Interview with Filmmaker Peter Gardner (ADVENTURES WITH THE CARETAKER)

ADVENTURES WITH THE CARETAKER was the winner of BEST LONG FORM SHORT FILM at the FEEDBACK Animation Festival.

1. What motivated you to make this film?

This is a project that has been around for a few years in different incarnations. I finally decided to produce it on my own and bring it to life

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

Are you ready? 35 years. It was originally a live- action script that wound up at 20th Century Fox with John Candy attached to star. When he suddenly passed, other stars were discussed but it never got made. It was shopped around for a few years and it was always suggested that it be developed as an animated project. That is ultimately what I did. The film is actually the first act of the original screenplay retooled as the pilot episode of a series. The next two episodes are based on act two and three from the original script and have already been written and recorded.

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

Fantasy Adventure

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

We started animation in January of 2020 and it was supposed to be completed in a few months. I don’t need to tell you what happened.

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

I teared up. Honestly. It was seeing complete strangers not only react to it but with intelligence, thoughtfulness and praise. I was shocked. It was affirmation that it worked as well as I hoped, and notice how several of them wanted more “adventures”?

Watch the Audience Feedback Video:

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

Oh, as a kid. I’m a veteran of many Super 8 extravaganzas. Toy dinasours destroying cabins made of Lincoln Logs, creatures made of clay emerging from my kitchen stove in stop motion, a spoof of “Jaws” with my friends in my swimming pool. I made a 1 minute animated film in summer school that won an award at the Kodak Junior Film Festival. Interestingly enough, it was called “Adventures Of A Skydiver”!

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

It’s a tie between “Raiders Of The Lost Ark” and “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory”. Shameless Plug: You can hear me talk about each on a podcast called “Soundtrack Your Life”, a wonderful podcast I’ve been a guest on twice.

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

Well, yours has been wonderful. Communication and notification of screenings as soon as possible so the filmmaker can be sure they are there.

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

It’s addictive! I think FilmFreeway is a wonderful service.

10. What is your favorite meal?

Prime rib. I have it every birthday.

11. What is next for you?

Certainly hoping to get ADVENTURES WITH THE CARETAKER set up as a series or combine the first three episodes as a feature. I have a family Christmas project that features a cast of seniors that Dick Van Dyke and some other beloved actors want to do called MR. CHRISTMAS. I’m also in pre-production on a documentary about movie theaters called IT’S ONLY A MOVIE THEATER.

ADVENTURES WITH THE CARETAKER, 25min., USA
Directed by Peter Gardner
A man has a secret job taking care of creatures like Bigfoot, The Loch Ness Monster, and The Abominable Snowman.

By matthewtoffolo

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

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