Interview with Filmmaker Emma Keehan (OUROBOROS)

OUROBOROS was the winner of BEST FILM at the January 2020 Experimental Film Festival in Toronto.

Matthew Toffolo: What motivated you to make this film?

This film was created for a class at my Uni, where I was voted to be director. We found the idea by opening a big book of poetry and each crew member randomly selecting a sentence from a poem. We then each wrote a script, editing and mashing together until we finalized on “Ouroboros.”

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

We had a limited of time to make this film, just one semester! So, from conception to completion, we had about 3 months.

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

Ooof, that’s a tough one because I have a hard time explaining it to people with unlimited words. 2 words, I’d say, “pursued acceptance”?

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

Working on the film was smooth sailing, but I’d say it was trying balance a full student’s workload: homework, classes, and then most of us worked, so trying to get work done on this film while not falling behind on everything else was a chore and a half.

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

I LOVED everyone’s interpretations of the meaning behind the film. There really isn’t one correct answer as we really did try to leave it up to the audience to figure out what it meant to THEM. I truly got a lot of joy from hearing people talk about the film. As an artist, it’s really hard to see the good in your work, so to hear it from other people really helps remind us that what we’re doing is enjoyed by other people.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

7. What film have you seen the most in your life?

Oh my gosh! I am the queen of re-watching amongst my friends, I can’t even count how many times I’ve watched The Office but, if I really sat down and thought about what film I’ve watched over and over again, it’d probably be…Surf’s Up. Although, Gladiator and LoTR get high on the list too.

8. You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway, what are you feelings of the submission platform from a filmmaker’s perspective?

Very easy to use/navigate.

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

Probably “All star” by Smash Mouth. I had the CD when I was little and could NOT stop listening to it.

10. What is next for you? A new film?

I am currently working on a script. I want to see more folklore films out there, specifically Celtic, or things like that, so I’m taking folklore stories and turning them into scripts!


By matthewtoffolo

Filmmaker and sports fan. CEO of the WILDsound Film and Writing Festival


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