Experiencing Interruptions?

Aaron With 2 A's

Meet Aaron. He's starting his 2nd career at age 65... As an actor. What could go wrong?.. AARON WITH 2 A'S is a short comedy-drama about learning to get out of your own head.

- "AARON is a small masterpiece that touches the soul of everyone who dedicates their life to an all-consuming passion." - Nelson Farber, Culture Journalist/Filmmaker

- “AARON poignantly captures the delicious freedom of taking risks to live more authentically, as well as the subsequent insecurities that come along with those risks." - Olivia Anderson, Alexandria Times

- "AARON is a beautifully made film...(with a) wonderful cast...fine direction...and a touching quality to the story; every actor has to deal with those elements of rejection. Aaron's vulnerability and humanity were right there raw and in front of the camera." - Jean-Louis Rodrigue, Master Teacher/Director/Coach to the Stars, including Leonardo DiCaprio, Margot Robbie, Christian Bale

Directed by award-winning filmmaker Michael Goldburg and starring Steve Lichtenstein (TV's "Bull"), Pamela Morgan (TV's "Julia" and "City on a Hill"), and Anthony Robert Grasso (TV's "Jessica Jones" and "Gotham") whose work has screened at the Sundance Film Festival.

  • Michael Goldburg
    Director
    Sure-Fire, What's Eating Dad?, Justice
  • Steve Lichtenstein
    Writer
  • Michael Goldburg
    Writer
    Sure Fire
  • Mark Resnik
    Writer
  • Montana Rock
    Writer
  • Steve Lichtenstein
    Producer
    Justice
  • Randi Sloane
    Producer
  • Steve Lichtenstein
    Key Cast
    "Aaron Goldman"
    BULL, IN-FIDELITY
  • Anthony Robert Grasso
    Key Cast
    "Bert"
    Long Commute, FBI, Jessica Jones, Gotham, Law and Order, Person of Interest
  • Pamela Jayne Morgan
    Key Cast
    "Judy Goldman"
    City On A Hill, Julia, Law and Order SVU, The Girl in the Attic
  • Project Type:
    Short
  • Runtime:
    16 minutes 59 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    March 15, 2022
  • Production Budget:
    37,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
    English
  • Shooting Format:
    RED
  • Film Color:
    Color
  • First-time Filmmaker:
    No
  • Student Project:
    No
  • Twin Cities Film Festival
    Minneapolis, Minnesota
    United States
    October 20, 2023
    Minnesota Premiere
    Official Selection
  • Oxford Film Festival
    Oxford, MS
    United States
    March 4, 2023
    Mississippi
    Official Selection
  • Beaufort International Film Festival
    Beaufort, SC
    United States
    February 22, 2023
    South Carolina Premiere
    NOMINATED: BEST COMEDY
  • DC Short International Film Fest 2023
    Washington DC
    United States
    September 21, 2023
    Washington DC
    Official Selection
  • Charlotte Film Festival
    Charlotte, NC
    United States
    September 29, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Coney Island Film Festival
    Brooklyn, NY
    United States
    May 6, 2023
    WINNER: BEST DRAMA SHORT
  • San Francisco Short Film Festival
    San Francisco
    United States
    October 14, 2023
    San Francisco Premiere
    WINNER - BEST US DRAMA
  • Lighthouse International Film Festival
    Long Beach Island, New Jersey
    United States
    June 4, 2022
    New Jersey Premiere
    Official Selection
  • Blue Whiskey Independent Film Festival
    Chicago, IL
    United States
    July 14, 2023
    Illinois Premiere
    Official Selection
  • Northern Virginia International Film Festival
    Fairfax, VA
    United States
    April 14, 2023
    WINNER: BEST ACTOR - SHORT FILM - STEVE LICHTENSTEIN / NOMINATED: BEST SHORT, BEST DIRECTOR - SHORT, BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY - SHORT, BEST SOUNDSCAPE - SHORT
  • NYLIFF New York Long Island Film Festival
    Long Island, NY
    United States
    October 22, 2022
    WINNER: BEST DIRECTOR - MICHAEL GOLDBURG / NOMINATED: BEST SHORT, BEST ACTOR, BEST SOUND, BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY, BEST EDITING
  • San Antonio Film Festival
    San Antonio, TX
    United States
    August 5, 2023
    Official Selection
  • The Valley Film Festival
    North Hollywood, CA
    United States
    August 5, 2022
    Official Selection
  • The Macro Film Festival
    Orlando, Fl
    United States
    September 22, 2023
    WINNER - BEST ACTOR STEVE LICHTENSTEIN
  • BlackBird Film Festival
    Cortland, NY
    United States
    April 28, 2023
    WINNER: CINEMA WRITING AWARD - STEVE LICHTENSTEIN, MICHAEL GOLDBURG, MARK RESNIK, MONTANA ROCK
  • New Jersey Web Festival
    Montclair, NJ
    United States
    September 23, 2023
    WINNER BEST WRITING (COMEDIC) NOMINATED: BEST ACTOR COMEDY IN A COMEDY, BEST WRITING (COMEDIC), OUTSTANDING SHORT FILM, OUTSTANDING COMEDY
  • HollyShorts Monthly Series
    Hollywood, CA
    United States
    March 29, 2023
    Official Selection
  • Festival of Cinema NYC
    Forest Hills, NY
    United States
    August 13, 2023
    NOMINATED - BEST DIRECTOR SHORT
  • Alexandria Film Festival
    Alexandria, Va
    United States
    November 12, 2022
    Virginia Premiere
    Official Selection
  • Manhattan Film Festival
    New York City, NY
    United States
    June 16, 2023
    WINNER - BEST CAST - SHORT
  • San Pedro International Film Festival
    San Pedro, CA
    United States
    February 2, 2023
    Official Selection
  • Durango Independent Film Festival
    Durango, Co
    United States
    March 3, 2023
    Official Selection
  • Fargo Film Festival
    Fargo, ND
    United States
    March 24, 2023
    North Dakota
    Official Selection
  • Chain Film Festival
    New York, NY
    United States
    August 11, 2023
    Official Selection
  • Chandler International Film Festival
    Chandler, AZ
    United States
    January 26, 2023
    NOMINATED: BEST COMEDY SHORT
  • ARPA International Film Festival
    Los Angeles, CA
    United States
    November 4, 2022
  • Long Island International Film Expo (LIIFE)
    Long Island, NY
    United States
    July 22, 2023
    Official Selection
  • Indy Film Fest
    Indianapolis, IN
    United States
    April 22, 2023
    Official Selection
  • Mendocino Film Festival
    Mendocino, CA
    United States
    June 3, 2023
    Official Selection
  • Golden Door International Film Festival
    Jersey City, NJ
    United States
    June 23, 2023
    NOMINATED - BEST ACTOR SHORT, BEST FILM SHORT
  • Art of Brooklyn Film Festival
    Brooklyn, NY
    United States
    June 3, 2023
    Official Selection
  • Ft. Myers Film Festival
    Ft. Myers, FL
    United States
    May 20, 2023
    Official Selection
  • Roosevelt Island Film Festival
    New York, New York
    United States
    June 25, 2022
    Official Selection
  • New York No Limits Film Series
    New York
    United States
    August 11, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Peekskill Film Festival
    Peekskill, New York
    United States
    June 25, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Long Beach International Film Festival
    Long Island, New York
    United States
    July 27, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Black Bear Film Festival
    Millford, PA
    United States
    October 15, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Sioux City International Film Festival
    Sioux City, IA
    United States
    October 1, 2022
    Official selection
  • ME Film Festival
    Midgeville, GA
    United States
    October 22, 2022
    NOMINATED: BEST COMEDY SHORT
  • Israel Brief Encounters
    Ramat Gan
    Israel
    October 9, 2023
    NOMINATED - BEST LIVE ACTION SHORT, BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY, BEST EDITING, BEST ACTOR, BEST ORIGINAL STORY, BEST CAST ENSEMBLE, BEST DIRECTOR
  • Crown Heights Film Festival
    Brooklyn, NY
    United States
    October 15, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Portland Comedy Festival
    Portland
    United States
    November 13, 2022
    NOMINATED: BEST ROMANTIC COMEDY
  • SMODCastle Film Festival
    Leanardo, New Jersey
    United States
    November 30, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Soma Film Festival
    Maplewood, NJ
    United States
    October 22, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Katra Film Series
    New York, NY
    United States
    October 13, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Liverpool Indie Awards // LIA
    Liverpool
    United Kingdom
    March 24, 2024
    Official Selection
  • Los Angeles Indie Film Festival
    Los Angeles, CA
    United States
    March 23, 2023
    Official Selection
  • Boston Film Festival
    Boston, MA
    United States
    September 28, 2023
    Official Selection
  • Your Way International Film Festival
    Valetta
    Malta
    October 31, 2023
    Malta Premiere
    HONORABLE MENTION - BEST DRAMA
  • Catskill International Film Festival
    Middletown, NY
    United States
    October 26, 2023
    Official Selection
  • Phoenix Rising International Film Festival
    London
    United Kingdom
    November 4, 2023
    NOMINATED - BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS, BEST COMEDY FILM
  • Cannes Film Awards
    Cannes
    France
    April 29, 2023
    Official Selection
  • Independent Days International Film Festival
    Karlsruhe
    Germany
    April 13, 2024
    German Premiere
    Official Selection
Director Biography - Michael Goldburg

MICHAEL GOLDBURG is an award-winning writer/director and M.F.A. alum of NYU's Graduate Film Program. His short films have screened at over 100 festivals, including his horror comedy, WHAT'S EATING DAD?, which screened in over 50 festivals, won multiple awards, and is featured on Amazon Prime. Michael's other short comedy, SURE-FIRE, screened in over 30 festivals and won or was nominated for multiple awards, including Best Director, Best Comedy, and Best Actor for PJ Marshall (TV's "Mindhunter" and "Marvelous Mrs. Maisel"). The short also won the support of Sony Pictures Classics and Bleecker Street who are both interested in distributing the feature version. Michael's celebrated feature screenplay for SURE-FIRE placed in numerous top screenwriting competitions, including ScreenCraft, Shore Scripts, Filmmatic, and CineStory. The script is also a top-ranked script on Coverfly, a leading industry platform to discover outstanding screenplays. Michael’s team for the SURE-FIRE feature includes advisor Joe Pirro, Head of Production at Symbolic Exchange ("The Assistant"), founded by James Schamus (former CEO of Focus Features), who feels Michael is “part of the next wave of emerging filmmakers to break through to wider audiences.” Michael is also developing a feature adaptation of a darkly comic novel by the former book editor of "The Chicago Tribune,” which was accepted into Sundance Collab with Oscar-nominated screenwriter and advisor Naomi Foner. Michael has worked with creators from The Onion and Comedy Central, and his acclaimed short films are featured on Amazon Prime and Funny or Die. He has also worked as a script consultant for ScriptLaunch and co-founded Directors Collective NYC in Brooklyn.

Add Director Biography
Director Statement

I was invited to direct “Aaron with Two A’s” by Steve Lichtenstein, an actor and friend who I had directed several times in my own work. I immediately said yes as I was eager to work with him again – this time with Steve as lead actor, producer, and co-writer, on a film that I knew was deeply personal to him. With the script, I admired the courage with which he was willing to explore his own demons and doubts as a creative person – particularly for someone of retirement age pursuing acting as a second career – and how difficult that is to balance with other relationships in his personal life. I shared many of the same struggles myself as a writer and director. And I figured a lot of other people, not just artists, would identify with Aaron trying to get out of his own way, stop listening to those negative voices in his head, and go for it in his new career in a way that honors and balances other important personal relationships. I think it’s the struggle – and ideal – that all of us are aiming for.

As director, I worked closely with Steve and all the department heads, particularly the talented cinematographer Toru Nishikubo, to develop the look of the film. One of our visual references was the work of legendary DP Gordon Willis and his work on New York City films, including “Manhattan” and “Annie Hall,” which favored longer takes, naturalistic lighting, and foregrounding New York as another character in the film. With the compositions, I also wanted to emphasize the distance between Aaron and the other major characters, particularly his wife, Judy, as he’s often alienated in his own head – until he draws closer to other characters in the latter part of the film. We start with wider shots and “singles” – foregrounding Aaron’s psychological “aloneness” – and then transition to more over-the-shoulder and “two shots” in the latter part of the film which integrate him more with other characters. We charted a similar aesthetic all the way through color grading with our skilled colorist, Dave Pultz, where our overall look went from cooler tones in the first part of the film – particularly in the apartment where Aaron is at odds with Judy – to a warmer pallet as Aaron opens up to his mentor, Bert, and finally connects with Judy and begins to transform his life.

My other key relationships were the actors, led by the indomitable Steve Lichtenstein. Since Steve was basing the film more or less on his own life, I wanted to honor that and lean into everything he could tell me about his real story and how we could then transmute that into drama. I had to find the right balance of approaching Steve not as himself but as the character, “Aaron” – who was both him and not him – and making sure his work, as well as everyone else’s, was honest and authentic. Another good challenge was creating a “dramedy,” or a drama that had some elements of comedy in it. To that end, I always aimed for naturalism but had to find the right tone to integrate the comedy as well. I looked to films like “Sideways,” where a similar character was going through his own struggle as an artist, in serious and comic ways. In fact, I asked our gifted composer, Louis King, to base his score on Rolfe Kent’s jazzy yet plaintive score for "Sideways" to ground “Aaron’s” tone and world.

I’m probably most proud of the climax of our film – when Aaron is doing final battle with all the voices in his head in a busy Times Square – where our whole team synced up perfectly to amplify Aaron’s chaotic internal battle. As I stressed to our accomplished editor Steve Boghossian that the more we worked on the film, we had to find more ways to portray Aaron’s inner conflict with himself, Steve dove into that sequence with gusto, cutting a dynamic “internal” montage of Aaron confronting his demons. Then Adrian Bosi, our first-rate sound designer, overlapped and distorted those voices brilliantly while Louis’ score climaxes in a dizzying crescendo – while Steve Lichtenstein gives a moving and grounded performance, in the middle of bustling Times Square, captured amazingly by our deft DP, Toru. As a director, it doesn’t get any better than that. I strive to convey my vision of the scene – and the film – to my collaborators, and they listen, interpret, and elevate the material well beyond what I imagined it could be. I’m inspired and honored to be part of “Aaron with Two A’s,” and I’m looking forward to sharing its inspiring message with the world.