When Melissa Wollenberg of Highlands Ranch snapped a cute/surreal photo of her son in a gas mask, standing before the orange haze of this past last summer's out-of-control fires, she had no idea that it would eventually be chosen by film legend Ron Howard and LCD Soundsystem's James Murphy for their upcoming short-film project. "It was just a fluke," remembers Wollenberg, who submitted the improvised pic to Canon's Project Imagina10n photo contest, where it was selected (along with nine others) by Murphy as a storytelling directive for the film. "I was just really excited when I found out that the photo made it at all. I am a complete amateur and yet when I saw [my son in a gas mask], I had to take a picture. It was just a weird feeling. I didn't really have any expectations."
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As Murphy explains in his quirky promotional video, each of the ten photos selected will influence different aspects of the film, with designations like "setting" or "tone" directed toward each picture. Melissa Wollenberg's photo was selected for the "backstory" category.
Director/actor Ron Howard will be on hand to mentor Murphy through the process; Jamie Foxx, Eva Longoria and Twitter co-founder Biz Stone are also making Project Imagina10n films of their own. "James is a cultural arbiter -- everything he touches, his fanbase gets excited about," Ron Howard recently said of his protege. "James's music, his shows, his style, they're so unique. I'm sure his film will be as well."
Just before disbanding LCD Soundsystem last year, Murphy opened up to NPR's Terry Gross about his reasons for breaking up one of the most memorable bands of the decade: "Doing a band properly kind of means you don't get to do anything else. And there's a lot of things that I'd really like to do that I can't because of [my band]." Presumably, working in film was one of them.