Second Chance
Written and Directed by Suet Lai

Suet's short is about a postal worker and a janitor in the dead letter office.

Here, I, as Gennie the postal worker, am going through the dead letters. Some might be researched to find a final destination; others go to the shredder. Many are addressed to Second Chance, Nebraska, with no other information, no return address to be seen on the envelope. I'm the one who decides the destiny of these missives. It's a lonely job, but it's got to be done.


So involved with my sorting, I don't notice
cameraman and crewing busily dressing the set.

It's a long hallway, and at every turn, the guy in the blue t-shirt, cameraman Jared Ramirez,

After sorting, I haul the bag of aimless epistles down to the shredder for the next day's graffiti. I then say goodnight to Marcus, the janitor, gingerly avoiding the wet spots on the newly mopped floor,


Hop scotching across Marcus' spotless floor.

And made it across without incident --
just "See ya tomorrow."

Marcus has another life, another mission, another, if you will, preoccupation. He sorts again through the letters, opening and reading them; the stories of loss, want, need, despair, frustration and anger. To those for which he can research an address and who need monetary support, he mails them back some cash from his own pocket.

This year-long Santa makes a little dent in the sorrows of those who are inspired by the name of the town, Second Chance, and hope to find some relief.


Marcus, played by Tim Connolly, commits a federal
offence by, unauthorized, reading mail not addressed to him.

Crew's eye view of Marcus' crime of benevolence.

I come back to work the next day and find Marcus just finishing up. "Still here?" He replies, "It's taking me a little longer these days to get things done," a commentary on the growing distress in this country. But he has a twinkle in his eye and a curl to the corners of his mouth.

Such a poignant little story. So succinct, so O'Henry-ish. I'm glad I got the opportunity to work with Suet on this, one of her first projects. Hope more will be in her, and my, future.

Frank Perkins, Jeanette Miller, Suet Lai (front),
Shane Parton (behind, Paola Cortez

Ginnie - Bonnie Steiger
Marcus - Tim Connolly

Director/writer: Suet Lai
Instructor - Gabriel Diamond
Assistant Director and
still photographer - Shane Parton
Camera - Jared Ramirez
Sound - Marcel Rivera
Gaffer - Paola Cortez
Script Supervisor/Continuity - Jeanette Miller
Production Assistant - Frank Perkins