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Latest Turlock film project moves into next phase
bavlina film pic
Turlock native and co-founder of Monarch Moon Films Bavlina Youri and crew films scenes for "I Meant To Tell You" on location in Turlock. - photo by CANDY PADILLA / The Journal

Filming has wrapped on the latest project to use Turlock as the backdrop, and as producers move into the post-production phase, they’re already thinking of plans for the debut screening next year in Turlock.

Turlock native and co-founder of Monarch Moon Films Bavlina Youri returned to her hometown earlier this month to film her debut directorial project “I Meant To Tell You,” which was also written by Youri.

The filming process, which used various locales around Turlock, is complete and the post-production work is being done in Turlock by local individuals with experience in movie making, Youri said.

“It's been absolutely gratifying for all the talents to come together in collaboration in telling this story, it's beautiful to work with people who are so passionate about the art,” Youri said.

“I Meant To Tell You” will be a 20 minute film that Youri says is about “a couple’s courage being put to the test when their biggest fears resurface.” She decided to film the project here in Turlock because the story, which she wrote, draws upon some of her formative experiences growing up in Turlock. The town also helps set the tone for the independent short film, Youri said.

The short film did not have need for extras, but Youri said there was plenty of support from the community during the filming process.

“People in the community who know about the film have been so supportive, giving and very interested in the process of film making,” Youri said.  “You don't get that in bigger cities. It's brushed off as 'just another film' but that's what makes this film special because it's not 'just another film,' rather it's a film that roots itself from a town that has many stories to tell.”

Youri graduated Turlock High School in 2002 and earned her Bachelor of Arts degree from Stanislaus State in political science. She earned her Masters of Fine Arts in Acting from The Actors Studio Drama School at Pace University and went on to land several roles in theatrical productions in New York. She also formed Monarch Moon Films with two other partners and together the three women have set an ambitious goal to film and release three films within the next year. Youri’s is the first of their endeavor.

Youri said they hope to have the film ready for screening in March and will be submitting it to film festivals worldwide.  The company is also planning a private screening in Turlock to give recognition to all the locals that took part in the movie making process, but the details have it have yet to be determined.