Private Project

When Flames Dance: A Colorful Evening

When a Jewish teen clashes with a member of the Hitler Youth, they discover their shared love of dance, and through it…their love for each other.

  • Michael Mike Canon
    When a Flame Stands Still, CA・DENCE, The Last Ten Seconds
  • Michael Mike Canon
    When a Flame Stands Still, CA・DENCE, The Last Ten Seconds
  • Project Type:
    Short Script
  • Genres:
    Dance, Drama, ROMANCE, LGBTQ+
  • Number of Pages:
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Language:
  • First-time Screenwriter:
  • Student Project:
Writer Biography - Michael Mike Canon

Michael Mike Canon is a modern-day alchemist who transforms emotions into stories that help audiences heal. As the son of immigrants who fled violence, persecution, and war, Canon grew up hearing real human stories infused with his mother’s sensational details and his father’s sense of humor. Thus, Canon is known for exploring deep, dark, and challenging subject matters with a spark of magic & love.

His 35mm thesis, When a Flame Stands Still (2016), is a love story in the midst of the Holocaust that touched audiences around the globe. The film shot Canon to Variety’s list of the “Top Students to Watch,” and earned him ongoing support from BAFTA and the HFPA. Canon’s 16mm short, C A·D E N C E (2021), is a walk through trauma in the mind of a veteran. Filmed safely during the pandemic, it had its world premiere at Dances with Films, received “First Place Experimental” at the USA Film Festival, and was featured by the International Committee of the Red Cross in Japan.

At the age of 16, Canon skipped school to attend Robert Mckee’s “Story” seminar, where he was the youngest writer in attendance. While earning his B.A. in Cinema & Television Arts, Canon found real-life experience as a camera operator for Val Kilmer, served as a production assistant on multiple studio pictures, and later became a story analyst for Mad Chance Productions (American Sniper).

During the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic, Canon launched his multi-branch organization, Stand Still Studios LLC. Through the use of literature, entertainment, and other mediums, its mission is to capture, create, and curate stories that remind audiences, “when life comes to a standstill, we still stand.”

Canon is currently directing a documentary about a female artist during an ongoing war and creating a multi-medium book. In between projects, Canon upholsters his own furniture, directs dance films, and dances professionally himself.

Yet one of his truest joys is working as a videographer for Holocaust Museum L.A, where he also mentors young students on documentary filmmaking. Together, they bring the true stories of survivors to light, to life, and to you.

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Writer Statement

Dear Trusted Reader,

You are cordially invited to a dance that will take place on Saturday evening, March 2nd, 1940, at the Curiohaus in Hamburg, Germany. It will be a vibrant, magical and COLORFUL EVENING.

WHEN FLAMES DANCE is a short film that commemorates all the love stories that were lost in the Holocaust. It is often hard to comprehend the loss of life, or empathize with the loss of someone that we never knew, but diving into the unknown, through love, makes it possible.

GENRE: The film may be described as CALL ME BY YOUR NAME meets WEST SIDE STORY in Nazi Germany, with the musical elements of CABARET.

EDITING: Jazz & Swing are a major part of this picture. Thus, the film's editing style will have a syncopated rhythm that achieves a “visual jazz” for the dance scenes.

SOUND: Our post-sound designer will elevate the meaning of every frame, through auditory replacement techniques.

CINEMATOGRAPHY: While most scenes will be done in long takes, the dance scenes will be filmed in quick cuts to mimic the various instruments heard in the background.

WHEN FLAMES DANCE is a romance that invites people to imagine the love stories of people from all conflicts that were affected by the decisions of world governments. My goal is to help grow the portal of empathy in our world of war, through helping people imagine that everyone has a love story.
 And more-so than that, everyone is a love story.

A look-book for this project is available, a sizzle reel is available, and the feature script is complete too!