Lance Malbon could have been a plumber or a movie producer. He chose the latter and is now promoting a film he wrote and produced and which features well-known Hollywood actors.
“I was really into reading and writing even when I was little, and always wrote short stories up through college,” said Malbon, a 1999 graduate of Whittier Regional Vocational Technical High School. At some point in there I realized I could try to make it a career and film seemed like the best way to find an audience.”
Malbon, 31, a Haverhill native living in Los Angeles, has been garnering praise for a movie he wrote and produced called “Black Marigolds.” He’s been submitting it to film festivals across the country, including the Boston International Film Festival in April, where it won a special recognition award.
“It did pretty well considering we were up against 120 films, with only six winning awards,” Malbon said.
He describes his film with the disquieting tagline: “When all you have are your mind and your love, how long can you hold onto one, when the other starts to disappear?”
“Black Marigold” is a drama about a writer, Ryan Cole, and his wife, Kate Cole, who go to a cabin in the woods so Ryan can write a second novel. But there’s something going on inside Ryan Cole’s mind that he’s keeping from his wife Kate, who eventually calls in a doctor. Her husband is diagnosed with Creutzfeldt–Jakob disease, which Malbon describes as a strain of mad cow disease that affects humans.
“You have two people who are in love and he suffers a fast-acting mental illness in which he loses his memory of their relationship and his past, and it also affects his motor skills,” Malbon said. “He eventually doesn’t know who she is and he is taken away by doctors.”