Water in the Pot

A Pilot Written and Directed by Jeffrey Engelson



Todd and Anne, a young couple who recently moved in together, must adapt to the needs and expectations of the other while still remaining true to themselves. Loving someone is just the first part in making a relationship work.

The Pilot

Todd (Matthew Zuk) leaves dirty dishes around the house. Anne (Mandi Christine Kerr) finds herself cleaning up his messes. If this is going on just weeks after she moves in with him, what should she expect years down the road? A chaotic evening with his parents Rita and Harvey (Patricia French and Bill Murphey),triggers self-discovery for Todd and Anne that could either improve or unravel their relationship. What will they learn about what to expect from each other and how will their pasts mold their relationship?

Filmmaker’s Statement

I like stories where there isn’t a clear protagonist and antagonist, but two people who are right and wrong in their own ways. The scenario gets set up and you watch the tug-of-war. You can empathize with and see the faults of either side. I enjoy when the audience disagrees with each other about which character to root for. I am also interested in the social elements which cause people to have certain preferences, mannerisms and behaviors. Upbringing, which plays a large part in who a person becomes, influences how people choose to raise their own children. Characters, their relationships and societal influences are the topics I will explore in this episode and in future episodes of Todd and Anne.

Jeffrey Engelson Writer/Director

The Cast

Matthew Zuk as Todd

Matthew, a native New Yorker, studied Theater at UGA and CSULA. His short film, Iris, won Best Dramatic Film at the University of Georgia Campus Movie Fest and Best Dramatic Film in the South-Eastern Regional. His screen credits include Super Southern Sweet Sixteen and Max Lucado 3:16: Stories of Hope. He will appear in the Sony film, The 5th Wave, in 2016.

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Mandi Christine Kerr as Anne

Mandi graduated from Columbus State University with a BFA in Acting/Directing where she was nominated for the Irene Ryan Scholarship for her performances as Blanche DuBoise in A Streetcar Named Desire and Young Woman in Machinal on the CSU stage. Since graduating and starting a career in film, her projects include Necessary Roughness (USA), Stephen Kings’ 2014 feature Cell and Blackflight Studio’s The Legend of Seven Toe Maggie.

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Patricia French as Rita

Patricia began as a theatre actress, as well as a voice-over talent. She played Betty for three seasons on Lifetime’s Army Wives and she is the voice of Lil in Squidbillies on Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim. Her most recent film and TV credits include: Life As We Know ItMy Fake FianceInside OutHall PassThe Three StoogesThe Change UpParental GuidanceThe WatchLet’s Be CopsTrouble With the Curve, and she can be seen in the award-winning HBO series True Detective and Dumb and Dumber To.

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Bill Murphey as Harvey

Bill, an Atlanta native, has been acting in his hometown since completing his MFA at the Uni- versity of Mississippi. Bill is an Artistic Associate at Theatrical Outfit and winner of two Suzi Bass Awards for his work there in Around the World in Eighty Days and The God Committee. Other work includes the acclaimed one-man comedy, Fully CommittedNext FallThe Fabulous LipitonesThird Country and Mary Poppins. Television and movie appearances include ConstantineSatisfactionThe GameDrop Dead DivaArmy WivesGood EatsAcceptanceThe Fat Boy ChroniclesOur Very Own and Devil’s Knot.

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Reid Meadows as Marc

Reid was six years old when he landed his first role in The Three Stooges. He is also a competitive gymnast who trained in Atlanta with Dwayne Boyd, Ashley LeConte Campbell and The Robert Mello Studio. Recent work includes a bullying baseball pitcher in Curve Ball, an imaginary friend in Buttercup Bill and a Steampunk mini crime-fighter in Archangel: From the Winter’s End Chronicles.

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Dusty Mitchell as Marc’s Dad

Dusty majored in Theatre at Auburn University and served as a Security Forces troop in the Air Force. Completing his military service he returned his focus fully to working in film and television studying and developing himself not only from a perspective in front of the lens, but also behind the scenes.

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Barb Foran as Anne’s Mom

Barb, originally from Columbus, Ohio, was a graduate and post-graduate in the Professional Actors Program at Ohio University. She currently lives in Atlanta. Barb’s recent credits include Paula Peril: Midnight WhistlePassing, and Sarah’s Friend.

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Writer/Director: Jeffrey Engelson

Jeffrey lives outside Atlanta, GA and graduated from Georgia State University in 2008 with a Master of Arts in Filmmaking. His previous short films have played in film festivals across the country including New York and LA. He works as a dolly grip in IATSE and is developing feature length scripts as well as more episodes of Todd and Anne.

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Producer:  Travis Breedlove

Travis, a native to Georgia, has written, produced and directed films under his production company, Painted Horse Productions. His most recent directorial feature is Headed South for Christmas. In addition to currently producing numerous short films, he is developing feature scripts he also wrote.

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Director of Photography: Sunny Lee

Born in Washington, D.C., Sunny got his start in filmmaking working with acclaimed documentarian Sandra Bradley. After graduating from The University of Southern California he worked in Los Angeles in lighting and cinematography on feature films and television projects like CSI and Mini’s First Time. A move to Atlanta found Sunny heading lighting departments in television projects such as Finding Carter and Vampire Diaries, as well as shooting independent features, shorts and commercials as a Local 600 Director of Photography.

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It’s one thing to make films about spectacular and unbelievable stories from the depths of our imagination.  It is a far greater triumph for a filmmaker to elevate truths of the mundane to such an arresting yet familiar place in your heart.  Todd & Anne is not the love story you dreamt about when you were a child…it is the story of love that we have come to know when the fairytales end and life begins.

Matthew Goodwin

Assistant Director, The Walking Dead

The Todd and Anne pilot is is a very relatable domestic drama with engaging characters and a beautifully written script which respects the audience. Jeffrey Engelson has a bright career ahead of him.

Kevin Derek

Festival Director, The Irvine International Film Festival