Monday, September 14, 2015

'Humane Resources' Screening at LA Indie Film Fest on September 18

Shaun Baer stars in Humane Resources.
Humane Resources, a Chicago based original series set in a local animal shelter, follows David (Shaun Baer), a staffer whose future is uncertain, and the rest of the staff as they prepare for their annual fundraiser.

Humane Resources is an official selection for the LA Indie Film Fest in Los Angeles, CA. Two episodes will be screening as part of a night of shorts Friday, September 18 at 8 p.m. Creator Shaun Baer and Producer Steven Callas will be part of the a Q&A following the screening. Humane Resources was featured in the Austin Web Festival in Austin, TX June of 2015. Shaun Baer was nominated for Best Actor in a Lead Role, and Hillary Marren was nominated for Best Actress in a Supporting Role at the Austin Web Fest.

As seen through the eyes of David, this earnest, character driven comedy challenges the perception of homeless pets. David ultimately learns that doing good work means more than building a resume. Viewers have said Humane Resources is “Fantastic! Great sound, lighting, editing, acting... and great writing, too!” and “Super cute!”

What began as a creative project grew into something a little more personal. “Once I started delving into the research behind homeless pets in Chicago and nationwide, I was shocked and saddened to realize the outrageous numbers involved,” said show’s creator and lead actor Shaun Baer. “Chicago Area Shelter Alliance (CASA) indicated that, in a given year, there can be upwards of 500,000 feral cats in Chicago. When you look at local shelters’ intake volume, some centers can see 25,000 animals come through in a year. One of the most surprising numbers was that of what are called ‘owner surrenders.’ One center had almost 750 dogs and cats under that category alone.”

While Illinois ranks first in animal protection laws, according to a 2013 report by the Animal Defense League Fund, Baer and producer Steven Callas saw the opportunity to do more with Humane Resources than simply entertain. “Many of our cast and crew have rescue animals in their homes,” said Callas, “and we saw a chance to let David’s discovery of the need for the center be a way to shed some light on the issue.”

Humane Resources used veterinary clinic Animal House of Chicago and cat shelter Harmony House for Cats for several locations, and the National Anti-Cruelty Society generously provided costume and set dressing pieces during production. “We’re interested in developing partnerships with more local shelters,” said Baer. “We’d love for our show to be the hook that gets even one homeless pet a foster family or forever home.” The Humane Resources Facebook page and Twitter feed posts adoption notices and calls to action from local shelters. “The more followers we can get, the more we can connect pet lovers to available local pets in need.”

The Humane Resources ensemble cast includes: Steppenwolf ensemble member Austin Pendleton (My Cousin Vinny, What’s Up, Doc?), Shaun Baer (DudesScotty Works OUT), Hillary Marren (Mob Doctor), Chris Brickhouse (The Dreamers, Scotty Works OUT), Linda Rudy, Mallory Backstrom, Khaki Pixley and Greg Davies.

The Humane Resources creative staff includes: Producer Steven Callas (Empire, Iceland) veteran Chicago actor Kurt Naebig (Chicago PD, Road to Perdition) and newcomer Alex Thompson (Calumet), with cinematography by Eddie Avinashi, editing by Sally O’Brien, color by Peilin Tan, and sound by Derek O’Rourke. Humane Resources was shot on-location in Chicago.

Season One’s seven episodes are available for free at

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