Interview with Filmmaker David Mahmoudieh (SNAKE DICK)

SNAKE DICK was the winner of BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY at the April 2021 LGBTQ+ Film Festival.

1. What motivated you to make this film?

I first had the idea for “Snake Dick” when Donald Trump did his first live debate while running for president, so sometime back in late 2015. It was just so bizarre to watch this convicted fraudster and serial misogynist running – and eventually winning – election in a country that had pioneered Women’s Rights. I think a big part of why the #MeToo movement took off not long after his election was because so many women were disgusted at the idea of having someone like that making decisions about their bodies – it was the proverbial final straw. I’m also a self-confessed feminist and my heart was broken by all the stories so many women in my life have shared with me about their own #MeToo experiences. That’s where the nucleus of the idea came from, then my love of trashy 80’s revenge movies filled in the rest.

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

Well if the initial idea came in late 2015, I guess we’re coming up on 6 years. However, it wasn’t until a good few years later that we actually shot the film – namely because I was trying to convince myself that making a movie called “Snake Dick” could actually work!

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

Feminist. Fun.

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

The VFX was the biggest hurdle, purely due to the time consumption. Thankfully we had amazing people in Fiona Campbell-Westgate and Stephen Cunnane, and then later Ryan Wieber and Chris Wells who did some additional VFX, like the burning city at the end. These are all incredibly talented people (Fiona, for example, just completed James Gunn’s ‘The Suicide Squad’) but “Snake Dick” was a passion project that paid next to nothing, so we had to be patient, fit our requirements in around much bigger projects and let our post schedule be somewhat flexible. Also, that global pandemic thing that’s been going around definitely threw a spanner in the works. Eventually it all came together though and we were really happy with the end results – definitely worth the wait.

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

I watched it with the producer, George Lako, and we were first of all obviously relieved all of the feedback was positive! We also both noticed how analytical the viewers were. There were some great interpretations in there and it’s always a pleasure to get people talking and thinking about the deeper issues at the heart of Snake Dick – that’s exactly why we made the film, so that was great to see too.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

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

I took that aforementioned absurdity of Donald Trump’s run for president and realized I needed something equally batshit to convey the level of “fuck no” I had towards it. My wife once told me something that also came into play. During a conversation about women being in more danger than men when traveling alone, she observed that male safety ultimately comes down to one body part between their legs, “which in the case of men is called Freedom.” That really stuck with me for something. I then started thinking how I could visualize that freedom in both a phallic and yet symbolic way… and here we are.

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

Big Trouble In Little China. Hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of times. If they ever do a movie version of Lip Synch Battle, where you mimic your favorite film instead, they might as well just advance me to the finals if this movie’s on the ticket.

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

I like it. It’s reasonably intuitive. I certainly prefer it to sites like FestHome, for example. One thing that’s a little annoying on Film Freeway is the way it won’t show “true” deadlines. Like I’ve run into a couple of occasions where I believed a festival’s deadline was weeks away, only to discover the category I wanted to submit to had already closed. It would be great if they could indicate more specifically as to when the most important category deadlines are, rather than letting any category that’s still open make it speak for the others in the search results.

9. What is your favorite meal?

Pizza. If I could shrink all my favorite pizzas into little tiny pizzas, then use those pizzas as toppings on one Ultimate Pizza… I totally would.

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

I just finished the script for the feature version of “Snake Dick” which we’re getting ready to take out, and I’m attached to direct a couple of features we’re currently out to talent on. So with a bit of luck at least one of those will happen this year. But the next film I know I’ll be shooting is a charity short for Kids In The Spotlight called “Bully”, written by Rodney Jackson-Brown, one of the talented foster youth in their program. Remember that name, he’s a future filmmaker of merit…

Interview with Filmmaker Sara Moralo (SUNNY BOY)

SUNNY BOY was the winner of BEST DIRECTION at the April 2021 LGBTQ+ Film Festival.

1. What motivated you to make this film?

I think there is still very few queer POC representations in the media and cinema. I had been wanting to work with the topics of new masculinities from an intersectional feminist perspective for quite a while. I knew Kumar, he was my friend, and I thought he would be perfect to explore the topics of sexuality, masculinity, race, faith, immigration, and above all, how all these identities overlap. I believe that in a time in which the far right is making its way to parliaments in the West, brown stories of sensitive gay men in which they are not only portrayed as gay but also as sons, as spiritual people, as immigrants, are important. The culture of yoga, especially in cities like London, is so whitewashed that claiming it back for Indian people was a must for us. I was lucky he was interested in this project and trusted me to do it.

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

It took quite a while, like a year and a half, because I had to first get all the audio content of the movie to then film his own reactions to it. I was on a low budget and had to do most of the work so that took time too.

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

Intimate and honest.

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

Being on such a low budget required a tremendous effort. From a narrative point of view, it was challenging to get the rhythm balanced to maintain the viewer’s attention throughout all the experiences he talks about while also giving space for reflection.

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

It was great to see all these lovely people spending time to generously talk about Sunny Boy. It is so rewarding to see that they related to it. This year everyone has felt very isolated with the pandemic. It has been very hard not being able to attend the festivals, with many moving online, meaning not having any contact with the audience. You create a film to tell a story and communicate with people, and that process got interrupted during this past year. Seeing the audience talking about the film was the closest to being back in a cinema as a social experience. It really moved me. We are very grateful to the festival for having done this.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

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

I was working at Curzon Soho cinema in London at the time, where Kumar was also a member of staff. We became close friends and then I felt I wanted to make a documentary about him. His life experiences were very interesting to me and related to all the themes I usually work with like sexuality, race, gender, etc. The fact he was an actor and a close friend made it easier to reach the level of intimacy and honesty I was looking for. He is an amazing person, humble and brutally honest, and I thought his life stories needed to be heard.

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

The Hours and Portrait Of A Lady On Fire.

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

I think it is a very easy and solid platform to use. It really makes it simple to submit films to festivals.

9. What is your favorite meal?

Tough question. Do I have to choose? I’ll be a Spanish cliché then and will go with Iberian ham (hoping I won’t offend a lot of people, sorry).

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

Yes, I am now working on a new documentary project, this time feature length. It tells the story of oppression and persecution that LGBT+ people suffered during the Francoist dictatorship. At least five thousand people were imprisoned because of their sexual and gender identity in Spain. The film also brings into sharp focus the vulnerability and lack of social care that these LGTBQ elders currently live with. Their life stories and activism show their strength, not only to survive, but also to live with dignity.
We are now in the preproduction phase, hoping we can shoot the film next year.

Interview with Filmmaker Bryan Santiago (GRAFTON)

GRAFTON was awarded BEST THRILLER Film at the April 2021 THRILLER/SUSPENSE Film Festival.

1. What motivated you to make this film?

I had a meeting with a potential manager and I told her I was working on a feature for years and years titled MIASM, and that we were so close to getting fully funded and then we didn’t. She asked me why I haven’t made a short, to which I gave a blank stare over the phone. That blank space was filled with an idea. Grafton.

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

That conversation with the manager was November 2019, I finished the script January 2020, and we were set to start shooting March 13th, 2020. But then COVID hit and it all got postpone. Luckily, we were able to shoot in Vermont (which has very low covid numbers) in late August and had post finished by December 2021. So it was a quick turn around!

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

Playful Nightmare

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

Covid

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

It was so exciting because up until that point I had had so few reactions from people I have not met.
It was so valuable to hear so many different perspectives from people who obviously love the art of filmmaking.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

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

It was a combination of things. I had recently moved part time to Vermont from New York City and I found people’s generosity and kindness overwhelming, while simultaneously suspicious of it. The way the story was developed was partly a mix between my own life circumstances, my love of the original Twilight Zone, and the true story of Paula Weldon and her disappearance in an area called the Vermont Triangle located in the forgotten town of Glastonbury.

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

The Shining

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

I think it’s amazing honestly. Keeps everything organized and is great for discovering little known festivals I might not have known otherwise.

9. What is your favorite meal?

Vegan Tacos

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

I am working on creating Grafton the series (just finished the first draft of Episode #2) as well as trying to resurrect my feature film, MIASM. Can’t seem to let that one go!

Interview with Filmmaking Team of Anna Kong, Audee Halim, Gil Milstein (SLIPPING IN TIME)

SLIPPING IN TIME was awarded BEST SOUND & MUSIC at the April 2021 LGBTQ+ Film Festival.

1. What motivated you to make this film?

Anna (Director): “This film was the final project for our art degree in NZ, and we wanted to finish off with a story that was meaningful for us. Our entire team is queer or ally, and we wanted to tell a cool love story from our perspective, divert from the tropes and stereotypes, because love is love. When we made this Film in 2020, with the many conflicts in the world, we were all forced to reconsider the priorities in our lives, just as Shelley had done. Ultimately, as we all learn from our lives and characters: we make the choices that determine our lives, and who we are. Personally this project means more than just a film for me. I have grown with the film and learnt to take a fresh perspective on different relationships in life.”

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

From the moment we chose the story, it was 14 week of hard work to complete.

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

Absolutely electrifying

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

The time constraint, relative to the amount of people actively working on it.

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

Anna: “It just feels surreal because I never expected people to love it so much, as much as we did.”
Audee (Art Director): “I was squealing, a bit of laughing, and a bit of rolling on the floor.”
Gil (Producer/Original Story): “I was so happy and giggly. It was so cool to see how they loved our story and picked up on our various artistic intentions.”

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

Gil: “When originally writing the story in the middle of lockdown, I knew I wanted to experiment with influences of German expressionism and classic science fiction stories, as I loved the strong visuals and knew they had the potential to be both engaging and really fun to make. Wanting to divert from the overused trope of the white male scientist and his assistant/Igor, the story naturally evolved to be around our two lovely protagonists (Mary and Shelley) who are queer women of science (at times were it was not wildly accepted), and equal partners, with strong actions and motivations. We all quickly fell in love with our characters, and enjoyed building the world around them with the juxtaposition and relationship of heavy machinery and femininity.”

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

Anna and Audee: Slipping in Time, haha. We watched it countless times on the editing floor.
Gil: Probably The Princess Bride wins for me, I watched it so, so many times.

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

It’s trustworthy, professional, and convenient. It’s a little difficult though to sort through the multitudes of possible festivals.

9. What is your favorite meal?

Anna: I eat eggs 24/7
Audee: (whispers) everythinnnggg
Gil: Ice cream 🙂

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

At the moment we’re all pursuing our careers all around the world. We would love to work with each-other again someday in the future, and we already have a few ideas for stories we want to tell.

Interview with Filmmaker Kami Sadraei (THE SLEEPLESS)

THE SLEEPLESS was awarded BEST BLACK & WHITE film at the April 2021 WILDsound Film Festival.

1. What motivated you to make this film?

I was writing a 40 minute short at first but i realized it will be very complicated and expensive to shoot so one night i started brainstorming and came up with the idea of this film. my goal was to keep the setting very simple yet interesting. It’s hard to believe but I wrote the script in one sitting and just did a few edits later. The whole dialogue and story just came rushing out of me with no interruptions.

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

I wrote the script in one night. the preproduction took one month. The hardest part was getting to Eric roberts. we shot it over 2 full days. and editing took 2 weeks. I still feel it was not enough time on set. I would have loved to have done more takes.

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

SAD REVENGE

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

The hardest part was getting an answer from Eric’s agent. He was a dick

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

It was so fascinating to see others liking the same exact things I like about my film, like cinematography. it was great to see others having the same point of view as me. I also think they were very kind to me in their feedback.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

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

I love the thriller mystery genre and this was my interpretation of a one scene thriller.

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

Casino Royale. I think it’s a masterpiece. I’m not a huge fan of 2001 a space odyssey. I have a very specific taste.

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

I think Filmfreeway makes it very easy and streamlined

9. What is your favorite meal?

I’m Iranian American so my favorite food is an Iranian dish called GHORMEH SABZI which is a stew made from beef, beans and lots of vegetables served with rice.

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

Yes, I started writing a feature thriller and I’m 1/3 done. It’s a lot more work but I can’t wait to finish it and shoot it. There will be many twists in this film as well.

Please see the interview below

Interview with Filmmaker Nathalie Therriault (THE TAILOR)

THE TAILOR was the winner of BEST SHORT FILM at the April 2021 LGBTQ+ Film Festival.

1. What motivated you to make this film?

I had been writing for a few years and wanted to make a film. I liked the humanity in this story and the message. I came out at a later age and there were personal consequences to that. I thought it was an important story to tell.

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

It took approximately 2 years.

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

tender and beautiful

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

Honestly, the biggest obstacle was myself. This was first film and it was a steep learning curve. I didn’t always feel the most confident as a Director. But I learned important lessons on how I work creatively in relation to film making which in the end is a huge gift.

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

I was moved by their generosity. And was surprised how perceptive they were at noticing the nuances and choices that were put into the film. It was lovely to watch. I greatly appreciated the feedback.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

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

I was sitting at a gathering and in that building was a tailor shop. One of the guests mentioned that they believed they were the master tailor’s last clients as he had recently passed. So, I began thinking about this elderly tailor and the reasons why he kept the shop open into his 90s. And as I went deeper into the story, I realized I was flushing out a story about the relationship with my mother and my coming out and ultimately self acceptance.

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

Probably Rust and Bone.

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

It’s fantastic. Everything you need really in one place. The festival descriptions and mandates were especially helpful in curating my submissions.

9. What is your favorite meal?

Hands down spaghetti bolognese

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

There are a few films in the works but I have another short film titled “Latchkey” that is ready to be filmed and am in the process of securing funding for it.

Interview with Filmmaker Darren Doherty (TIED)

TIED played to rave reviews at the April 2021 THRILLER/SUSPENSE Film Festival.

1. What motivated you to make this film?

I started out as an Animator and had a history of animating and directing Idents and sketches for comedy shows as well as making animated films. However, as a screenwriter, I’ve always written all kinds of stories and I really wanted to make a live action short. I developed the script and really wanted to play with status between characters within the film. As the script and characters developed, so more people got on board and it soon snowballed. Going forward, I’m working on feature projects, and this film could help with getting those projects off the ground.

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

This short took a long time for sure and probably much longer than I initially thought it would. I think mostly because the budget was so small! I was a flat mate of one of the actors originally and I started writing a character for him, and the project grew from there. Finding the locations during pre-production was a challenge, but I was lucky and the locations I approached were really receptive to what I was pitching. I was also lucky to have a brilliant cast & crew who really came together to make this film possible, even when it seemed like we were really up against it at times.

We shot at the first location (in the railway tunnel) during the summer, but then shot at another railway location (where we shot the train) a few months later in the winter, just after The Woman in Black with Daniel Radcliffe had finished filming. We also shot pick-ups and details in a studio.

I met my editor at the Berlin Talent Campus and we always said we’d work together – he’s based in Copenhagen, which wasn’t a problem as he came to stay with me for a while to really shape the film as we locked the picture. The film had a real international co-production feel about it with the Sound Designer and Composer living in Berlin, but this was all made possible through working online.

A lot of the time I had to wait for the next window of opportunity when people would be free which was totally fine, as they were people I really wanted to work with. The film was always moving forward and growing, so it made sense not to try and rush it either.

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

Very Intense!

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

There were lots of obstacles, mostly through having such a small budget, but that’s part and parcel of filmmaking; coming up against problems and trying to figure them out creatively. I think the two biggest obstacles occurred during Pre-Production. An actor I originally cast dropped out as the Royal Shakespeare Company had offered him a six-month contract, and this was a week before we were due to shoot – I just couldn’t compete with the Bard. Luckily, he sent the script to another Actor he knew, and luckily the new Actor was actually better in terms of casting and was brilliant to work with, so it was a happy accident. The other obstacle was the original Sound Recordist dropping out, also due to being offered other work. I talked to lots of people, but when I heard myself saying ‘night shoots in a railway tunnel for expenses’, it really probably didn’t sound like a good prospect! Again, I lucked out when a Sound Recordist came on board who really liked the script and the technical challenge of working in a railway tunnel pretty much surrounded by dirt, insects and pigeons!

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

Wow – amazing! I felt so lucky to be able to actually see & hear feedback from the audience, especially in this time of Covid and Lockdowns. A lot of the times I’ve had films screen in festivals, unless you’re doing an audience Q&A, you don’t really get to audience feedback and comments directly. So, to have the chance to hear what audience members thought of the film and what they had to say was awesome, especially as I’m on the other side of the world in London. The comments are really valued and appreciated, and I thought the feedback was perceptive, insightful and really useful too. I’m just really pleased you selected the film and I want to say a huge thanks to the audience for watching – it’s been a real morale booster for me too.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

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

I wanted to write a character driven, high stakes Thriller, a film where we, the audience, are thrown right into the deep end, and I loved the notion of a wound between two characters, and could it be healed? I also wanted to play with shifting status between characters in a heightened situation and tell the story visually. As a kid in Manchester I grew up right next to railway tracks, a railway line running right behind our house in where all kinds of stuff happened. So, there’s always been something that’s captivated me visually and psychologically about that setting. Tied is a window into a bigger story that I’m developing in the background.

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

Haha that’s such a tough question! I’ve seen so many films so many times…Blue Velvet, Vertigo, Alien, The Exorcist, Ringu, La Haine, Don’t Look Now, The Shining…Mulholland Drive – sorry too many!

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

From a filmmakers POV, I think it’s worked really well for me. Being able to upload a film, sort out all the submission requirements and filter festival searches to find Festivals that suit, I’ve enjoyed using the Platform.

9. What is your favorite meal?

Just like question 7, this is a tough one as I love all kinds of food – I love Italian, but I’m really into South Indian food at the moment – I had a great Masala Dosa the other night.

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

Having had done a lot of home schooling over the last year, I’ve been working on various projects with various collaborators when I can. I’m shooting online content for a Theatre Company next week and I’ve also just finished the latest draft of a pilot screenplay for a series (a horror series). We also stared a new animated short film last year pre lockdown, but it’s been understandably slow going given current situation – hopefully that will pick up. I’ve also been working on a new feature film idea, a kind of trippy jazz horror, and hopefully we can shoot a proof of concept short for this at some point this year – fingers crossed.

Interview with Filmmaker Michael Jeanpert (ANOMALY)

ANOMALY was the winner of BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY at the April 2021 WILDsound Film Festival.

1. What motivated you to make this film?

I have been a film buff since I was a child (thanks dad and your awesome VHS collection), I love cinema and as far as I can remember I always wanted to be part of this world. I have often been deeply moved by movies and I always felt the need to “return the favour” by directing my own films. To move people the way I was moved as an audience member is what I’m trying to achieve. I consider myself an entertainer. Telling stories is a beautiful thing and this film is another opportunity to do just that.

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

From the very first idea that popped into my head when I was driving home on a sunny afternoon, to the last day of post-production, 2 and a half years more or less.

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

It’s a love story. An impossible love story.

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

It has to be the lack of money. Making a movie is like cutting a tree, when you have money you can use a chainsaw, but when you don’t have money all you can afford is a kitchen knife. You can cut down the tree with both tools. But using a kitchen knife is WAY MORE painful and time consuming.

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

It was amazing. After all this work, it felt really great to hear what total strangers had to say about it. There’s a saying: making a film is easy, making a good one is very hard and I think we succeeded in telling a good story. People like the movie! This is the greatest reward.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

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

Ideas usually come from the movies I watch. I get inspired a lot by great stories but most of these ideas are often pretty bad, too cliché or impossible to make. But once in a while you think of something that works, that is simple enough, solid and doable. These ideas are the one I’m focusing on, and ANOMALY was one of them.

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

It has to be SE7EN by David Fincher. I must have seen it a hundred times. The movie feels like home, it’s grim but it cheers me up. I watch it to feel good when I’m having a hard time in my life.

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

It’s great. It makes the submission process way much easier.

9. What is your favorite meal?

Couscous. “A food so nice they named it twice”

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

I’m writing a feature film. It’s a lot of work, it takes time and the outcome is uncertain but I love it. I hope I’ll get another chance to sit in the director’s chair in the near future. There’s another saying: by Grabthar’s Hammer, never give up, never surrender.

Interview with Filmmaker Matilde Cellie (CAMILLA)

CAMILLA played to rave reviews at the April 2021 LGBTQ+ Film Festival.

What motivated you to make this film?

During the second year of my University in Milan we had to make different short movies for different classes. “Camilla” was my first movie as a director, writer and executive producer. We had carte blanche on everything. The only thing our teacher asked us to do was to delve into ourselves and bring out a subject that was just “ours”. I decided that was time to talk about how important, upsetting, stressful and scary it can be to discover one’s sexuality during adolescence.

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

It took abut three months to write it. I asked help to a terrific writer, who also was a friend of mine. Despite having clear the plot, the characters, the locations and the shots it was difficult to write the dialogues. It took a month to organise the crew, the cast and locations. I was very lucky to find the perfect members for the project. Moreover, the maze that you see at the beginning and at the end of the movie it is the biggest maze in the world in his kind and it happened to be in Parma, where I live. Finally, the shooting was done in four days.

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

Intense and gentle.

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

Probably the short amount of time we had to shoot. There were too many shots and location’s change.

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

I was terrified. My biggest fear was that I wasn’t able to convey the meaning of the movie. But then I heard people analyze the characters and their purpose and find new amazing interpretations. I was moved.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

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

It all started creating the character of Charon (the disturbing and demonic figure in the movie). I studied greek literature and always found it fascinating. I decided to talk about something I knew from the past and combine it with a theme of our times. Charon is the metaphor of Camilla’s inner discomfort.

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

Wasn’t clear yet? Pan’s Labyrinth of course. Directed by Guillermo del Toro.

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

I think it’s an amazing and efficient platform. It gives you the possibility to show your movie all over the world in a very simple and effective way.

9. What is your favorite meal?

Well, I am Italian so anything my mom cooks. And pasta.

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

I hope so. First of all I wish I could travel abroad again and then create new opportunities for myself in the film industry.

Interview with Filmmaker Wesley Shrum (LIGHT YEARS)

What motivated you to make this film?

The film was actually motivated by the Year of Light (‘and Light-Based Technologies’ if I remember correctly). And what could be more about light than film noir?

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

6 weeks

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

Evil Fresnel

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

Finding the old footage!

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

I wasn’t sure they knew who the killer was. I think some didn’t get it.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Video:

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

My partner Greg Scott thought we could burn up cameras with a Fresnel lens—which we did. And it was the cameras that were the murder victims.

What film have you seen the most in your life?

Clockwork Orange

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

I direct the Ethnografilm festival in Paris (since 2007). And I couldn’t live without it, from a festival perspective. I think more about that.

What is your favorite meal?

Homemade pasta (mine!)

What is next for you? A new film?

I’m a professor of sociology and right now I’m doing a 10 country study of coronavirus so I have to finish that before my new film!