Fires roar and horses run...

Project type: Documentary Feature
Project status: Production
Director: Wyatt Maw
Producer: Julie Hook
Cinematographer: Hatti Beanland
Help independent filmmakers tell their stories.
Make a donation to Ashland today.

Film Independent’s Fiscal Sponsorship program opens the door to nonprofit funding for independent filmmakers and media artists. Donate today and help bring Ashland to life.


Children train horses during fire season on the plains of Eastern Montana.


Raindrops are good as gold, and the grasses are brittle underfoot. The sky is the color of a ripe peach. This is fire season in Montana and for the denizens of this landscape, the fires are almost like an old friend, dependable, always on time. But there’s a real struggle happening here as people and animals alike sag under the hot sun. What happens when we run out of water? This is the question on the tip of every mind. Families yearn to stay ahead, but living on the prairie with ever dwindling resources takes its toll.

One family decides to take matters into their own hands and begins a horse selling business. The children train the horses and sell them off and in this way they can move to another ranch nearby. This new ranch, a paradise in their eyes where the pastures are greener, contains a natural spring with plenty of water to sustain their lifestyle. They just need to sell enough horses.

Make a donation to Ashland.

Meet the Filmmakers

Wyatt Maw — Director

Wyatt Maw is an award winning filmmaker and photographer originally hailing from the mountains of Montana, now based in Los Angeles. A directing graduate of the prestigious American Film Institute Conservatory, his thesis film played in festivals worldwide and was a semi-finalist for the Student Academy Awards. Also an accomplished musician, he has won the national fiddling championship in Weiser, Idaho and recorded with renowned old-time and bluegrass artists.

Since 2015, he has spent considerable time in Eastern Montana researching and gathering information for a series of films about the modern day conflicts between the Northern Cheyenne, white ranchers, and the land. The first of these films, Ashland, is currently in production with support from Film Independent and the Big Sky Film Grant.

Julie Hook — Producer

After graduating from Emerson College with a BFA in Film Production, Julie Hook began her career producing independent short films and short-form content and commercials for numerous A-list production companies, including Anonymous Content, Prettybird and Epoch Films. Since 2014, Julie has worked alongside veteran producer Sarah Green on such notable films as Jeff Nichols’ Midnight Special and Loving and Terrence Malick’s IMAX documentary Voyage of Time, Knight of Cups and Song to Song, Malick’s 2017 narrative features. Julie is currently an Associate Producer on HBO Films’ adaptation of Fahrenheit 451, written and directed by Ramin Bahrani, currently in post-production.

Hatti Beanland — Cinematographer

Hatti is a Director of Photography originally from Suffolk, England, now living and working in the USA. Known for shooting in rugged environments, she lived on an island in the middle of the Bering Sea, Alaska, filming for the Discovery Channel for two winters. She started her career in London working as a camera assistant on TV dramas, feature films, commercials and music videos and also trained as a Steadicam operator, shooting all over Europe. Due to her understanding of digital formats, she worked as an onset digital imaging technician supporting and providing onset color management for some of the best cinematographers in the business. Past films include Oscar winning Gravity(Emmanuel Lubezki AMC, ASC), Rush (Anthony Dod Mantle BSC, ASC) and the opening of the 2012 London Olympics. She counts among her mentors Alwin Küchler BSC, and Seamus McGarvey BSC ASC.

Hatti studied Fine Art at Glasgow School of Art and a sponsorship from Actor/Director Ralph Fiennes allowed her to attend the American Film Institute Conservatory, cinematography MFA program in Los Angeles. Hatti was recently selected as a BAFTA Newcomer and is also one of the founding members of the International Collective of Female Cinematographers.

Make a donation to Ashland.


For inquiries, please contact