Interview with Filmmaker Michael Jeanpert (ANOMALY)

ANOMALY was the winner of BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY at the April 2021 WILDsound Film Festival.

1. What motivated you to make this film?

I have been a film buff since I was a child (thanks dad and your awesome VHS collection), I love cinema and as far as I can remember I always wanted to be part of this world. I have often been deeply moved by movies and I always felt the need to “return the favour” by directing my own films. To move people the way I was moved as an audience member is what I’m trying to achieve. I consider myself an entertainer. Telling stories is a beautiful thing and this film is another opportunity to do just that.

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

From the very first idea that popped into my head when I was driving home on a sunny afternoon, to the last day of post-production, 2 and a half years more or less.

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

It’s a love story. An impossible love story.

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

It has to be the lack of money. Making a movie is like cutting a tree, when you have money you can use a chainsaw, but when you don’t have money all you can afford is a kitchen knife. You can cut down the tree with both tools. But using a kitchen knife is WAY MORE painful and time consuming.

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

It was amazing. After all this work, it felt really great to hear what total strangers had to say about it. There’s a saying: making a film is easy, making a good one is very hard and I think we succeeded in telling a good story. People like the movie! This is the greatest reward.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

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

Ideas usually come from the movies I watch. I get inspired a lot by great stories but most of these ideas are often pretty bad, too cliché or impossible to make. But once in a while you think of something that works, that is simple enough, solid and doable. These ideas are the one I’m focusing on, and ANOMALY was one of them.

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

It has to be SE7EN by David Fincher. I must have seen it a hundred times. The movie feels like home, it’s grim but it cheers me up. I watch it to feel good when I’m having a hard time in my life.

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

It’s great. It makes the submission process way much easier.

9. What is your favorite meal?

Couscous. “A food so nice they named it twice”

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

I’m writing a feature film. It’s a lot of work, it takes time and the outcome is uncertain but I love it. I hope I’ll get another chance to sit in the director’s chair in the near future. There’s another saying: by Grabthar’s Hammer, never give up, never surrender.

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