Written by: Becky Sayers
A couple afternoons of daydreaming and lively conversations over dinner (usually Mexican food) produced the concept of The Last Buck Hunt. We had recently returned to the Seattle area after 5 years in Southern California and I was desperate to get started on a second feature film. Not only did I want to apply all the lessons I had learned from our first feature, Break, but I also wanted to take advantage of the beautiful Pacific Northwest surroundings in a fun, energetic movie that also happened to be budget-friendly. It turns out that writing such a script wasn’t as difficult as I thought it would be.
The story is about the crew of a hunting TV show called “Who Gives a Buck?” Following rumors of a killer buck the size of a barn, the crew head to Washington State to nab the legendary deer. It’s not long before the hunt is endangered by suspicious behaviors from the supposed world-class tracker, the wanna-be hunting prodigy of a host’s ego, and of course the local wildlife.
Once Nick and I settled on the premise, the script pages flew by like the last days of buck season. I suppose the story and its quirky characters came naturally to me. I partially drew inspiration from my father’s endearing viewership of outdoors television, everything from big game hunting in Alaska to lessons on cooking grouse over an open flame. Growing up in rural Washington State, it was no stretch to tell an exaggerated buck hunting tale. Now, I’m not saying I’m a chew-spitting hillbilly, but I do know all the words to Hank Williams Jr.’s “Country Boy Can Survive.”
Let me set aside the rabbit stew and get back to the movie…The film would be shot with a variety of digital cameras, mixing cinematic style with found footage elements. I was particularly inspired by films like District 9 and The Last Exorcism, where the lines were continually blurred between a documentary and cinematic approach. Our plan was (and still is) to incorporate interviews with goofy characters and allow parts of the cinematography to bare the personality of the character wielding the camera.
In summary, The Last Buck Hunt is our second feature film endeavor. In long form, The Last Buck Hunt is part love letter to my beautiful home state, part nostalgia towards my family’s country lifestyle, part experimentation with a mixed medium approach, and more than anything, an opportunity to create memorable characters and unlikely heroes within a fun story.