I directed this film, “ Living with the Odds” , after my sister Lisa asked if I had spoken to an old Fraternity Brother from Pepperdine University.
I did not really know Paul Bayne personally, but knew his brother.
Lisa insisted I call Paul because he was recently diagnosed with brain cancer. I was partially in shock to hear this but wanted to at least talk with him. I called the very next day.
Paul lived on the East Coast in Providence, Rhode Island.
Paul and I spoke for some length about his life and what he had left of it. He indicated he wanted to give back by writing a book about his last days that would encourage others to live life to the fullest. I said this story sounds more like a film project. I asked him if I could think it over for a few days and get back with him. He said sure let me know.
I called the very next day and told him I wanted to make a documentary chronicling his life, but telling a much bigger story that could help thousands of other cancer patients and their loved ones deal with such a diagnosis.
My vision was way beyond what Paul was thinking. I wanted to hear not only from Paul but from doctors treating him, top experts in Brain science, current survivors and mentors related to Glioblastoma.
The Main Character of the film is Paul Bayne who has GBM, but there is also another key character in the film who has survived and broken all records of survival with GBM.
His name is Charles Benoit.
Both characters are on the same trajectory in life both are dealing with a deadly disease. Both struggle with fears and depression and yet have an unwavering hope they will beat all the odds against them.
I wanted to capture what it was like to walk in Paul’s shoes by taking the viewer into his world to fully experience the complexities of daily life. It was important to me that the audience not go numb or stop listening. There was a fine balance between what the two characters suffered from brain cancer and the incredible force of hope and joy they both embodied and spoke of frequently.
I really strived to keep the film moving and visceral with surprising elements of emotion. This film will inspire you, drive you and enrich your life by showing you the true depths and highs of a life worth living. I wanted to discover the science, the spiritual, the physical and the emotional evidence to live longer.
Creating this film has helped me in so many ways to better understand the pain cancer patients endure every single day of their life.