Interview with Director Andrea Behring (BAGGAGE)

Andrea Behring’s short film “BAGGAGE” played at the COMEDY FEEDBACK Film Festival in Los Angeles in September 2017.

Matthew Toffolo: What motivated you to make this film?

Andrea Behring: I really wanted to have fun and tell an atypical comedy that poked fun at the norm and also pushed people’s boundaries a bit. Anything I could do in order to direct my own films, I was willing to try, including writing! My dad is also a director, and I’ve always been so inspired by him. I’ve also been challenged to make a name, style, and career to myself, separately from him, on my own merit. I needed to really challenge myself, and this was a challenging short film to make.

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

I first wrote the script in college at Sacramento State it in 2010, then rewrote it in 2013, fundraised through 2015, and then filmed and completed post production in the fall of 2016. So six years in total.

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

BLIND SIDED

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

We had two giant green screens outside a train car we had rented to shoot the subway sequences, and a very small single window of time one day to do it. Our train battery died over 30 times that day and made all kinds of noises, so a 6 hour filming day turned into a 13 hour day. Luckily my actors were total pros about it and managed to jump in and out and keep their composure as needed, and thankfully we did not have to reshoot the day.

Also learning how to produce, it is incredibly demanding!

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

I really felt pride in the fact that people at least wanted to take time to discuss it. Too often at film festivals they hold a 3 minute sugar coated Q&A session that doesn’t really get much discussion going. I sincerely enjoyed the different reactions people had at your festival; it reminded me of my class discussions back in film school.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK of the Short Film:

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

It was a bit of an urban legend to start, as I knew several people who claimed they had a “friend of a friend” who had really had this horrible crazy day in NYC. I would tell the story at gatherings and people would always laugh and feel slightly guilty about it. So I started building on her story and the backstory behind it, and wanted to make sure to give it a complete story arch.

What film have you seen the most in your life?

Clueless (it inspired Baggage!)

You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway, what are you feelings of the new(ish) submission platform from a filmmaker’s perspective?

I liked it and preferred it over without a box, it’s very user friendly. I wish I could search for event more specific festivals, or festivals by region.

What song have you listened to the most times in your life?

To Live and Die in LA by Tupac

What is next for you? A new film?

I have written a 30 min comedy pilot script with my partner Andrew Nicholson called “Picture’s Up” that just won an award in the Hollywood screenplay awards, and am looking forward to building on that and hopefully getting it shot sometime in the next year. I have formed my own production company called &D Productions and will hopefully continue to build that up as well!

In the meantime I am currently also a location manager in Atlanta on the TV show “Dynasty”. This job has allowed me unique access to work with each episode’ directors one on one and study their various techniques. It has also allowed me to have creative input in the extravagant design of the show by helping find and select the locations where we film in Georgia.

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Interviewer Matthew Toffolo is currently the CEO of the WILDsound FEEDBACK Film & Writing Festival. The festival that showcases 10-20 screenplay and story readings performed by professional actors every month. And the FEEDBACK Monthly Festival held in downtown Toronto twice a month, and every other month in Los Angeles. Go to http://www.wildsound.ca for more information and to submit your work to the festival.

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