Interview with Filmmaker Victoria Negri (2 WEEKS)

2 WEEKS played to rave reviews at the January 2021 LGBTQ+ film festival in January 2021.

Site: http://victorianegri.com/

1. What motivated you to make this film?

Margarita first told me about her idea for her film while we were touring on a short film she acted in of mine called “Paralysis”. I am always moved when people have the bravery to make films that tackle personal subject matter, and Marz’s gumption to boldly investigate her own journey within asexuality spoke to me.

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

The short went through multiple phases. We shot the film and worked on a few cuts over about a year, and then shot did a pickup shoot to fine tune some of the storytelling. I always stress to my collaborators that the most important thing is to make a film that you’re proud of because at the end of the day, that’s what you have to live with. We took our time with this project, and I’m glad we did.

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

Dreamy. Self-discovery.

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

How much exposition an audience needs in the storytelling. Marz and I set out to make this film as dream-like as possible, where Tanya, her character, moves in and out of her internal and external worlds seamlessly. Sometimes audiences couldn’t follow the thread of what was happening, so it was a challenge to ground viewers in Tanya’s experience.

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

First of all, it’s so awesome that you do this! It’s an honor to hear reactions. I was so pleased hearing the specific feedback, specifically Tanya’s experience battling with sex as a huge part of society today and how isolating the experience is — lots of folks talked about the nightmare scene in the bar, which was incredibly important to the film thematically, so I’m thrilled it landed.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

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

Margarita gets all the credit with that! I added a lot of emphasis on pushing Tanya’s interior world to the exterior along with the rest of teh creative team, namely our DP Jesse Sanchez-Strauss and editor/producer Stacey Maltin.

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

Definitely the Lord of the Rings trilogy. I was a massive nerd in high school.

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

All hail FilmFreeway.

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

Impossible to answer. I can only say right now and throughout most of the pandemic I have John Maus’ song “Hey Moon” on repeat.

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

I’m in development of my second feature ULTRA, to shoot this year, and am in post on a documentary I shot this fall about a group of runners who run a day plus relay race in Brooklyn, NY during the pandemic.

Interview with Filmmaker Evgenia Taneva (10 SECONDS)

10 SECONDS was the winner of BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY at the January 2021 Female Directors Festival.

1. What motivated you to make this film?

My motivation behind every project I work on is the message that I want to present. Cinema has this great power, both to preserve history and to be a conduit between reality and fiction of feelings, emotions and stories. When I create, usually the driven source is my personal experiences or thoughts. Through the story of the character I try to convey a different point of view on themes that excite me such as the subconscious mind and the changes in the character’s personality. The sensory and emotional world of a person is a depth that I explore with great interest in my work. It somehow emerges during the creative process.

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

It took us more than a year to realize this film. We were searching for different ways to fund the project. We participate in different forums, pitching sessions and competitions and for each there were different rules which we had to comply with. The main thing we had to keep untouched is the message behind the film “10 seconds”. The real painful battles are in ourselves and the answers also.

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

inner battles

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

The biggest obstacle standing between the vision and the created film has always been money, and that was no different in our case. The whole team worked on the project entirely of goodwill and trust in the idea. They gave their time, energy, sleep and mostly their talent for the realization of the film, for which I am so grateful. Good ideas are nothing if they are not created into realities. Everyone can have an idea, but the hard work is to keep it until you find trustworthy people with whom to make it happen. However, we still had to find ways to get the equipment that is needed to build this new world of the film. The search was long and some times even discourageable. Thankfully, the opportunity came. We were one of the three screenplays selected in 355 FILM AWARDS – a competition created by Art foundation “Stoyan Kambarev” in Bulgaria. They gave us equipment in order to shoot the film. The rules were to finalize it in five days – shoot, edit, make the sound design and compose the music for that short of time. That was another provocative obstacle that we had to overcome. But it all worth it.

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

I was thrilled to hear their thoughts and the way the film made them felt. The audience feedback gave me better understanding about what impact the film has on the viewer. They had been with the main character though her inner journey and were able to connect with her – that was our main goal and I am happy that “10 seconds” received such reactions.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

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

When the co-writer – Victor Paskov, suggested a story that looks into the emotional, subconscious world of a human and to explore the boxing metaphor connected to the inner struggles of a person – I was so capture with this idea. That is how all started.

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

I believe Jojo Rabbit is the movie I watched almost every day for quite a long time. For me, this movie is an honest, emotional and moving masterpiece.

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

The platform really helps the filmmaker to find festivals all around the world. It creates a fast and easy connection between the artist and the festivals and in such a way gives more opportunities for the movies to reach different and wider audiences.

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

That is a really hard question to answer. Тhere is such a large and varied palette of valuable music that just one song will be difficult to separate.

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

Now I am working with a colleague of mine – Stan Stefanov on a script for my diploma film. I won’t tell more, because hopefully the audience will have the chance to see it. I’m just going to reveal a bite. This time you will see something very different from “10 seconds” and my other movies. The genre we work in is comedy. I always try to provoke myself and decided that the comedy genre is a field I want to explore.

Interview with Filmmaker Carolina Neves (ALVORADA)

ALVORADA was the winner of BEST FILM at the January 2021 LGBTQ+ Film Festival.

1. What motivated you to make this film?

My motivation came from my personal experience when I was photographing music events of the Metal genre for web magazines. Although I had a connection with this subculture during my teen years, the discrimination in this environment is loud and clear. There were times when radical homophobic speeches by some members culminated in severed ties with LGBTQ+ members of the same circle.

The film’s main objective is to denounce the intolerance imposed on certain social groups. The theme’s exposure seeks a reaction from the audience, in order to cultivate reflection and debate about discrimination which is still so real in today’s society. It’s intended that the audience, when confronted with this important issue, gains a new type of awareness and change in mentality.

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

Alvorada’s concept was on my mind for a long time and I decided it should come to life as my master’s degree final project. It took approximately 9 months to complete, from writing the script to the last editing details, as the deadline was before the end of the school year.

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

Stand tall.

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

A film depends a lot on teamwork as interpersonal relationships and respect for others influence the quality of the film. The director’s role is decisive, to direct all team members to the idea that exists in their mind in order to transform it into a product. The fact that it is an academic project meant that, in an initial phase, the project was viewed less seriously than intended which was one of the greatest challenges I faced as a first-time filmmaker. Nevertheless, communicating the concept with maximum clarity and assertiveness guaranteed the needed credibility and gained the participants’ trust.

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

I felt this wave of joy and understanding! The audience’s feedback was very professional and it’s amazing how they understood the film so well from just one session, it means that its’ message gets through. They also praised the concept, creativity and quality of the project which made us very happy for this recognition. And the music! We wrote and produced the Black Metal song ourselves, it’s great that it’s being talked about and leaves people curious about what’s gonna happen next.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

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

Our society’s full of stereotypes that encourage hatred. I wanted to work on these issues by demonstrating how worrying they still are today. Witnessing them happening in my own friend circle increased my curiosity to better understand all their dimensions and to carry out theoretical and scientific research that would allow a greater knowledge for a civic intervention through fiction.

The idea for the film was to have the opposite worlds of intolerance and social inclusion experienced by a single character. Intolerance would be evidenced by the character’s forced insertion in a hostile environment, while their nature would take them to a different environment of acceptance and inclusion. From the character’s experience, it was possible to convey a sense of their world and address the themes of intolerance and self-acceptance.

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

Though question! I have watched “Donnie Darko” a lot as it feels like it was catered to my tastes in almost every aspect, from the 80’s post-punk soundtrack to the satiric religious representation through characters. The film’s mainly characterised by its brutal criticism of social conformism and the lack of critical spirit, the main moral lesson being the importance of critical analysis capability in the face of what life presents us, alerting to the dangers of social conformism that translates into a general anesthesia of most of its individuals towards the claim of their civic and humanistic duties. Donnie stands out for his unique way of being, whether one can interpret his personality as an anti-hero who saved the world or as a troubled boy in a strange situation.

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

The platform presents endless options for film submissions. It can be a bit overwhelming at first but, knowing your film and with plenty of research, filmmakers can find good festival matches for their own pieces of work. It’s also good that you can keep track of your project’s submissions and updates in a single place.

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

Maybe not “the most times in my life” but these past two months I’ve been constantly listening to “Say Less” by the band Nothing, it’s one of their heavier songs from the new album. It conveys a gloomy feeling of uncertainty and isolation, that I’m sure we can all relate to during these strange times, but also the need of silence when life feels chaotic. Definitely worth a listen!

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

Yes, I’m already working on the script for the next one. I have it all outlined but the project’s in need of funding in order to have the best quality.

Interview with Producer/Writer/Actor Jeremy Glazer (ON THE RIDE)

ON THE RIDE – Winner of Best CINEMATOGRAPHY at the January 2021 LGBTQ+ Film Festival.
http://www.ontheridefilm.com
Facebook: @ontheridefilm
Instagram: @ontheridefilm
Twitter: @ontheridefilm

1. What motivated you to make this film?

As an actor for the past 20 years, I wanted to tell my own story. I was ready to learn the process of filmmaking from A-Z and take on writing and producing in order to move people not only with my acting, but my creative ideas, words and storytelling. Basically, create my own film school, but just jumping right in and making a film. As an actor, you are at the whim of seeing if you fit into someone else’s story, but this time I wanted to take my power back and write and create for myself. Challenge myself in many ways. Also, I wanted find my crew and the people I admire to collaborate with when it comes to making films. I wanted to learn from them and see their processes. It’s fascinating to see how each position on a crew has their own way of operating and seeing how their work folds into bringing the film together and to life. I am excited to work with them all again.

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

I started writing it around October of 2018 and we locked picture in August of 2019, so just over a year.

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

Heartwarmingly heartbreaking.

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

I’d say getting all of the exterior biking, with stunts all shot in one day. Many locations, tight schedule and many types of cameras and rigging, but we made it all work!

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

Gratification. To hear how each element they touched on, whether it be the storytelling, the performances or their favorite line, I felt like they got what I wanted to create. I appreciate how positive they all were too.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

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

SPOILER ALERT: I wanted to make my own film for a while and I knew I wanted to emotionally draw people in and move them, but I didn’t know what exact story I wanted to tell yet. I was on Facebook one day, and I saw someone post a news clip about a man who rode his bike over 1,400 miles to meet the man who now obtains his daughter’s heart. The bike rider’s daughter died who in an accident at a young age, donated her organs so others could continue their lives. It moved me so much, that I thought, I can take what moved me with this story and make it my own.

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

Back to the Future

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

I like it. It is very helpful and easy to use.

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

“Higher Love” by Kygo and Whitney Houston

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

As a filmmaker, I am currently in the re-write phase of a feature film and looking to get it in pre-production later this year. As an actor, I have a couple of roles on television that will air later this year, I’m in TikTok’s first scripted series called Hidden Canyons (@1minutegaysoap) and also currently in a film called “Rust Creek” (also directed by “On the Ride” director, Jen McGowan), that was recently in the Top 10 on Netflix!

Interview with Actor/Writer/Producer Margarita Zhitnikova (2 WEEKS)

2 WEEKS played to rave reviews at the January 2021 LGBTQ+ Film Festival.

1. What motivated you to make this film?

Margarita Zhitnikova: Understanding that I’m asexual was a very scary experience for me. I didn’t want it to be true because I was afraid it meant I’d never be good enough for society as we live in an incredibly sex-driven world. In my opinion, one way to remedy that is to spread awareness and representation. We are so much more than who we fuck, how often we fuck and how “sexy” we are.

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

MZ: I think it actually took us about 2 years! I really thought it would be done much faster but after completing the film (color, sound, everything!) we had to do a pick-up shoot and start post all over again.

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

MZ: surreal, honest

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

MZ: I underestimated just how little people knew about asexuality. When we first shot the film, the script was less on the nose. There was less dialogue about what asexuality is and my character never said “asexuality” because she still didn’t have the words for it – much like I didn’t when I started realizing my sexual attraction to others would never arrive. I didn’t want to make another coming-out story but this felt different since I’ve never seen one on this topic. I’m really happy with how the film is now with the additional footage though. It also completely changed the structure of the film. The dinner scene at the top used to close it out!

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

MZ: I cried. I had goosebumps. I hugged my screen and texted the link to our team. I can’t thank you enough!

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

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

MZ: I was really inspired by Get Out and Mother. I loved the way those films to externalize the horror that the characters are constantly facing on the inside. I knew I wanted to use similar elements to share what it feels like to have no control over how you are perceived by those around you.

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

MZ: Really putting me on the spot!!!! I don’t rewatch films much anymore in general because there is soooo much content and I want to see it all but I used to watch Harry Potter films ALL THE TIME. They were my escape. It’s a fucking shame that JK Rowling has turned to be transphobic.

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

MZ: Wellll it’s a whole lot better than withoutabox was! I could barely figure that one out. FilmFreeway is much more user friendly, however, it can still be difficult to tell which festivals are legitimate. One festival I attended that was absolutely horrible to the point where it was featured in a prominent publication as one of the scammiest festivals still has great ratings and all of the negative reviews are hard to find on FilmFreeway. Be careful filmmakers, do your research! Generally, if you reach out to someone that’s had a project at a festival to ask their experience, they’ll give you a few minutes of their time.

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

MZ: Piece of Me by Triple Threat and a lot of Blue Oyster Cult and Thin Lizzy songs as well.

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

MZ: Oh so many things! Triple Threat, where I play the role of Maggie – an unstoppable self-starter who creates a musical with her best friend – is set to be released this year. I got to make it with my best friend and production company partner Stacey Maltin who co-wrote and directed it as well. My short film Appetite (trailer) starring Jeffrey Weber, Jordan Bayne, Sibyl Santiago and myself, directed by Stacey Maltin is about to start it’s festival run. Jeffrey and I co-wrote Zasha, a vegan horror short, which has been garnering nominations at awesome festivals, that we are now turning into a feature-length. My award winning short film JONES (trailer) is finishing off its festival run. And I recently began virtually studying at Lesly Kahn’s studio to continue growing as an actor. Also shouting out that director Victoria Negri will soon be shooting her 2nd feature film ULTRA! You can catch her first film GoldStar on most streaming platforms. All of our team members are doing cool things. If you want to keep up with us, please follow on the socials and subscribe to the Besties Make Movies biweekly newsletter (http://eepurl.com/gvpk0r)!

Instagram (production company) @bestiesmakemovies (actor/writer/prodcuer) @marzapproved (director) @victorianegri (producer/editor) @staceymaltin (actor) @analine_ignacio (producer) @jschwartz00 (producer) @scarrrie (cinematographer) @j.coyote (costume designer) @madeincorreia
Twitter (production company) @bestiesmovies (actor/writer/producer) @marzapproved (director) @goldstarfilm (producer/editor) @staceymaltin (producer) @JSchwartz00 (producer) @carrie_radigan
Facebook (production company) @bestiesmakemovies (actor/writer/producer) @mzhitnikova (producer/editor) @staceymaltin
Vimeo (production company) @bestiesmakemovies (actor/writer/producer) @margaritaz (director) @victorianegri (producer/editor) @staceymaltin
Youtube youtube.com/channel/UCh-8V5vlrulFTj_SWGGygmw

Interview with Filmmaker Alejandro Fanzago (THE GRIN OF EVIL)

THE GRIN OF EVIL was awarded BEST FILM at the January 2021 FAN FICTION Festival.

1. What motivated you to make this film?

I’ve been cosplaying the Joker for several years now and the idea of taking it to the next level was always there. What would it be like watching the most faithful comic adaptation of the character aside from the movies? One true to the character we all love from the comics. So that was the trigger. It’s not about watching a new version but to see him coming out of a comic page to the big screen.

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

It took us almost two years to get it done. Making the practical props and devices such as the Jack-in-the-box and the ‘Grin of Evil’ sign was the longest part. And then the post-production process was a challenge too. What a journey!

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

No-Joke

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

Well, definitely the biggest was the whole post-production process. We spent most of the time trying to animate the background through a green screen because something we couldn’t quite solve on set was the reason the film was delayed. And I would really like to thank Cheby (Sebastián Contreras) who helped us finishing it!

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

I’m thrilled! It’s amazing to see how they feel about it because it’s exactly what we intended. It’s a great achievement and it sure encourage us to keep on creating. Thank you all!

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

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

Frankly, creating a Joker series was something I’d always envisioned. But in order to make it happen, we needed a teaser trailer first to show the audience what we had in mind. I knew it had to be something quite different, something new. Something intriguing too, by showing without really showing too much. So the idea of a Joker atmosphere came up and we knew that was it.

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

I would say Star Wars and of course all the Batman films.

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

I think it’s a fantastic tool! It helps us sharing our work worldwide plus it’s easy to use. I would definitely recommend it!

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

Well I don’t really know if there’s only one song. I mean I can listen to some classical music songs, maybe some jazz or even Eminem. I guess it depends on what I’m creating at the moment!

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

Yes, we have some more projects up our sleeve. Some of them are Joker related, and some others are completely original ideas. We are very excited about them and hope to be able to make them and share them with you all soon!

Interview with Screenwriter Malathi Vulupala (FORGOTTEN VOICE(S))

1. What is your screenplay about?

It is about a girl who was betrayed by her soulmate and what she does to come out of that depression even though it takes up good part of her life and how she puts her life together.

2. What genres does your screenplay fall under?

Drama

3. Why should this screenplay be made into a movie?

This accounts the state of a girl when betrayed by her lover and shows how she puts her life together.

4. How would you describe this script in two words?

focus and persistence

5. What movie have you seen the most times in your life?

all movies just once

6. How long have you been working on this screenplay?

2 years

7. How many stories have you written?

This is the first one. One more is complete and working on third

8. What is your favorite song? (Or, what song have you listened to the most times in your life?)

Mostly with classical music and with good beats.

9. What obstacles did you face to finish this screenplay?

Giving a reasonable occupation for the lead role while finishing as she is very much career oriented as a student.

10. Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

Costume designing and editing

11. You entered your screenplay via FilmFreeway. What has been your experiences working with the submission platform site?

It was good and easy to submit.

12. What influenced you to enter the festival? What were your feelings on the initial feedback you received?

This being my first screenplay, my mentor asked me to get feedback so that I can improve myself. I was able to get good feedback which helped in completing the screenplay

Watch the Screenplay Reading:

A young innocent girl trusts her first love too much and pays the ultimate price when he betrays her, and must decide if she can move forward and trust in love again.

CAST LIST:
Narrator: Allison Kampf
Adithya: Shawn Devlin
Padmini: Kyana Teresa

Interview with Writer/Producer Steven G. Farrell (Mersey Boys: A Letter from Al Moran)

Mersey Boys: A Letter from Al Moran played to rave reviews at the January 2021 FAN FICTION Festival.

1. What motivated you to make this film?

The film is based upon my self-published novel, “Mersey Boys.” I published the novel in 2013 under my own Celtic-Badgers Publishers imprint. I published earlier versions: The Scousers in 1995 and Liverpool Roared in 2010.

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

It has taken me thirty years on this project. I started working on the first draft of the novel in 1989. Besides the three versions of the novel, I have also written a stage play and a screenplay based upon the storyline. A stage reading was held at Greenville Technical College during the winter of 2016. The screenplay was rewritten by two other writers before the final script we used in the film was written by Paddy Murphy in 2017.

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

Liverpool dream!

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

The biggest obstacle was finding somebody with a full production company who shared my dream of making a picture based upon my book. Paddy Murphy of Celtic Badger Media Films-Ireland was that person. We only met online because we both shared the same Celtic Badger label. Emails led to a conversation via computer. Finally, I flew over to Ireland to film in October of 2017.

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

I was so delighted I started to cry. Gently, not hysterically. I viewed the movie with an audience of around seventy people in April of 2019. It was the official world premiere for Mersey Boys: A Letter From Al Moran. Daniel Hartwell, promoter of The Beatles on the Beach International Festival, invited me to screen the film inside of the Beautiful Crest Theater in Delray, Florida. Afterwards I received a bear hug from Tony Bramwell, the producer of several of the Beatles’ songs.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

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

I visited Liverpool, England, in March of 1989, and I took a bus tour of the Beatles’ Liverpool made me want to project myself into their story.

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

I have watched A Hard Day’s Night fifty times since I saw it at the Orpheum Theater in my home town of Kenosha, Wisconsin when it was released in 1964.

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

I think this platform is outstanding. It is a true asset to the filmmaker.

9) What are your plans? Another film?

I would like to see “Mersey Boys” as a feature-length film. It is my dream to shoot in Liverpool, England, in places connected with the Beatles. It is my desire to get in as many survivors of that time period as possible-members of the old Mersey Beat bands-to be in the film. It would be great to have Paul McCartney play the part of a professor at the Liverpool Art College, where John Lennon attended classes. I’d love to have Ringo Starr play a worker on the famous Liverpool ferry boat. I want to produce to movie as an open love letter to the city of the Liverpool, the city’s wonderful musical tradition and the Beatles!

10) What song have you listened to the most times in your life?

That’s easy: In My Life BY John Lennon and the Beatles.

Interview with Writer/Producer/Actor Ashley Sutton (THE NEW OLD FASHIONED)

THE NEW OLD FASHIONED played to rave reviews at the January 2020 Female Filmmakers Festival.

1. What motivated you to make this film?

Being a huge fan of film, I’ve always noticed there are certain female stories that aren’t discussed on camera. Often these stories are also things we look down on in society. I have seen a lot of female friends struggle with pregnancy in many different ways. I have seen a lot of friends struggle with not finding a mate. I want all women to know that our stories and problems are important. Hopefully this will help soften the stigma around this issue.

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

I had this idea years ago and wrote a very rough version of it. After talking to various women I admired, I wanted to look at the story differently. Brigid came on board and we shaped “The New Old Fashioned” into what you are seeing today.

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

Self Empowerment

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

The biggest struggle was finding the perfect person to play the Dad. We saw a bunch of audition tapes and while all the actors were great they didn’t have what we needed. We were finally introduced to Bruce and he is such a fantastic actor. He was able to portray the deep father/daughter bond and how easily that can switch based on his judgements.

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

My initial reaction was that everyone noticed all of the little things that were important to us in the writing process. From the brother and sister relationship to Ted being the most unconnected but at the same time the most connected. The audience seemed to see what we were originally thinking.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

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

This was an idea that came to me after talking to a friend that was having a hard time getting older and not having found a mate yet. I felt like it needed to be said that everyone’s journey is different and sometimes it isn’t what you expected.

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

Grease and for some reason Hunger Games Mockingjay. If it’s on, I watch it!

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

It is really easy and I thought it was helpful in all the areas I needed assistance.

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

This is such a hard question. To be honest, I listened to Taylor Swift on repeat. I do it because I love her as an artist but the music itself puts me in a good mood.

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

Good Boy Treat Productions is currently working on two new films. One is in pre-production and the other is still in the script writing phase.

Interview with Filmmaker Julia C. Liu (DRIVING WHILE BLACK MAGIC)

DRIVING WHILE BLACK MAGIC played to rave reviews at the January 2021 Filmmakers Film Festival.

1. What motivated you to make this film?

I met the story creator, Vatic Tayari Kuumba through a mutual friend at an art show in Providence, RI where we live. He is a visionary playwright, and I was looking for a story to develop into a film. We quickly discovered we are both interested in making weird art from an anti-racist lens.His writing is so vivid, it jumps out as something that should be on screen. We teamed up to develop one of his plays into a short film, creating a cinematic experience that drops the viewer into the universe of Providence Plantations, an alternate near future similar to our own. Folks who live outside of RI may not know our official state name was the “State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations” up until November 2020, when we voted to drop the Plantations part. Very long overdue.

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

One year from start to finish, with a long six month pause in between.

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

subversive surrealism

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

Figuring out when to trust my instincts, when to listen to others, and when to take a break and come back tomorrow is still something I’m learning.

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

The feedback was very thoughtful and specific. I felt like the audience members watched the film closely, and one person even watched it more than once! That is probably one of the best compliments you can get as a filmmaker- when someone finishes watching and then watches it again right after.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

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

The idea was based on the first scene of a play written by Vatic Tayari Kuumba, who was my collaborator on this film.

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

I had Little Shop of Horrors on VHS when I was a kid and have probably watched that over a hundred times. As an adult you realize how disturbing it is, but I think I would still find it entertaining. The songs are great.

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

It was very easy and streamlined to submit through FilmFreeway.

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

I don’t have a good answer for this and I feel like people are going to be super judgemental about it no matter what. So I’ll just say in the last year, I’ve listened to Tierra Whack’s song “Unemployment” a bunch. The music video is amazing.

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

I’m a Director but also work as a Director of Photography. I’m DPing a short sizzle for a comedy series next week for a director that I really like.