Andrew Allen’s multiprotagonist drama, Glow, spent years in the making. And the Dallas indie filmmaker says he basically went broke filming it. But his debut feature-length film is finally here and set for a world premiere tonight, Aug. 29, at Texas Theatre.
Allen says the film hinges on realism and “doesn’t let anyone off the hook.” The story draws several characters who are trying to make sense of pain and suffering toward a single theme: “Where do we go from here?”
One of those characters is Stacy, a single mom whom Allen says “is already kind of down in the dumps and fighting for her happiness” when (spoiler alert) an electrical fire burns her home to the ground within the first 10 minutes of the film.
The film’s characters could hail from any city. Yet the scenes were filmed around Dallas and Austin — except for the house fire, which Allen says was done in Arkansas because he found a place he could burn down for free.
The idea for Glow seeded when Allen, now 27, was a rebellious and frustrated teenager. He had studied film at the University of Texas at Austin and says he was tired of hearing that it would be years before he could produce a feature film.
“I just wanted to say, ‘To hell with that whole system,’ and just show people you can do it yourself,” he says, adding that he knew it wouldn’t be easy.
Allen says that while the internet has its downsides, a positive thing for his generation is that “the gatekeeper hierarchy” is losing steam, particularly in media, and “things really are becoming democratized.”
“You can make a feature on a phone,” he says. “Tangerine got into Sundance from an iPhone.”
Allen, who initially produced some “bad secret-agent films” on a…