Strong and Michael Verderosa for the awesome interview, Curbed New Orleans for the article, Baakir Tyehimba for the inspiration to create change and build the original park, Kathryn Hobgood Ray and the Confetti Kids board for continuing to push us forward. More exciting news to come!

THE LOT will screen at TWO festivals in August 2016!

THE LOT's festival journey continues this summer!

We will screen at TWO highly regarded film festivals.

Friday, Aug. 12th at the Martha's Vineyard African-American Film Festival!

Producer Megan Grogan will be in attendance!

Saturday, Aug. 27th at the Sidewalk Film Festival in Birmingham, AL!

Director Russell Blanchard and Screenwriter Ben Gouldthorpe will be in attendance!

Come see THE LOT on the big screen and please tell your friends who live in these areas!

THE LOT, finalist for 2014 Indiewire Project of the Year!

Thank you to all our supporters who helped our film, THE LOT (, be one of 12 finalists nationwide for Indiewire's Project of the Year! After earning Project of the Day, Week and Month in 2014, we were honored to be included with some amazing films from across the world as a Indiewire finalist.

We look forward to sharing our film with all of you in 2015 as we hit the festival circuit! Keep creating, keep believing.

"Every build anything before?" - Grady, THE LOT


THE LOT Kickstarter Launch Party, Saturday June 28th, 12-4pm!

Join us at our Kickstarter campaign launch party for THE LOT, a narrative short film based on a true story of a man who tried to build a park on an abandoned lot for kids in Algiers.

$10 (suggested donation) buys you access to food, drinks and raffle prizes from 12-4pm at Warren's Corner in Algiers Point (It's across the street from Old Point Bar -
601 Patterson Street), a historic old New Orleans bar that is being opened up exclusively for this event!

Brunch and libations for all, and funky sounds by LC Smoove, the amazing house band at MyBar on Bourbon Street fronted by one of our lead actors, Leroy Marshall!

No car, no problem! By taking the Algiers-Canal St. ferry ( you can walk to or bike to our event from Uptown, Mid-City, the French Quarter, Marigny or Bywater!

Details about our film and mission:

New Orleans based film collective LOCOFilm, is proud to announce that our newest short film begins production in Algiers Point in mid July, using an all-New Orleans cast and crew. LOCOFilm was founded in 2010 right here in New Orleans by Russell Blanchard, our film's director and co-writer, to connect artists with projects that have a social impact.

Our crew is the driving engine behind our success!

Our name, LOCOFilm, reflects the power of a locomotive. As in, once something so powerful gets rolling, it is near impossible to stop. That is just how we also see the momentum we are building for the abandoned construction of park so desperately needed in the still blighted Algiers Point neighborhood depicted in our story.

THE LOT is based on a true story that transpired in the Algiers neighborhood of New Orleans during the summer of 2007. Mr. Baakir Tyehimba saw an opportunity to teach the children in his neighborhood building skills and create a park built for, and in part by, them; helping to fill a still-present void in these children's lives. That is, a safe place to learn and play outside of the hours spent in school. 

He attempted to take the abandoned lot across the street from his cafe, Blackstar; and turn it into an after school workshop to teach them not only how to hold a hammer, but how to shape their own destiny. While the park and building program gained quick momentum, its long term success was ultimately forced to be put on hold due to a number of circumstances, including insurance red tape and historical district building codes. 

As time passed, while waiting for continued approval, what was already built continued to be taken off the lot or torn down. Over time, the park and children’s playhouses gradually disappeared and the lot is now left almost empty, save for the original fence posts set in place seven years ago.

Our intent is to not only create a beautiful and powerful short film in its own right, but also to re-ignite the passion once ablaze in this neighborhood for providing safe and constructive enrichment for this neighborhood's under-served youth. Ultimately, we want to leave a lasting impact on the young lives of those stricken by poverty and other disadvantages beyond their control. We want to see this park built, and we don't want it to take another seven years for it to happen.

THE LOT Update #1 - Our Journey Begins!

The Lot in Algiers

The Lot in Algiers

We are thrilled to announce that we are deep in pre-production on the short film The Lot. The director, Russell Blanchard, has been working on this project for over a year now and the pieces are finally coming together!

We've finished our first and second round of auditions, and feel very strong with how the cast is shaping up. Casting is such an integral part of making a film, and it is only when you officially have your cast when the film begins to come to life. We could not be happier with all of the local New Orleans talent that came out and wanted to be a part of our film. Big thanks to our casting director Jacques Soudelier for the successful auditions!

Over the next few weeks our production team, including the Director of Photography and Production Designer, will be hard at work finalizing the look for the film. Part of that will include filming a trailer. The trailer, along with another video introducing our films story and our crew, will be filmed to put on our crowd-funding campaign. That's right, in just over a month we will be launching a kickstarter to help fund the film! Funding for a film like this is so important in allowing us not only to have the support to tell the story the way we feel it needs to be told, but also to support all of the crew who will be dedicating their time and talent.

Stay tunes for updates leading up to our big launch!!

Casting Call - The Lot

Casting has begun on our next picture!

Casting Call for Narrative Short Film "The Lot"
(Based on a true story from New Orleans)

Logline: A lonely café owner attempts to befriend an outcast boy while struggling to turn an abandoned lot into a park.

Please submit head-shots, resumes or a picture w/details to: 

Auditions to be held late March/early April. 

Character Breakdowns

Male, African-American, 30 - 45 (Lead)
Male, African-American, 7 - 12 (Lead)
Male, African-American. 50 – 70 (Supporting)
Male, Caucasian. 30 – 40 (Supporting)
Male, African-American, 9 – 14 (Supporting)
Male, Indian-American, 20 – 35 (Supporting)
Male, Caucasian, 50 – 70 (Supporting)
Neighborhood Kids. All ethnicities welcome. 6 - 12

**Please share via Social Media if you are connected with the Louisiana film community**

LOCOfilm heads to Sundance 2014!

A quick update on our current projects and plans! LOCOfilm is heading to Sundance 2014 in a few days! Russell Blanchard will be volunteering at the festival, stop by and say hi anytime from January 15-20th at the MARC theatre! 

Russell will also be meeting with potential collaborators and old filmmaking friends throughout the 10 day fest, so if your in town contact him on Twitter (@RussellJoseph), Facebook or send an old-fashioned email! (

We had a very production week pushing our new project, The Lot, forward in a major way. We are very excited to hit the ground running in Feb. 2014 on a promo documentary style trailer that will lay the foundation for this exciting community based short film project. We will meet Baakir Tyehimba, it was his true story and efforts that inspired this film.

We hope all of you had a great holiday season and wonderful start to the new year! Keep creating, keep innovating and keep pushing forward. We are expecting great things in 2014 so never, ever give up pursuing your dreams. We won't.

Welcome to LOCOfilm!

We are happy to announce the official launch of! This launch is possible due to the enormous contributions of the cast and crew who helped make our films. You can view samples of our previous work under the "film archive" tab.

This blog will keep our team and audience up-to-date with our projects. We are currently developing two short-format pieces. Nikki Loves Me, an exciting web pilot for a single-season dark comedy series, follows a young woman's attempts to become an adult despite a terrifying attachment to her childhood.  Lot Next Door, a community-oriented short film, sets a story of unlikely friendship in a dilapidated New Orleans neighborhood. We plan to conduct a Kickstarter campaign to help support the community that inspired its story. 

Both Nikki Loves Me and Lot Next Door will be shot in the New Orleans area during 2014. If you are interested in working on either project, please contact

Thanks and stay tuned for more from LOCOfilm!