Actress Cara Santana To Make Directorial Debut With Drug Rehab Industry Exposé ‘The Shuffle’

EXCLUSIVE: Actress Cara Santana (Daughter of the Bride) will make her directorial debut with The Shuffle, a documentary on the corruption of the addiction treatment industry, which she’s producing alongside Andrew Renzi’s North of Now.

Developed over the last two years, The Shuffle follows what she says is a $43B-a-year con that’s proliferated in the U.S. through the brokering and trafficking of vulnerable people in recovery by profiting off of their insurance. The film is said to go to the heart of why America has the largest drug epidemic in the Western world — the profit is in the treatment, not the cure.

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“Sober for 20 years, I started noticing the disturbing trend of patient brokering in the rehabilitation industry which was ripe for insurance fraud, but what I uncovered was a massive $43B a year con,” Santana told Deadline. “After developing the story for over 2 years, I found my partner in Andrew Renzi’s North of Now. I was a huge fan of his work and I knew he would be the perfect partner to tell the story with.”

Pre-production commences in August, although some of the film has already been shot; Santana self-financed a portion of the development materials in South Florida last year, which has been used to secure financing.

An actress, activist and director, Santana was most recently seen starring opposite Marcia Gay Harden and Halston Sage in the film Daughter of the Bride from MarVista Entertainment. Previously, she’s been seen in CBS’s The Neighborhood, Starz’s Vida, Fox’s Salem, Netflix’s Santa Clarita Diet and Facebook Watch’s The Real Bros of Simi Valley, along with a number of indies.

In addition to The Shuffle, Santana’s behind-the-camera ambitions include the upcoming feature Steps, which she wrote and is working to develop. Pic is based on true events that depict the intertwined lives of six people struggling with addiction and their journey to recovery over three decades. She’s also producing and developing a dark comedy series that dives into the world of Instagram-based prostitution. The actor-filmmaker is repped by CAA, 11:11 Entertainment, and Hansen, Jacobson, Teller.

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