Our Upcoming Film
LOST NATION follows the intersecting journeys of impulsive, larger-than-life land speculator and Vermont founding father, Ethan Allen, and the family of Lucy Terry Prince and Abijah Prince — a groundbreaking poet and justice advocate and an intrepid backcountry entrepreneur — who were among the first free, Black settlers to Vermont.
During the mid-to-late 18th Century, Vermont was hotly contested territory, with recently settled poor farmers and small-scale land jobbers fighting off feudal New York land barons and British colonial officials, all actively displacing the indigenous Western Abenaki and Mohawk inhabitants. During this period, Lucy and Abijah Prince moved to the growing rural town of Guilford - the epicenter of Yorker resistance to Vermont rule - which Ethan Allen raided on two occasions, to suppress anti-Vermont insurrections.
In addition to the struggles all small family farmers faced on this unstable northern frontier, the Princes had to protect their family and property against racist harassment from nearby neighbor, John Noyes, which they fought on multiple fronts - including all the way to the highest court in the fledgling Republic of Vermont.
At the beginning of the semester, we were truly starting from scratch. From making MAJOR script changes to location scouting, scheduling and casting, every student was involved in trying to make this film come alive. I spent an entire week, speaking to every actor’s agent, manager - and our casting director. We wrote their offer letters and deal memos which required changes every time one of the parties read it. I found myself reading books about entertainment law and Screen Actors Guild guidelines, to a point wherein I could remember which page number a certain law was. This program has completely changed my perspective on so many things. It has given me SO much confidence.”
– Saniya Mirwani, Sarah Lawrence College