Here's a strange little movie I made in 2013 as part of a community I was involved with called The Attic Studios. It was a group of actors, directors, writer and filmmakers that got together once a week to network and have a laugh in the pub after workshops and performances.
Each year we had a short movie contest where some scripts would be chosen and then we would break into groups to make them. I wasn't very interested in getting involved that year because I was so busy with my sculpture work but when this script was chosen and nobody wanted to direct it, I was asked would I accept the challenge.
To be honest I didn't like the script as it made no sense to me and the humour was not... how would you call it? Funny. But to do my part for the community I said yes. It might be fun and a good learning experience.
I love the film making process but I always find it becomes a bigger and bigger undertaking the further you get into it.
For the car scenes, I shot them in a half-finished housing estate close to my house. There was a closed road that I could, guerilla-style, set up a jib I had built to get that quite professional opening shot. I had my friend Mia Mularkey on hand as a camera operator for when I had to act as key grip and everything else behind the camera.
My favourite scenes in the whole movie are the ones with the ballet dancer and scientist. When reading the script first I wondered where the hell would I shot these. Flying the cast and crew to Russia sounded a bit expensive based on a budget of nothing so I had to think creatively. I was thinking of doing it blue screen but with my amateur set up and no budget, this was not a goer. Finally, I decided to not even try to do a location and instead get the actors to work their magic. I hung up a black cloth on my living room wall and went minimal. I really enjoyed directing these scenes, like a film within the film. The Ballet dancer, Aoife Moore is actually a professional dancer and was great fun to work with to get the comic panto timing. Scientist Hilary Cotter also really got into the roll and all together with Clodagh and myself behind the camera, we had a great evening of creativity which for me, at least, made the whole film worth making. It was great collaborating with these guys.
I don't think any of the actors actually understood the point of the script but did their best to bring it to life. For Clodagh as the pregnant woman, she knows it was not her best performance and Pagraig as the taxi man, he was just playing along. Handy that he is a taxi driver when not acting. Yvonne usher as the dreamer was pretty good in her role and also got the producer role.
After editing, which helped in forcing me to learn some new skills like motion tracking the title at the start we presented it to the jury. The whole process to about 1 week to put together between all the other things I had going on.
The night of the prize-giving was a pretend star-studded affair where everyone dressed up for the red carpet. I think that was the closest most of us would ever get to the real thing. Happily, for all our team our film got Best Picture and to top it all I got the Best Director award. It was a nice surprise.
I am not putting this out there as my best work but just thought I should document it as I finish up my other posts from 2013