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Film Producer Donates Proceeds to American Cancer Society

Odell B. Ruffin | 9/9/2009, 6:13 p.m.

A local film producer, who has lost family and friends to an insidious disease, donated proceeds from her debut film to a national organization dedicated to eradicating the No. 2 killer of women in America.

Neeta Wooten, a novice filmmaker who lives in Upper Marlboro, Md., recently donated $1,500 in proceeds from her first film, €Misunderstandings€ to the American Cancer Society in the hopes of finding a cure for breast cancer.

€During the premier, I became a little emotional, because I have lost a lot of friends [and family members] to cancer recently. This was a way for me to honor their memory. I hope that this will inspire others to donate,€ said Wooten, a Hampton University graduate.

The American Cancer Society reported that 182,000 women were diagnosed with breast cancer in 2008. The disease remains the second most deadly form of cancer in women and accounted for more than 40,000 deaths last year.

Wooten€s film premiered Sun., Aug. 23 at the Cinema Arts Theatre in Fairfax, Va. The debut of €Misunderstandings€ brought tears to her eyes for several reasons, she said. €While the storyline has nothing to do with cancer, it was placed in my heart to put the cause at the forefront of the film because of the impact it€s had on my life,€ Wooten said.

The 90-minute film features Nicole, a professional woman, portrayed by Danita Mischelle, who discovers her significant other Rasan, portrayed by Walter Maxfield Jones, has become involved romantically with another woman.

However, Rasan insists that the situation is a complete misunderstanding. Both Nicole and Rasan are ridiculed by their friends who offer unsolicited advice to the couple, which further complicates matters. The two face daunting challenges as they prepare to take their relationship to the next level.

"It was [an] honor just being a part of this film. It warms my heart knowing that the money for this film is going towards a good cause," said Mischelle, who also lives in Upper Marlboro, Md.

Jones said that the film offered viewers a short respite from the daily grind. "This movie is one that I believe will keep people laughing. And, it€s always a pleasure having a role that can make people feel good, even if it€s only for a few hours," said Jones, a District resident.

Wooten, a 1992 graduate of School Without Walls in Northwest, said that while in high school she participated in the television show €Teen Summit€ which aired on Black Entertainment Television.

After graduation, Wooten further explored the entertainment industry as host for €Mad Flavor€ a local television show which aired on a Comcast Cable public access station from 2003 until 2006.

"After a few years in the business, I decided that I wanted to make my own mark. So, I started to write this film. I thought it would serve as a vehicle for actors," the former entertainment publicist said. €Once, I decided to donate profits from [Misunderstandings] to cancer charities for research, it was placed in my spirit to donate proceeds from all of my films to charities.€