Andrew Littlefield is passionate about two things: film-making and finding a cure for breast cancer.
The 27-year-old Sandstone resident has found a way to combine these two passions by filming a documentary about the Avon Foundation’s Avon Walk for Breast Cancer in Chicago. Littlefield himself will be walking up to 39 miles (a marathon and a half) over two days this summer: June 2 and 3.
Like all of the other participants, he has committed to raising at least $1,800 to fund breast cancer research and to help the medically under-served.
“It’s the biggest challenge I’ve ever taken on, but I’m very excited about doing it because I know it will make a real difference to the millions of people affected by breast cancer,” he writes in his fundraising letter.
That’s an amazing statement from a young man who has been devoting his weekends to making independent films with others who share his passion. I caught up with him at the Indiana Actors.com Film Festival, where the first film he directed, “The Contract,” premiered last month.
Even as we spoke about the excitement and challenges of producing a zero-budget film, Littlefield pointed out that another woman had just been diagnosed with breast cancer during the time of our brief conversation.
According to the Avon Foundation, every three minutes in the United States, someone is diagnosed with the disease. To Littlefield, it’s more than just a grim statistic. His mother died of breast cancer eight years ago.
Still today, emotions burst forth in the tall, slender young man when he starts to talk about that experience. He feels compelled to do something to help other families affected by this disease. Using his skills as a filmmaker seemed like a great way to sort through his own emotions while reaching out to others.
“It’s something I feel I need to do personally,” said Littlefield, who wore the signature pink ribbon for breast cancer awareness on his lapel to the March 10 film festival at Pavilion Cinemas in Brownsburg.
The festival, organized by Steve “Papaw” Pyatte, showcased about two dozen independent films, with proceeds from admission going to the Iacocca Foundation for juvenile (type 1) diabetes research. Littlefield was a director of photography for Pyatte’s film, “Crossroads,” which deals with the consequences of drunk driving, and also served as director of photography for a feature-length comedy, “Through a Fisheye,” written and directed by Lawrence Township resident Gerald Peterson.
Both Pyatte and Peterson praised Littlefield’s talent as an up-and-coming filmmaker. The 2002 graduate of the film school at the University of Pittsburg works as a pharmacy technician for Eli Lilly and Walgreens when he’s not making movies.
“The Contract,” a 34-minute horror film, took three intensive weekends to film with a cast of unpaid actors from Indiana Actors.com.
“Everyone’s doing it for passion,” Littlefield said. “We work 12-hour days on the weekends.”
He says working on “The Contract” and the other films has given him the experience necessary to do a worthy job on his upcoming documentary. He plans to profile a wife and mother who is a breast cancer survivor of 31 years and will be participating with her family in the Avon Walk.
“I want to incorporate my story as well,” he added. “It’s going to be hard. It’s a human experience. It’s an issue a lot of people can relate to.”
Avon Walks are held in large cities around the U.S. with money raised going to medical research, education and early detection programs, clinical care and support services. To learn more about the walk, visit . To help Littlefield meet his $1,800 goal, contact him at email@example.com.