This Family Raised $32K to End Child Hunger By Recreating Famous Movie Scenes With Toddlers

From Braveheart to Home Alone: Quarantine Edition, a 4- and 1-year-old from Connecticut have been channeling Hollywood to give back and spread cheer during the pandemic.

madison presser
Photo: Dan Presser

All over the country, families have been figuring out their own unique ways of making the best of a challenging year. In an effort to keep their spirits up and their kids entertained during "days that felt 72 hours long," the Presser family from Connecticut began recreating some of the most iconic movie scenes—from A League of Their Own to Ace Ventura and Braveheart—casting 4-year-old Madison and 1-year-old Barton in the lead roles.

"We were limited to props and costumes we had laying around the house because we were basically locked down and couldn’t go to stores and borrow stuff from friends because we weren’t seeing anyone," explains Dan Presser.

But their ingenuity and flexibility paid off, and soon, they realized the clips could also serve to raise money for families in need.

Presser and his wife Beth noticed long lines at food banks and grocery stores and how some children out of school didn’t have meals. "We try to teach our daughter about giving back," he shares. "And we saw Mark Cuban, Alex Rodriguez, and Leo DiCaprio raise all that money to fight hunger with the All In Challenge, and it gave us the idea to try to help as much as we could. Obviously people aren't going to pay $20K to sit courtside at a game with us, but maybe they’ll pay $50 to watch our kids recreate some scenes from their favorite movies."

The family decided to partner with Feeding America, a domestic hunger relief organization that manages 200 food banks, and since posting their first movie scene back in the spring, they've created 43 clips and raised over $32K for Feeding America by attaching a link to the videos, Presser says.

That said, chances are at least one of your all-time favorites is represented in the Pressers' collection of "films," shared on their Quarantine 2020 Productions YouTube channel and Presser's Instagram account.

In Forrest Gump, Madison repeats the famous line, "Life is like a box of chocolates—you never know what you're going to get" and wears "leg braces" recreated with paper towel tubes.

In a Back to the Future 2 scene, the kids ride a homemade Hoverboard (made from cardboard, obviously).

Madison also channeled Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman, trying on all the dresses and then declares a saleswoman's rude behavior "a big mistake, big, huge!"

And fans of John Hughes will get a kick out of a Ferris Bueller's Day Off scene, in which Madison does her best Cameron, kicking her toy car off the porch, and a "quarantine edition" of Home Alone.

Now, the family has taken their project to the next level by "casting" friends who live all over the country. "We have supporting casts in these movies from Iowa, Nebraska, North Carolina, New York, NYC, and Washington, D.C., which is fun and very 2020," explains Presser. "They just shoot their lines at their house with their kids and send them to me, and I splice them in. The kids think they're movie stars—it's really cute."

Looks like production isn't slowing down anytime soon for the Pressers. After all, there's really no better way to stay safer at home than by having fun and entertaining others—all for a good cause.

Was this page helpful?
Related Articles