Laura Cross is my professional name (it’s easier to remember and fits nicer on film and book credits than my full name Laura Holycross). I’m a writer, producer, published author and film director. I have been a lover of true stories - especially crime, history and American innovation - all my life (i.e. since I was a munchkin growing up in Detroit).
In December 2012, I launched a production company (which, in 2014, would become Rebel Seed Films) to develop films inspired by true events focusing on stories about ordinary people who go against the grain to achieve something extraordinary. My projects revolve around stories of crime/justice, military/war and Americana/history.
In 2013, I launched a podcast network (which would eventually become Rebel Seed Podcasts) to release a collection of audio shows I produced (my first podcast experience began with the business show Expert Entrepreneur in 2009).
In 2015, I opened a boutique publishing firm, Rebel Seed Publishing, to release books based on, and inspired by, true stories of crime/justice, military/war and Americana/history. My how-to books for writers and filmmakers, are also released under the Rebel Seed Publishing banner and can be found at Ink & Cinema.
In 2017, I launched Rebel Seed Shop, to design and produce items inspired by Rebel Seed's stories and brand. The brand features Modern Americana apparel and arts & media.
Collectively, the company is known as Rebel Seed Studio.
MY FIRST FILM
My first produced film is the low-budget short action/war drama “Devil Dogs”, which premiered at the 2017 GI Film Festival in Washington D.C. over Memorial Day weekend, and was picked up by ShortsTV for television broadcast in the U.S. and Europe. (Pause for a short commercial break: It’s now available to stream on iTunes and Amazon, and watch on DVD and Broadcast Television.)
I am the writer, producer, and second unit director of the film. I had no personal military experience (though my ancestors have fought in every American conflict beginning with the Revolutionary War), and spent two years researching the battle of Fallujah (during the Iraq War) prior to shooting the film – BTW the experience of making my first film could be a movie unto itself (and you can read about that in my Q&A about the film here).
I develop military and crime stories inspired by true events, and have published how-to books and material for authors, screenwriters, and filmmakers. You can learn more about my books here.
I am currently developing the story Until Justice Rolls Down, which will be released as an audio series or film documentary in 2021/2022.
EDUCATION & EXPERIENCE
I earned my certificate in Feature Film Writing from the University of California, Los Angeles, Extension (UCLA-E), and completed courses in UCLA-E’s respected Independent Film Producer Program.
Prior to launching Rebel Seed, I spent several years in finance, including the accounting departments of production companies, and as the controller in the Los Angeles office of a global private equity firm, as well as in special event sales.
I was also a professional ghostwriter and author-strategist for narrative nonfiction and practical nonfiction (business, self-help and how-to) books, helping clients establish their expertise by becoming published authors and leverage their knowledge for more profits and major media. My author-clients have appeared on Oprah, The Today Show, and CNN, were featured in People magazine, Entrepreneur, Publishers Weekly, and The New York Times book review section, and landed on Amazon's bestseller list.
MY "ARTIST" STATEMENT
A mentor once asked me, “What are you willing to trade your life for?” Many things in life are renewable or replaceable. Except time. Once it’s spent, it is gone. We will never get that time back. Whatever we choose to invest our time doing, we are literally trading our lives for it.
I choose to trade my life for stories that explore (and attempt to understand) the logic and meaning in the experiences and events of our lives, and the individual power we hold in affecting those experiences and events. The intention of my work is to entertain, enlighten, and ultimately empower the viewer or reader to act within his or her own life.
As a filmmaker and storyteller, I am inspired by true events and tales of injustice and innovation in which an ordinary person experiences or achieves something extraordinary, and courage outweighs fear. I am drawn to gritty, realistic images that evoke a sense of the impact the place or object has on the characters, and narrative that considers questions and blurs the lines of interpretation allowing the viewer or reader to uncover the answers for themselves and render their own connotations and inferences.
I am a fan of directors Scott Cooper, John Hillcoat, Martin Scorsese, Clint Eastwood, Ridley Scott and Michael Mann, cinematographers Conrad Hall, Roger Deakins and Dante Spinotti, and writers Taylor Sheridan, John Fusco, Robert Towne, James Ellroy, Elmore Leonard, Walter Mosley, Bryan Burroughs and Charlie LeDuff.