Interview with director Emily Pietro (COLOR)

Emily Pietro directed  the experimental short film “COLOR”, which was showcased at the FEMALE FEEDBACK Film Festival in December 2016. “COLOR” will be known as the first ever film showcased at the Female Festival as it started off the night. 

Matthew Toffolo: What motivated you to make this film?

Emily Pietro: I was motivated to make this film after I my idea was rejected from one of my film classes. We got to pitch ideas to the class, and then an “anonymous jury” got to decide on 4 films that would be chosen to go into production through the class. After I pitched this idea, I got great feedback from my classmates and many friends were excited to be a part of my film. Four women pitched, and four men pitched. I don’t like to think my professor was sexist, but something inside of me got angry when not a single woman was chosen to produce and direct their project. Instead of getting angry, however, I decided to make this film anyway on my own time with my own crew.

MT: From the idea to the finished product, how long did it take for you to make this film?

EP: From the idea to the finished product, this film took about two years. I was able to imagine, produce and shoot the film in about a month, but then it was placed on the back burner. I got caught up in other jobs and projects, and didn’t revisit this until about a year and a half after. I found an amazing composer, recorded all the foley with a friend of mine, found an incredibly talented sound editor, and a great colorist! All of these people helped me bring this film across the finish line and into the festival circuit.

MT: How would you describe your short film in two words!?

EP: Two words: emotionally interpretive

MT: What was the biggest obstacle you faced in completing this film?

EP: The biggest obstacle was absolutely a lack of connections and time. I just didn’t know enough people to help me in post production at the time, and it was left in the dark for so long.

MT: What were your initial reactions when watching the Toronto audience talking about your film in the feedback video?

EP: My initial reactions were “WOW!” I was so excited and pleased to hear everyone’s thoughts and how my film was perceived through different eyes. This is something I’ve never experienced with any of my films. So much of my feedback has been through friends and family, (which can be biased sometimes haha) so I was incredibly thankful, humbled and felt more proud of my work than I had been before.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK of the Short Film:

MT: How did you come up with the idea for this short film?

EP: I was inspired by this quote from an anonymous person: “Art isn’t meant to be beautiful, it’s meant to make you feel something” This really resonated with me because so often I get caught up in the idea that films are supposed to be perfect, and beautiful all the time, when this really isn’t the case. If there isn’t soul and emotion in your art, it won’t resonate with an audience. This was my cinematic interpretation of the quote that has developed in to different meanings.

MT: What film have you seen the most in your life?

EP: The Princess Bride

MT: What is next for you? A new film?

EP: What’s next? Hopefully a new film! I am in the process of writing a short film and a feature, but most of my time has been dedicated to working as a set decorator (and occasionally a production designer) to earn money, meet other creative people, and develop my ideas!

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Interviewer Matthew Toffolo is currently the CEO of the WILDsound FEEDBACK Film & Writing Festival. The festival that showcases 20-50 screenplay and story readings performed by professional actors every month. And the FEEDBACK Monthly Festival held in downtown Toronto, and Los Angeles at least 2 times a month. Go to www.wildsound.ca for more information and to submit your work to the festival.

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