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Rotoreliefs@Rich Mix

Tuesday 27 September 2011, by Abla Kandalaft

Rotoreliefs brought us another night of leftfield short films and other more experimental and always entertaining productions at Rich Mix London.

Hello Carter by Anthony Wilcox

An offbeat, beautifully put together, understated comedy about a man fired from his workplace before bumping into his pregnant ex-girlfriend.

Q Tell us about the film.
I wanted to make a comedy in a more cinematic, stylised way, in a manner similar to many American productions.

Q You had a hospital, a library, a baby… they are usually difficult to include in a film…
The baby was the editor’s sister’s baby, she was three weeks old, we got lucky. The hospital and library hire cost us money. We had a budget of 80 000 pounds . The cast and crew worked for nothing.

Q How long was the shoot?
3 days, but it took time to bring the money and people together, that took a year.

Q Was there a pre-production period?
No, whent the cast became available we had a three week running

Q How many people were in the crew?
The crew was about 20 people strong.

Q How did you cast the actors?
I had worked as an assistant director for years, so these were cast and crew I had worked with before.

Q What is your background?
I started as a runner 14 years ago, became an assistant director and now I try to concentrate on directing.

Q Do you think the industry has changed for short films?
No I don’t think so, actually it’s become less difficult with the technology available. It’s always hard to find funds, we had to raise them privately.

Q Would you change anything about the film now you’re watching it?
Yes, I am actually writing a feature film version based on the main character and I would change a number of things.

Q What now?
I was lucky to get an agent off the back of this film, my main motivation was less to tour festivals than to make something that was a bit of a teaser.

Voices is a bite-size documentary unlike any other. The usual outward focus has been turned on its head. Director Ed Dallal embarks upon a journey of self-discovery by cumulating complete strangers’ answers to random questions, and using contradictions, exaggerations, doubts to compose a patchwork of opinions that are ultimately his, in all their confusion and complexity, and that he felt they expressed more eloquently than he could.

Q Did you learn anything about yourself?
We got honest responses, I don’t think I would have expressed things so honestly.

Q How did you go about it?
We went round Soho, Bethnal Green and asked people who looked interesting. I found an application that allows you to cycle through questions rapidly, the fast pace gets a more honest response.

Q Did you do all the editing?
Yes. When I reviewed all the material, it was obvious what I was going to use, I mixed lots of people’s answers to convey the confusion I felt about certain things, in regards to belief in God for example.

Q Did you get release forms from all the people?
Yes.

Q What now?
I used this film to get onto a programme called Documentary Campus, a fantastic opportunity to go around Europe and meet people in the industry and pitch ideas. I am now working on a new documentary called The Quest for the Holy Foreskin. We are looking for crowd funding.
[To find out more about how you can help go to http://www.indiegogo.com/The-Quest-for-the-Holy-Foreskin ]

Q Is there anyone you interviewed you particularly admired?
Yes, the woman who owns the gallery. She had an opening night on. We came in and asked questions, some of them personal, and she was open and genuine. There was also a homeless guy who had a remarkable degree of honesty.

Q Did you experience any problems filming in the street?
The police hassled us a bit around Trafalgar Square.

Special mentions goes to the weirdly hypnotic video to to “Ace if Hz” by Ladytron, directed by Chino Moya, Nuria Camprecios from Sin Fin Cinema, a network of support for Spanish film makers here and in the US [Watch out for their upcoming event the Spanish Cinematic Experience] and Stanka goes home, a festival favourite by Maya Vitkova who couldn’t be there that evening.

Time/Out by Sheridan de Myers
A breakup talk with a twist.

Q How did the idea come about?
My flatmate at uni and I wanted to write a comedy piece together and watched a few things from various films from the 80s to inspire us. This was my first short film, it was a personal film that I didn’t plan on screening.
I was actually cheating on my girlfriend at the time we wrote. We took the idea and tried to make it as dramatic as possible.
We added credits to make it look like a bigger film, but in fact it was just three people shooting. We begged for loads of film and got 20 min worth. The shoot lasted a day and cost 500 pounds and an Indian takeaway.

Q How did you get a camera for free?
I had actually made a music video at the time and hustled it, the guy saw I was broke and just gave it to me.

Q How did you start out?
I was always making silly films since the age of 14, 15. I went to YCTV which provides film making opportunities for young people and carried on from there.

Q And now?
I am preparing a feature called Weekend.

Q I really liked the girlfriend. How did you direct her?
I was a new director so I just told the actors to have the emotion of finding out something that surprising and then make it subtle.

The Guy in the Tie is a truly original construction, built around a montage of screenshots. It’s a director mucking about, experimenting with basic technique. It’s simple, silly and very funny.

Q How did the idea come about?
I wanted to come up with something very basic, basic script, filmed with a voice over added on to it.

Q Was it shot on film?
No, high def camera rented from uni.

Q How long was the shoot?
It took 2 days, we shot in our local area. The beach scene, what we called “the money shot” was shot in Southend.

Q What were your inspirations?
Director John Smith and a scene in the film George of the Jungle, in which the characters talk to the narrator.

Feel free to comment below. Any more specific questions to the organisers or directors email us at abla@mydylarama.org.uk or judy@mydylarama.org.uk.

Next Rotoreliefs will be on at the Roxy on 12 October!

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