Focus Forward Event Highlights

October 2017 Event | Santa Monica, CA.

Listen while you watch our Focus Forward event in Santa Monica, CA unfold. 

Photo Credit: David Erickson Photography

Music Credit: Laurie Anne Armour with LA Armour Music.

"The Love Effect" Trailer

Watch Here

Enjoy the trailer for the film "The Love Effect" that we shared during our Focus Forward Event at The Annenberg Beach House in Santa Monica! "The Love Effect" is a story of empathy and friendship in the face of loss (winner of Best Short Film and Best Director at the 2016 Santa Monica Film Festival. 

Drue Metz | Director.Writer and Tyler Atkins | Actor.Writer gave an interactive Q&A at the end of this amazing film that was absolutely magical!  

Meet The Director And Cast

Drue Metz || Director, Co-Writer, Executive Producer

Drue has been writing and directing his entire life. He has trained at some of the best films school in the world (CSULB, UCLA, USC) and has written, directed, produced or contributed to over 60 films and videos to date. He has directed branded content for APPLE INC, PERSOL SUNGLASSES and has received numerous awards for his short films and screenplays.    


Recently, Drue directed part of JAMES FRANCO'S feature film adaptation of DON QUIXOTE. Metz is currently directing commercials and music videos for production companies Swanky Flicks & Replay Collective and just finished directing and co-writing a television pilot for Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Dany Garcia’s SEVEN BUCKS PRODUCTIONS. 

Tyler Atkins || The role of TOM and Co-Writer, Executive Producer

Tyler is an Australian actor, surfer, raw food chef and yoga teacher, embraces with spirit and joy his youth and beach culture, with an earthy, fit and healthy attitude to life and living, being at one with the earth, nature, sport, lifestyle.   


In late 2013 Tyler scored his first acting role on the award winning new drama Puberty Blues, which has been one of Channel 10’s best TV dramas. This role embraced his surfing lifestyle and was targeted to a youth audience. Since then Tyler has recently moved to Los Angeles to pursue his acting dream and in just a few months Tyler has already booked roles in US TELEVISION & FILM. Tyler also signed with powerhouse agent Justin Deanda at ICM PARTNERS. 


Tyler was diagnosed with a kidney disease in late 2010, where he spent a year and a half in hospitals, over five operations, during which he turned his life around to healthy organic eating, and a fresh, positive and strong outlook. Learning to overcome fear, being comfortable in solitary times, soul searching, becoming more conscious, dropping alcohol and gaining insight and clarity, Tyler's new journey in the second part of his life has blossomed. 

Ari Blinder || The role of ROBBIE and Co-Writer, Executive Producer

Ari started his acting career in Atlanta, GA after graduating from Emory University with a B.A. in Film & Theatre Studies. He then came to Los Angeles and studied Meisner Technique at The Ruskin School of Acting and later at Margie Haber Studio where he now teaches.


Ari has had the pleasure of working on some of the most exciting shows on TV: “Homeland” (Showtime), “The Mentalist” (CBS), “Banshee” (Cinemax), and many others. Additionally, Ari writes and produces his own work and his film "The Gerstein Report" played at the Cannes Film Festival.


In his free time Ari enjoys rock climbing and is actively involved with the Crohn's and Colitis Foundation of America. He is also an ambassador for Kidney Health Australia and AIME (Australian indigenous mentoring experience). 

Jessica Blackmore || The role of PIA

Jessica caught the acting bug while studying political science at University of Central Florida in 2008. She began working on student films at Full Sail, and quickly progressed to independent films within a few months. A year later she drove cross country to fulfill her aspirations in California with her fiancée and Boston Terrier in tow. 


Since moving, Jessica has appeared in over 60 commercials, which have given her the opportunity to pursue her other passion of traveling the world. Outside of acting, Jessica always has her nose in a book, and supports many charities in the protection of animals. 

Bulleit || The role of BISKITS

Bulleit was specifically chosen and trained for THE LOVE EFFECT film by “The Pooch Coach”, Beverly Ulbrich. In addition to making sure no animal was harmed on set, Beverly provided personal training for Bulleit and her family to make sure it was a positive and good experience for her and the owner.    


Beverly is a dog training expert and in addition to Animal Training and wrangling for film and television she specializes private and personalized empathic dog training and behavior problem solving. She is heavily involved in national dog services and has an extensive background in animal care and awareness.

The Love Effect || Awards

Winner GRAND JURY PRIZE 2016 Santa Monica International Film Festival  

Winner BEST DIRECTOR   

Nominated for Best Lead Actor, Best Original Screenplay and Best Cinematography  

Winner BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY - 2016 Malibu International Film Festival  

Winner of BEST ACTOR - Tyler Atkins - Hollywood Short Film Festival 


Nominated for a 2016 SAMHSA Voice Award  

Official Selection: 2016 NYC Mental Health Film Festival  

Official Selection:  2016 Green Bay Film Festival  

Official Selection: 2016 MHA Mental Health Film Festival   

International Premiere:  Sydney, Australia - TBA  

Meet the Trainers

October 2017 at The Annenberg Beach House

Kari Little || Entrepreneur.Speaker.Trainer

Kari is the founder & CEO of Live Now LLC, speaker, trainer, mentor, and wife.


Kari has 30+ years of business experience. Her background includes sales, consulting, project management, and entrepreneurial experience. There have been successes and losses during these years and she chooses to view the losses as "lessons" learned and growth opportunities. 


She has suffered tragedies involving family, friends and business colleagues and these have been her greatest challenge. However, her personal development work and healing have given her the passion to reach out and help others overcome their own stories of loss.


She created Live Now LLC, to share her wisdom and insights through compassionate workshops and training sessions. Her mission is to encourage others to share their stories, provide tools to overcome adversity, learn, grow, and empower people to Live Now Not Later


"It's never too late to create a plan and reach your biggest dreams and goals."    Kari Little  

Sarah Monares || Counselor.Speaker.Life Intended Coach

Sarah is a counselor, speaker, mentor, and Life Intended Coach.  In addition to running two successful businesses, she is also a wife and a mom of two.


Sarah has worked with women for over 12 years and is an expert in personal growth and development. Her education and personal experiences, coupled with her work with women, make her a point person when it comes to smashing through barriers and creating the life you desire.  


She has created a supportive, educational, and strength based platform to help women grow and expand within the deepest sense of themselves, to achieve their greatest potential. 


Her mission is to empower women with the clarity, confidence, and direction required to become truly happy and successful in personal and professional life. She is motivated by the belief that we all have gifts and talents to share. We are made to uplift, connect, and share our gifts with others. She has a strong desire to help women fully embrace those gifts, and who they truly are, to live their dreams with confidence and fulfillment.


"One of the most powerful forces in the world is a woman who walks in her purpose, knows her worth, and is determined to rise."   Sarah Monares

Jessika Loving || Coach.Entrepreneur

Jessika Loving is a life coach, wife, mother of two, and entrepreneur, dedicated to helping you live your most fulfilled life.


10 years ago, Jessika gave up the security of a 9-5 and built her first multi-six figure business from the ground up - a fitness company. The blood sweat and tears was shared by her clients in their efforts to lose weight and get in the best shape of their lives. As a certified life coach, she helped them obtain lasting results and truly transform their lives. Since then, Jessika has built multiple businesses and help others do the same. 


Whether you’re stuck in your business or in your personal life, Jessika will help you get exactly where you want to be.


"Life is short. You deserve to live it to the fullest and that is what I am here to help you do."   Jessika Loving


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