Rebel Girl


When the grandfather she never knew dies suddenly, headstrong 14-year old Maisie and her artist dad Kurt leave the confines of their Brooklyn bubble to return to Kurt’s Minnesotan childhood home—where Maisie will upend old family patterns, fall in love, and force her family to confront each other and themselves… ultimately learning that forgiveness is only possible when you finally tell the truth.


Ever since her mom Caroline died eight years ago, 14-year old Maisie and her artist dad Kurt have been a team. Caroline was a punk rock force of nature–a riot grrrl back in the day–and her loss rocked both their worlds. Maisie and Kurt banded together to forge a creative, iconoclastic life, just the two of them. All these years, Kurt’s kept Maisie close–he’s already lost one love of his life, and he’ll be damned if he loses the other–but she’s starting to get curious about the world outside their Brooklyn bubble.

And Kurt’s been hiding something all this time. Years ago, Caroline made Kurt promise never to bring Maisie around his abusive alcoholic dad–so Kurt let Maisie believe that his parents had died long ago.

But early in our story, Kurt learns his Dad has actually just died, and Maisie finds herself on the road to the small, Minnesota lake town where she meets a family she never knew she had. After the funeral, Kurt wants to get out of there–but Maisie wants to stay. Kurt’s mom Gail wants to know her granddaughter, and his cool, funny sister Emma immediately clicks with Maisie, filling a need Maisie didn’t know was so strong. As the family is forced back together, Maisie brings everyone’s old alliances, resentments, and secrets to the surface. And when she meets Nhia–a spunky local girl–then she’s really got a reason to stay.

When a family friend’s son discovers their budding romance, he reacts badly, in a shocking violation that demands retribution. Maisie, inspired by her feminist punk mom’s legacy, enlists Nhia in capturing their revenge in a live video post, igniting a firestorm in this small lakeside community that will test the bonds of her family, push the truth into the open, and force her family into new ways of understanding and forgiving each other.

More About the Production

REBEL GIRL will be filmed in the Twin Cities and Lake Minnetonka area in August 2023 under a SAG Low Budget contract, working in partnership with the MN Film Commission, MN production company Rikshaw Films, local Twin Cities crews, and with support from FilmNorth. Minnesota has a strong crew base, stunning locations, and robust production infrastructure—much of which was seeded in the 1990s, when MN was host to iconic films such as Fargo, Beautiful Girls, Mallrats and a raft of studio and independent features that added millions of dollars to local economies and raised the profile of the state. That changed when Minnesota’s groundbreaking production tax credit program was defunded in 2002; by the time funding was reinstated in 2006, 20 states had developed competing production tax incentives, and since then, film production in Minnesota has struggled to regain the economic strength it had in its heyday. But we’re excited to be part of an exciting multi-faceted effort to bring lots more film production back to the Land of 10,000 Lakes.

Cast Highlights

Amy Madigan headshotGAIL: Amy Madigan

A powerful presence famous for her strong, luminous characters, Amy Madigan started off as a rock musician but made her big-screen debut as a pregnant teenage inmate in Love Child with Beau Bridges. She met and married Ed Harris when they played adulterous lovers in Places in the Heart, and earned an Oscar nomination as Gene Hackman’s angry daughter in Twice in a Lifetime. Scene-chewing supporting roles as John Candy’s girlfriend in Uncle Buck, Holly Hunter’s lawyer in television movie Roe vs. Wade (for which she earned a Golden Globe) and Annie Kinsella in the cinematic home run Field of Dreams cemented her onscreen legacy, but she would go on to notch roles in more recent successes like Pollock and Gone Baby Gone. In her later career, Madigan has landed juicy television roles, including a murderous sister on Carnivàle, the title character’s therapist on Grey’s Anatomy, and the mother of the mysterious sci-fi superagent Olivia on Fringe. With her intense but bubbly personality and a husky voice, she has truly mastered the art of delivering offbeat roles with power and panache.

Sadie Jensen-BlankMAISIE: Sadie Jensen-Blank

Sadie Jensen-Blank has grown up on film sets and in rehearsal rooms with her parents, Jessica Blank and Erik Jensen. Film credits include #HORROR with Chloe Sevigny, Natasha Lyonne and Timothy Hutton, which screened at Cannes and ran on IFC Midnight, and Almost Home, (Woodstock Film Festival, released in 2018 by Vertical Entertainment.) In 2022, Sadie beat out hundreds of young actors to make it to the final round of casting for a lead in an internationally known franchise series. Sadie is a passionate activist, performer, public speaker, musician and writer. She lives in Brooklyn with her parents, her dog Althea and her cat Peanut.

Erik Jensen headshotKURT: Erik Jensen

As an actor, Erik has appeared in over one hundred films and TV series, and on stage both on and Off- Broadway. He appeared regularly in both seasons of the ABC series For Life; other TV credits include major arcs on The Walking Dead, Mindhunter and Mr. Robot, appearances on The Americans, House of Cards, Elementary, The Blacklist, The Equalizer, Modern Love, Quantico, and nearly a hundred more, including his critically acclaimed portrayal of legendary New York Yankee Thurman Munson in The Bronx is Burning. Film credits include the upcoming Viral with Blair Underwood and Alfre Woodard, Black Knight, The Love Letter and more than two dozen indie Kilms. His theater credits as an actor include The Collaboration on Broadway opposite Paul Bettany and Jeremy Pope, the Pulitzer-Prize winning production of Disgraced at Lincoln Center, The Good Negro at the Public Theater, Arthur Kopit’s Y2K and Terrance McNally’s Corpus Christi at MTC, and Lester Bangs in his play How To Be A Rock Critic (Kirk Douglas, South Coast Rep, ArtsEmerson, Steppenwolf, The Public). Erik’s sci-Ki graphic novel The Reconcilers was published in 2010 to wide acclaim, and he is co- host and co-creator of the podcast BardQuest Empire, which brings together entertainment industry professionals who play Dungeons & Dragons to talk about the intersections of D&D and storytelling.


Cullen Moss headshotSCOTTY: Cullen Moss

Cullen Moss is best known for his portrayal of Sheriff Victor Shoupe in all four seasons of the NetFlix series Outer Banks, a massive hit with teen audiences that has given him an enormous and highly energized youth fanbase. Cullen got his start doing theatre as a child in North Carolina, and got his first roles in film and television on shows like Dawson’s Creek, The Notebook, The Secret Life of Bees, and The CW’s One Tree Hill, in which he played Junk Moretti for 42 episodes over 9 seasons. He recurs as Detective Rudy Cunningham opposite Bryan Cranston in Showtime’s Your Honor; other recent roles include Detective Russ Aborn in Apple TV’s Black Bird with Greg Kinnear; District Attorney Jim Hardin in HBO’s The Staircase, and Judge Smith in Barry Jenkins’s acclaimed limited series The Underground Railroad. Past TV credits include The Righteous Gemstones, True Detective, Queen Sugar, Hap and Leonard, Underground, Rectify, Vice Principals, Eastbound and Down, and many more. Cullen met Erik when they both acted on The Walking Dead and looks forward to sharing the screen with him again. He lives in Charleston SC, with his talented wife Madison, where they both do improv as company members of Theater 99.


Joel Marsh Garland headshotDARREN: Joel Marsh Garland

Joel Marsh Garland  is an award-winning actor and director. Best known for his role as C.O. Scott O’Neill in 42 episodes of Orange is the New Black, for which he won two SAG Awards. Joel has also appeared in countless other  series including Godfather of Harlem, The Last O.G., Billions, HBO’s The Deuce, Boardwalk Empire, JustiKied, The West Wing, Blue Bloods, Chicago Fire, The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, and many more. Notable film include Birdman (with Michael Keaton and Ed Norton), The Week Of, Limitless (with Bradley Cooper), The Bounty Hunter, The Night Listener, Ghost Team, The Grudge, Watching the Detectives, I Sell the Dead, Lady in the Water, and The Believer. He has appeared on Broadway in Of Mice and Men with James Franco and Chris O’Dowd, and Off-Broadway in Checkers at the Vineyard, and Essential Self Defense at Playwrights Horizons. He has extensive experience performing in Off-Off Broadway theater in NYC. His short Kilm 219 Gates won various awards for directing and editing. He has lent his voice to numerous video games, including Grand Theft Auto IV and V, and been the lead singer for an experimental circus/funk band.

Production Team

Written by Jessica Blank & Erik Jensen and Han Shan
Produced by Jessica Blank, Michael Cuomo, Han Shan, and Lillian LaSalle
Directed by Jessica Blank & Erik Jensen
Executive Produced by Bob Balaban

We are a nationally known, award-winning team that’s collaborated with multiple A-list Oscar & Emmy winners. Our team has sold films to major distributors, including HBO, Showtime, Netflix, and Amazon. The co-directors have worked with the Sundance Institute, on Broadway, on major TV networks, and with streamers. We have an Emmy award-winning Minneapolis-based production company, and cast from OUTER BANKS, THE WALKING DEAD, HOUSE OF CARDS, THE AMERICANS, CHICAGO FIRE, THE BLACKLIST. Cast for previous projects includes Danny Glover, Susan Sarandon, Vanessa Redgrave, Richard Dreyfuss. Overall, our lead creative team has worked on a combined 400 TV and film sets.