Interview with Director Margaret Costa (MY NAME IS JOAN)

Margaret Costa’s short film was the winner of BEST FILM at the August 2017 DOCUMENTARY FEEDBACK Short Film Festival

Matthew Toffolo: What motivated you to make this film?

Margaret Costa: I thought the topic was compelling and the story needed to be told. The fact that the Catholic Church and the Irish Government profited and abused unwed mothers and their children is unimaginable, yet it happened.

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

From start to finish, it took 5 years.

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

What the?

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

Money.

What were your initial reactions sitting in the cinema and watching the audience talking about your film?

Wow. I was right, this is a disturbing topic and the film is compelling.

Watch the AUDIENCE FEEDBACK of the Short Film:

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

I met Susan, she told me about her adoption and I started doing research.

What film have you seen the most in your life?

Probably, the Wizard of Oz.

You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway, what are you feelings of the new(ish) submission platform from a filmmaker’s perspective?

I think it’s fabulous.

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

That’s tough. My favorite group is Queen, but if I had to pick one song, it would probably be “Rocks Off” by the Stones.

What is next for you? A new film?

I do have a lot of ideas for a new film, but right now I’m negotiating with a distributor to sell this film world wide and will most likely create a longer version for distribution.
____
Interviewer Matthew Toffolo is currently the CEO of the WILDsound FEEDBACK Film & Writing Festival. The festival that showcases 10-20 screenplay and story readings performed by professional actors every month. And the FEEDBACK Monthly Festival held in downtown Toronto twice a month, and every other month in Los Angeles. Go to http://www.wildsound.ca for more information and to submit your work to the festival.

Advertisements

Interview with Director Jeremy Garcia (STAR WARS: TRIALS)

Played at the Fantasy/Sci-Fi FEEDBACK Film Festival – July 2017

Matthew Toffolo: What motivated you to make this film?

Erlend Bjelland: I’ve always been a huge Star Wars fan and it’s probably the films that originally got me into film making. I had recently gotten my girlfriend the lightsaber prop and thought, “I bet I could light an entire film with this lightsaber”. From there I began brainstorming and that eventually led to ‘Star Wars: Trials’.

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

I was doing nothing but working on this film for probably a solid two months. Doing several camera tests with the saber to make sure we could in fact light this whole thing with the prop. All together I spent about 40 hours rotoscoping the lightsaber effect in each shot frame by frame.

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

Dark, Lonely

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

For this project it was definitely the music. Trying to find something that wasn’t specifically Star Wars but could get you general mood of the film and the setting was tough. I went though several different versions and at one point had just a slowed down version of the Imperial March.

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

Elated! I loved being able to see everyone’s feedback and thoughts. It’s great to see people understand and figure things out about the film that I wanted them too.

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

Part of the lore of Star Wars has always been the Trials that the Padawans must do before becoming a Jedi Knight and we’ve never been able to see that. And at one point our main character was a Jedi. Then I thought that it would be a lot more interesting if the audience (because of the name and the color of the lightsaber) only thought they were seeing a Jedi but who turned out to be not only a darkside user but Vader’s new apprentice. I thought it would be a really cool reveal if we could pull it off.

What film have you seen the most in your life?

That’s a tough one! Probably Star Wars: the Empire Strikes Back or one of the Indiana Jones films. (Not Crystal Skull

You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway, what are you feelings of the new(ish) submission platform from a filmmaker’s perspective?

So far I have nothing but good things to say about Film Freeway. They make the process super easy and convenient.

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

Another tough one. The songs I listen too most are normally tied to a good music video. Probably Hurt by Johnny Cash.

What is next for you? A new film?

I currently do a lot of work and help out with a production company called Wages of Cine. I’m about to start production as Cinematographer on one of their short films and then later in the year will be Directing a short horror film for them as well.

STAR WARS: TRIALS, 5min, USA, Action/Adventure
Directed by Jeremy Garcia

Rowan awakes in the dark depths of a cave with nothing but her lightsaber. As she navigates the dark environment she learns she may not be alone.

CLICK HERE – and see full info and more pics of the film!

Interview with Director Richard Paris Wilson (A MONSTER CALLED CHARLES)

Played at the Fantasy/Sci-Fi FEEDBACK Film Festival – July 2017

“A MONSTER CALLED CHARLES” was the Winner of BEST PERFORMANCES at the festival.

 Matthew Toffolo: What motivated you to make this film?

Richard Paris Wilson: I’m fascinated by monsters and magic and I was just drawn to the idea of a beautiful fantasy that was born out of a very dark reality. The bleaker the boy’s home life became the more his visions of the monster crystallised. That felt like a very rich clash to explore.

The idea of actually making it into a film started because I was teaching 14 and 15 year old kids the importance of media at the time, in a council-run centre in South London. I thought if we could get these kids involved in making an actual film together, I could spark a bit of creativity in them, and perhaps demystify a lot of the scary things about filmmaking. All of the dozen or so students involved had big responsibilities, whether they were a camera trainee handling the lenses or our 14-year old first AD running the set. It was the funnest and most chaotic media lesson ever.

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

It took awhile; too long. I think I wrote the script in early 2014, got approved for funding in the summer, shot in the winter, and then worked on post-production on-and-off for 12 months. We ran out of money at the end and we started to rely a lot on people working on post on the weekends. And I started to have new ideas and we started to layer music and VFX on top, and it just kept growing and growing, but at a very slow pace. I think it premiered in its first festival in Spring 2016, and it’s still playing at festivals into the second-half of 2017.

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

Dark Fantasy

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

Money was probably the biggest issue since many of the ideas – namely the monster – were going to be expensive, but we cracked that so early in the process it wasn’t something we battled with for long.

I do remember our first day of shooting. We had a 10-year old lead actor who we were pushing to the brink. It was midnight and we’d been shooting all day and we needed one more scene. We had a baby on set and a man in a monster costume on stilts in the mud, a crew full of students who were due home hours ago and, then it started raining. Thankfully everybody turned up to the second day.

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

Pure joy. It was a real thrill to hear people talking so thoughtfully about many of the issues and themes of the story. I am very thankful for seeing some of the discussion.

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

The idea was born out of a writing group I used to go to, where you’d have to present a new idea every fortnight. Two of the people in the group, Tommy Nagle and David Balfe, get a credit since they were integral in the story’s infancy. The actual screenplay grew very organically from the basic premise. I think the key was figuring out the monster had to eat the family dog – that created a very specific kind of tone.

What film have you seen the most in your life?

Probably Hook as a kid, Batman as a teenager and Donnie Darko as a 20-something. Now I’ve just turned 30 I’m rewatching Hook again

You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway, what are you feelings of the new(ish) submission platform from a filmmaker’s perspective?

It’s incredibly user-friendly. It’s very easy to search, submit and then keep track of all your entries. It’s the best system I’ve used.

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

How to Disappear Completely by Radiohead, because it captures melancholy so perfectly.

What is next for you? A new film?

For short films, it’ll either be a fantasy set entirely inside a laundrette or a drama set on an island in Phuket. It depends on funding.

Otherwise I’m making a short video for the John Muir Trust as I try and get more into commercials.

 

A MONSTER CALLED CHARLES, 15min, UK, Fantasy/Drama
Directed by Richard Paris WilsonThe story of a Boy who lives in a caravan park with his Mother, and a Monster who lives in a nearby woods…

CLICK HERE – and see full info and more pics of the film!

Interview with Director Holy Fatma (PLEASE LOVE ME FOREVER)

Played at the Fantasy/Sci-Fi FEEDBACK Film Festival – July 2017

“PLEASE LOVE ME FOREVER” was the Winner of BEST FILM at the festival.

 Matthew Toffolo: What motivated you to make this film?

Holy Fatma: My own heartbreaks. As they were repeating themselves in the same exact way, I tried to understand why.

And I discovered that my emotional obsessions were due to my difficult upbringing. And of course, my relationship to my mom.

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

Two years and a half. I really wanted the film to be a well crafted piece of art.

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

Horrific Tale

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

The coloring process took forever due to many unexpected technical issues. It was hell haha

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

A LOT of emotions. It’s incredible to hear & see people across the world commenting your film.

We really tried to deliver the best film possible and seeing how people react to it is just everything.

Thank you so much by the way. It’s an unbelievably sweet initiative.

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

It all started with one strong vision. This image of me cutting open my latest boyfriend’s heart.

I really wanted to understand why he didn’t love me. But the answer wasn’t there of course.

It was in me. The attachement inherited from my unstable childhood led to an healthy approach to love.

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

I’m hesitating between The Godfather & The Nightmare before Christmas !

You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway, what are you feelings of the new(ish) submission platform from a filmmaker’s perspective?

It’s just great. Very easy & efficient.

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

It’s hard but I’d say “Smile” by Michael Jackson.

What is next for you? A new film?

I’m currently working on another short for next year & a feature for 2019.

Stay posted 😉

 

PLEASE LOVE ME FOREVER, 27min, France, Fantasy/Romance
Directed by Holy Fatma

In a surreal world, Lili, a 14-year-old albino, lives alone with her mother Claudie (50) who over-protects her from the outside world. Obsessed with her own appearance; Claudie regularly replaces aging parts of her face, alone in her operating lab, while Lili dreams of Lyesse, her 16 year-old handsome neighbor. But scared by so much love, Lyesse gently pushes her away. Devastated, she decides to operate his heart to understand why he doesn’t love her…

CLICK HERE – and see full info and more pics of the film!

Interview with Director Liv Mari Ulla Mortensen (65.5)

Short Film played at the first ever EXPERIMENTAL/MUSIC VIDEO FEEDBACK Film Festival in July 2017.

Matthew Toffolo: What motivated you to make this film?

Liv Mari Ulla Mortensen: Women in sexual situations are often objectified in film, and therefore I was fascinated by statistics. Like in the film, I could easily have been reduced into only being «the girl with the father who loved Bob Dylan», like I and my friends also have reduced guys into different nicknames and characteristics. I wanted the girls to take ownership of their statistics and challenge the guy who wrote it. They didn´t want to be remembered as mere statistics.

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

About 2 years. It was written over a couple of months, then it sat for a while before we shot it in two days, with over 30 girls in one small room. The editing process was quite long and challenging.

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

Confronting and calculated

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

I decided to make the film without a score, only depending on the ambience. With many different short clips jumping in time it turned out to be quite challenging to make dynamic ambience that «sows» the film together.

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

It is amazing to be invited into the room of the viewers even though I am in Norway on the other side of the world. A lot of the comments were quite close to my intentions for the film, so seeing the video was both interesting and very motivational.

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

«65,5 women» is based on a poem by Alexander Fallo. When I heard him reading at an event I immediately though «this is a short film!». We have written the script in collaboration, and the film is my free interpretation of his text.

What film have you seen the most in your life?

Probably «The Never-ending Story»!

You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway, what are you feelings of the new(ish) submission platform from a filmmaker’s perspective?

A simple and informative way of navigating through the jungle of film festivals.

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

“Tears in heaven». Broke my heart when I was 6!

What is next for you? A new film?

I am looking forward to premiering my new short film «Flightmode” in festivals this fall, and I am also writing a new short and a feature film.
 

65.5 WOMEN, 6min, Norway, Experimental
Directed by Liv Mari Mortensen

To understand a recent failure, a young man writes a statistic of all the women he ever slept with. As he tries to simplify all of his affairs into simple characteristics the memories start to take over, leaving him to face the only one he truly wanted.

CLICK HERE – and see full info and more pics of the film!

Interview with Director Roman Rubert Bernat (REQUEMBARREN)

Short Film played at the first ever EXPERIMENTAL/MUSIC VIDEO FEEDBACK Film Festival in July 2017.

REQUEMBARREN was awarded “BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY” at the festival.

 Matthew Toffolo: What motivated you to make this film?

Roman Rubert Bernat: The stories of JL Borges

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

8 months

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

Black atmosphere

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

The numerous natural decorations

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

I was pleasantly surprised

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

Filling the book Pedro Paramo

What film have you seen the most in your life?

Viridiana

You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway, what are you feelings of the new(ish) submission platform from a filmmaker’s perspective?

Very happy

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

Marieta, of Tarrega

What is next for you? A new film?

A film based on the aphorism of Gustav Mahler ‘Tradition is not the worship of ashes, but the preservation of fire.’

REQUEMBARREN, 16min, Spain, Experimental
Directed by Roman Rubert Bernat Beatrice is a young woman who leaves home to look for Requembarren. After listening to the sad man, to the profaner, and to the incestuous man, she reflects on what happens to her on the journey.

CLICK HERE – and see full info and more pics of the film!