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The Story

Loving Annabelle is the controversial story of a Catholic Boarding School teacher, Simone Bradley (Diane Gaidry), who has an affair with her female student, Annabelle (Erin Kelly).

Simone is Saint Theresa's prized young poetry teacher who finds peace and security within the boarding school's walls. Surrounded by a lush atmosphere with little conflict, Simone has settled into a life of comfort and purpose educating her young female students.

Annabelle is a charismatic and enchanting new student who quickly draws attention for her rebellious behavior. Fearing Annabelle will influence the other students, rigid Headmistress (Ilene Graff), instructs Simone to keep an eye on Annabelle and get her under control.

Simone, however, quickly learns that the real challenge is not Annabelle's behavior but the attraction budding between the two. As Annabelle pursues her teacher, she unleashes the passion that has been locked deep inside Simone, who must decide whether or not to enter into an affair that could cost her everything.

Inspired by the 1931 German classic, MAEDCHEN IN UNIFORM, director Katharine Brooks's Loving Annabelle gives a modern telling of the ìforbidden loveî story that continues to be controversial to this day.

With stunning cinematography by Cynthia Pusheck, Loving Annabelle offers excellent performances from its female leads, Diane Gaidry and Erin Kelly, as well as a featured performance by Academy Award nominee/Golden Globe recipient Kevin McCarthy.

Loving Annabelle explores the complexity and controversy of love and struggle between two women who have every reason to deny their feelings. Blind to the world around them, the two journey into a love affair destined to change their lives forever.

The Filmmakers

Katherine Brooks -- Writer and Director

Katherine ran away from a small town in Louisiana to pursue a career in television and film when she was just 16 years old. With only 150 dollars and a dream, she was forced to sleep in her car in the parking lot of a Hollywood motel. Now, nearly two decades later, Katherine has directed some of television's hottest shows, and is currently working on her third feature film.

LOVING ANNABELLE (writer/director), starring Erin Kelly, Diane Gaidry and Academy Award nominee Kevin McCarthy, was Katherine's first feature film. Her second feature, WAKING MADISON (writer/director), stars Sarah Roemer, Academy Award nominee Elisabeth Shue, Will Patton, Taryn Manning, and Golden Globe winner Frances Conroy. The movie will be released in 2010.

Katherine is currently in pre-production with her latest film, THE BOYS CLUB, which is based on the life of Hall of Fame jockey Julie Krone. Katherine will direct the screenplay, which she penned.

Katherine’s extensive list of television credits includes three seasons of the Emmy Award-winning show “The Osbournes”, the highly acclaimed show “Newlyweds” starring Jessica Simpson, and MTV’s groundbreaking “The Real World”. She helmed MTV’s “There and Back”, the latest season of “Meet the Barkers”, and directed and produced “The Simple Life” starring Paris Hilton. Katherine is currently producing and directing "The Spin Factor" with Kim Kardashian, which is E! Entertainment's top-rated upcoming network show.

Katherine is a member of the Directors Guild of America. She has been a Jury Member for Samsung Fresh-Films, the largest teen filmmaking program in the USA, and was also the recipient of the LACE Award for Arts and Entertainment, which honors women who have made a difference in the entertainment community.

CYNTHIA PUSHECK (Director of Photography)

Cynthia Pusheck studied film production at the prestigious Columbia College and then attended the American Film Institute where she received a Masters Degree in Cinematography. While perfecting her skills as a cinematographer, Cynthia worked as a union camera assistant and camera operator on television shows, features and commercials.

Pusheck was the Director of Photography on the independent feature, Three Days of Rain, (Peter Falk, Blythe Danner) which was selected for the 2002 Tribeca Film Festival and was featured as a special screening at the 2003 Berlin Film Festival. Other recent projects include a documentary series for the Oxygen channel, the feature film, Leadcatcher, underwater photography on the feature Abandon and 2nd unit photography for Heavenís Pond. She also worked as an operator on the film Biker Boyz and is currently the 2nd unit DP on the hit television series CSI ñ Miami. Brooks and Pusheck have previously collaborated on projects including the short film Finding Kate.

GREG CARROLL / JENNIFER YOUNG (Producers)

Greg and Jennifer have produced shows for ABC, NBC and FOX. Jennifer is currently in development for her show Feng Shui Your Life and Greg recently launched Caribou Entertainment and is developing multiple TV Projects. Jennifer produced Katherineís award winning film, Dear Emily.

LORI BALL (Editor)

Lori moved to Los Angeles at the age of 17 to pursue acting. She quickly discovered her passion for editing and after receiving her degree in English Literature at UCLA began cutting features. She has worked with such filmmakers as John Waters, Chris Columbus, Joe Dante, Robert Rodriguez and Michael Mann. Loriís recent credits include the feature, The Kiss starring Eliza Dushku and Billy Zane. She also edited SueÒo starring John Leguizamo. Lori was Assistant Editor on Ali starring Will Smith.

JUDITH MARTIN & MARC DOLD (Composers)

Judith and Marcís credits say it all. They have had 5 Billboard top singles and have produced such artists as Celine Dion, Enya, Norah Jones, Cindy Lauper, Nelly Furtado, Erasure, Mandy Moore, Madonna, Peter Gabriel, LeAnn Rimes and Alice Cooper, just to name a few. Judith and Marc will compose the filmís score and help put together the best compilation soundtrack possible.

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ZORA DEHORTER, C.S.A. (Casting Director)

Zora DeHorter has cast over eighteen feature films, as well as numerous television shows, theater and commercials. Her credits include the feature film Ali G Indahouse and the Emmy-nominated TV series Dead Like Me.

The Cast

DIANE GAIDRY (Simone)
Loving Annabelle is the latest independent film that Diane has had the pleasure and good fortune in which to play a complex lead character like Simone. Early on in Dianeís acting career, after receiving her BFA in acting from NYU and landing guest roles on several TV shows, she realized that the traditional realm of studio television and film offered very little of interest or opportunity. In 1993, she cofounded Filmmakers Alliance where she has produced and acted in dozens of shorts and feature films, which have received acclaim in film festivals around the world.

She played the lead role of Ellie in the feature film, The Dogwalker (directed by Jacques Thelemaque) which will be distributed theatrically in early 2006. Her portrayal of Lucy in America So Beautiful (directed by Babak Shokrian) received great critical praise here and abroad. Diane also starred as Petit in the film Need, directed by indie film icon Rob Nilsson. Need will begin its festival run in late 2005. Some of Dianeís recent short film performances include: Egg and Transaction - both directed by Jacques Thelemaque, Birth of Industry directed by Gabriela Tollman, Traces directed by Claudia Leger, Concerned Lady for America directed by Beth LaDove, Shivaís Teardrop directed by Sean Hood and Thanksgiving which she directed. She was also recently seen in a guest role in the television series Medium.

ERIN KELLY (Annabelle)
Starring in her first play at the age of six, Erin has had a successful stage career for seventeen years. She has studied under many esteemed instructors in a variety of mediums spanning from the Meisner technique in acting to commedia-del-arte in movement to extensive studies in music and dance. Upon a recent move to Los Angeles, Erin embarked on a film career and has since landed four national commercials and six regional commercials and was the lead in three short films, including Katherine Brooksí acclaimed film Finding Kate. Erin is a dynamic combination of talent, determination, and drive.

ILENE GRAFF (Mother Emaculata)
Ilene is best known for her role as Marsha Worth on the popular TV show, Mr. Belvedere. She was also Chief Dinah in the favorite film, South Pacific and showed off her comedy skills opposite Rodney Dangerfield in Lady Bugs.

KEVIN McCARTHY (Father Harris)
Academy Nominated and Golden Globe winner, Kevin McCarthy is one of Hollywoodís favorite faces. To many moviegoers, heíll always be the frantic fugitive, pursued by pod people from outer space, who dashes onto a busy highway screaming, ìTheyíre here! Theyíre here!î Thatís the climax of the sci-fi classic, Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956). McCarthyís career extends far beyond that. A stage player from Washington, McCarthy earned a Supporting Actor Oscar nomination for his first film in 1951: Death of a Salesman in which he appeared as elder son Biff (a role he played on the London stage). In recent years, director Joe Dante, an inveterate fan, has cast McCarthy in colorful roles in a number of his films, including The Howling (1981), Twilight Zone-The Movie (1983), Innerspace (1987), and Matinee (1993). He can still be seen both in large-scale theatrical films and made for-video cheapies, though he takes greater pride, no doubt, in his long running stage vehicle ìGive ëEm Hell, Harry!î (as Harry Truman).

MICHELLE HORN (Kristen)
Michelle has played Jesse Campbell on Strong Medicine for the past three years. She recently starred in the new Bruce Willis movie, Hostage. Sheís had numerous television roles on such shows as Family Law, Without A Trace, The Practice, Angel and The Profiler.

LAURA BRECKENRIDGE (Colins)
Laura just landed the role in the WBís new show, Related. Currently Laura is starring in the off-broadway play, The Cherry Orchard. She recently wrapped shooting the lead role in the feature film, Southern Belles.

MARKUS FLANAGAN (Michael)
Markus Flanagan plays Jeff Singer on the Nickelodeon show Unfabulous. He also played Harry Dean in the popular Melrose Place. Flanagan has been in several movies including Biloxi Blues and Born on the Fourth of July.

MARLA MAPLES (Lauren)
Marlaís many memorable roles include playing Ann in Todd Solondz movie, Happiness, and Cynthia in For Richer or Poorer. She has also lent her comedic talents in such shows as Spin City, The Nanny and Sunset Beach. She is currently starring on the ABC show, First Wives Club.

Stills

Photo by Jennifer Young

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