Interview with Filmmaker Jason Sheedy (FENESTRA)

FENESTRA was the winner of BEST SHORT FILM at the February 2021 FANTASY/SCI-FI Film Festival.

What motivated you to make this film?

I’ve been focusing on writing for the past few years and really wanted to jump back into making shorts so at its core this film was just sort of a fun excuse to get together with some friends and create something. The idea came about one morning while my wife and I were eating breakfast, staring out our living room window having one of our typical morning conversations, “what would you do right now if the zombie apocalypse started?” or “what would Boone (our dog) sound like if she could talk?” That morning’s conversation just happened to be “what would happen if we were invaded by aliens right now?” and it got the wheels turning for this short.

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

From script to final edit, this film was about a three week process editing after work at night and on weekends.

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

Humanity Lost. Deep, right? Probably some kind of double-entendre going on there. Maybe. Honestly I spent the longest time trying to think about how I would answer this haha but ultimately that’s where I ended up. Flawless transition to me talking about the underlying message. Given the political and societal climate of the past year, I think it’s fair to say it’s been a bit of a bumpy ride for humanity. And I think a lot of this film’s tone comes from that sense of uncertainty accompanying it all.

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

I would say the biggest obstacle were the visual effects. I’m an editor by trade and have always dabbled in really basic effects work but wanted to challenge myself to step that up a bit. It was a fun struggle.

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

I was just smiling the whole time – it’s rare you get such a candid look presented to you in this way and it’s really neat to see how your film might affect people differently.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

6. When did you first realize that you wanted to make movies?

I have a very vivid memory of laying on my living room floor as a kid and watching Raiders of The Lost Ark on VHS. I remember having trouble sleeping that night, not because of ol’ melty face, but because my head was spinning with (probably terrible) story ideas.

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

The film that first jumped out in my memory was John Carpenter’s The Thing. To me it’s the perfect sci-fi horror film.

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

I really love it. It’s just an easy process and it’s great to be able to browse all of the various festivals and opportunities to showcase your work.

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

Hmmm. It’s either “21st Century (Digital Boy)” by Bad Religion or “All Over The World” by Electric Light Orchestra. Two super similar bands, right?

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

My friends and I shot another short just before the holidays that I’m close to finishing up post on now. It’s a sci-fi horror piece with some Lovecraftian vibes that we’re looking forward to releasing soon!


By matthewtoffolo

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

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