Interview with Filmmaker Greg Moran (CULICIDAE)

CULICIDAE, 7min., Australia, Drama
Directed by Greg Moran
A late night intrusion leads to a life and death struggle.

Get to the filmmaker:

What motivated you to make this film?

I’ve been a high-level quadriplegic since I was 15 as a result of a rugby accident. I have had many late night, frustrating battles with mosquitoes, and I thought it would be a good concept for a short film as it is high stakes, is a universal subject matter and a window into a world that not many people get to see.

I was also hoping that it would be relatable and give people greater insight into some of the challenges faced by such a disability.

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

I had the general idea for a couple of years before filming but had not got around to making it. When another short film I was making suddenly got shut down and put on hold when the covid pandemic hit Australia I decided to make this instead because we could shoot it will a minimal crew and still adhere to the Covid restrictions (we bent the rules a little bit). We initially filmed for two days, but when I looked at the rushes, I wasn’t happy with the camera angles and I wanted to simplify it more. So we came back and re-shot it in one day. The entire film is done in one continuous take. On the first two days we did 42 takes mostly due to technical difficulties but none of them ended up being used. The second time we shot it we did about 5 takes.

Then it took another couple of months to do the animation, the sound design, colour grade and compose the music as nobody was able to be working on it full time.

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

Simple & impactful.

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

Directing, producing and acting all at the same time was quite challenging at times particularly since I was confined to the bed during the filming and I didn’t initially have a convenient monitor setup to view the takes. Hence the fact that we had to reshoot it.

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

I was really pleased and pleasantly surprised by the audience reactions. It’s great to get people’s feedback, particularly complete strangers, and to see how your intentions for the film came across to an audience. It’s also a relief to get positive feedback from strangers as I’m too close to it to objectively judge it myself any more.

Watch the Audience Feedback Video:

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

When I left university after majoring in English, and doing some short story writing in the early 1990s I naturally transitioned into short filmmaking. I had always been a big fan of films growing up and was heavily influenced by Joseph Campbell and his philosophies during my “search for meaning” journey after I became a quadriplegic and was trying to make sense of the world.

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

Probably Chinatown.

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

Nothing that I can think of at the moment.

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

Great experience, very simple and easy to use.

10. What is your favorite meal?

Any Thai food.

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

Next year, I will be starting my 2 year Masters in Producing at the Australian film television and radio school in Sydney (AFTRS). I have a new short film ca White Lies starting on the film Festival circuit, and another short film and a couple of features that I would like to produce and direct if I can raise the funding for them. But the masters will take up the majority of my time for the next couple of years and there will be various projects associated with that.


By matthewtoffolo

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

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