We tend to hate on Hollywood studios because of the movie projects they choose to fund (Transformers 4, anyone?). So much of typical Hollywood product tends to be huge, expensive spectacles with little-to-no story, heavy special effects and poor acting. So, we at ScreenCrave have decided to help jump behind the indie film. Below you’ll find some of the best indie trailers of the week, plus unknown projects featured on sites like Kickstarter and Indiegogo that need your help to get made. Check out this week’s picks below.

  • PHILOMENA: Starring Judy Dench and Steve Coogan, Philomena tells the true story of former journalist Martin Sixsmith, who helps a woman search for her lost son. Directed by The Queen‘s Stephen Frears, the film has already won big during its festival circuit run, including a Best Screenplay win at Venice Film Fest. Dench looks rather remarkable here, and it’s almost certain that she’ll nab a Best Actress Oscar nomination, after all, the film features the topic of adoption, there’s also some light comedy and, oh yeah, the Weinstein Company is releasing it during the holidays. Philomena opens Christmas Day.

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  • SAL: It seems like every week we get a new trailer for one of James Franco‘s films. This week there’s Sal, about the life of Rebel Without A Cause star Sal Mineo, after his popularity in Hollywood died down. There were a few other notable things about the 1950s teen idol besides his short acting career; he was one of the first actors to be open about his homosexuality and was also brutally stabbed to death at a young age. Sal stars Val Lauren (Interior. Leather Bar.), who very much resembles Mineo during his Hollywood peak. The film is set to premiere on VOD on October 22, followed by  a limited theater run on November 1st.

  • THE PAW PROJECT: The Paw Project looks to inform people of cat declawing, which is exactly what is sounds like. Hollywood is one of the places where declawing cats is not allowed, but this practice isn’t illegal in the rest of the U.S. The one-hour documentary, directed by veterinarian Dr. Jennifer Conrad, takes us inside the issue, sharing testimony from industry professionals and pet owners alike. The doc also shows the emotional and physical results of a declawed cat, and who profits from this terrible procedure. With The Paw Project, Dr. Conrad hopes to change our nation’s policy on declawing, which is actually illegal in most of the rest of the world, and as mentioned before, Hollywood. For more information on screenings and the film, head over to the official website.

Indie Fundraiser Pick of the Week:

  • I’LL BE HOME SOON: James Everett‘s I’ll Be Home Soon tells the story of Bassam, a French/Algerian living in London who receives an unexpected visit from his family when they suspect him to be a terrorist, and on the verge of making an imminent attack. The short thriller features the tagline, “The key to happiness is freedom and the key to freedom is courage.” Moa Khouas (Rendition, Munich) stars as Bassam, and both he and Everett seem to be very excited about the film’s material. They’re currently trying to raise funds for their production budget on Indiegogo. Head over if you’re interested.

Those are the projects we have for you this week. Be sure to check back every week for our Best Indie Film Trailers of the Week–helping you stay informed about indie cinema.

Which of these projects interests you? Which are you looking forward to? Got one we missed?