Interview with Filmmaker  Justin Odell Stuckey (BOUNDARY)

BOUNDARY was the winner of BEST PERFORMANCES at the November 2021 BLACK Feedback Film Festival.

1. What motivated you to make this film?

I wanted to make something that was minimalist in tone and visual but layered in meaning and theme. I wrote it in the thick of the pandemic which was a time that was very stripped down for a lot of folks but impactful and layered in terms of what it forced us to think about to keep some sort of normalcy. Not that this film is about the pandemic, but I think it’s emotions of isolation mirror this time period.

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

I wrote the script across a few weeks, hiring crew + casting + scouting took 2 weeks, and then editing/post audio mixing was a 3 month process. So 4-5 months.

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

Suspenseful, claustrophobic

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

Lack of experience for sure. I got in my own head a lot in the beginning because we as humans naturally fear the things we haven’t done yet. Since this was my first time making a film and even being on a set, I struggled a lot during production with having the confidence to go with my gut. Of course I had to fight through that and I’m glad I did, but it’s tough communicating your vision and direction when almost everyone else on set probably had more experience than I did

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

I struggled even wanting to release this film mostly because it was my first one and I was worried it was too subtle or vague for people to understand it. So when I watched the reactions and everyone’s feedback was so profound and gathered the mood I wanted people to feel when watching it – it gave me excitement and motivation to keep going and improving.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

6. When did you realize that you wanted to make films?

I first thought seriously about it around age 11 or 12 because my dad had these old Spike Lee books where he’d breakdown step by step how he made each of his early independent films. I started reading all of them but then gave up on the idea mostly due to lack of friends who were interested in the same thing as well as the belief that you had to be in LA or NYC to make that happen. Then shortly after college, I realized the itch to make things was coming back.

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

Goodfellas

8. What other elements of the festival experience can we and other festivals implement to satisfy you and help you further your filmmaking career?

This is probably the obvious answer but the more opportunities there are to get films sold or at least sponsored, I think the more fruitful festivals are in helping advance filmmakers’ careers and providing them the funds/support for the next project.

9. You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway. How has your experiences been working on the festival platform site?

This is my first time submitting anything through FilmFreeway and it couldn’t have been more seamless. It’s such a simple way to discover festivals that are the right fit for your work and it’s a great way of having all selections/awards organized.

10. What is your favorite meal?

Chicken and shrimp carbonara!

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

I typically don’t like talking about upcoming plans until they’re already complete…BUT yes! I am in pre-production process for my follow up short film – untitled at the moment.

By matthewtoffolo

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

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