Your new movie Chiral
- in a few words, what is it about?
The film is about an art dealer who has his iPad stolen on the night of
his gallery opening. He confronts the would-be thief, and discovers that
nothing is what he thinks it is.
You came up with the
story for Chiral
together with your leads Nelson Leis and Vanessa Walsh - so who had the
original idea, what can you tell us about the creative process, and your
sources of inspiration when writing story and screenplay?
and Vanessa were working on a short film idea, based on an incident that
happened at Vanessa's workplace. The original idea was about chirality,
which is a scientific term dealing with molecules and I was really
intrigued about exploring Jungian theory in a short film. I took the
original story idea and wrote the script, using Nelson and Vanessa as
sounding boards. It's a luxury to be able to write and create with your
lead actors, rather than having to write in a vacuum.
what extent can you actually identify with your lead Hank?
after we filmed and finished the film, I lost my own father. In some ways,
the story feels a little prophetic: I didn't expect to have my own life as
fractured as it has been over the last year. I can identify with the
burden of expectation on Hank's shoulders.
think Chiral is a movie
that keeps you guessing long after you've seen it - a fair assessment, and
if so, what can you tell us about that aspect of your movie?
Chiral can be seen in quite a number of ways. For me, it is directly
related to my own understanding of Jung: The anima/animus of our
identity, and our relationship to the shadow self. This film is probably
the most esoteric of any films I've written or directed, but probably
because of my own personal experiences this last year.
can you tell us about your directorial approach to your story at hand?
With this film, everything was handheld and shot on a small Sony DSLR. I
didn't want anything to feel stable or moored, because Hank's world is
about to splinter. The slightly nauseating feeling is something I was
playing with: I supposed it's a little sadistic to try to make the
audience feel like I've been feeling over the last year...
talk about your cast, and why exactly these people?
story comes from Nelson and Vanessa, so there was no question that they
would be my two central leads. I brought Ingrid Nilson on board to balance them
out: Ingrid is a talented actress and voice actress, but also my yoga
instructor. She has a certain warmth that I wanted to balance against the
coolness of Nelson and Vanessa's energies: I wanted to make sure that Hank
had someone in his life that was an achor, even if he rejects her help.
can you tell us about the shoot as such, and the on-set atmosphere?
shot over two days in an art gallery space, actually felt like a gallery
opening because we had all the extras, as well as a Dutch television crew
that was shooting our set as part of a reality show. It was all a
little surreal, like the shoot itself! Everything was a bit guerilla: My
DP Michael Balfry used minimal lighting, we had the handheld camera and a
little rig, and that's about it. I love working with a small crew if I can
get away with it - it's a little more work for everyone but we're more
agile and flexible.
$64-question of course, when and where will Chiral
be released onto the general public?
We're just starting to get into film festivals: We had our world
premiere at the Monsters of Film festival in Sweden, and our North
American premiere is at Blood in the Snow in Toronto. There's a few
other invitations but I can't announce those until the festivals give me
Anything you can
tell us about audience and critical reception of your movie yet?
Actually, you're our first review! Friends and family, as lovely as they
are, make terrible critics.
Feeling lucky ?
any of my partnershops yourself
for more, better results ?
The links below
will take you
Any future projects you'd like to share?
have two new feature scripts and a mini-series, but I have some fairly
extensive writing to do on them. There's a certain hell in writing, I have
to admit. I also have another feature film script I wrote in the same way
for Nelson and Vanessa, but it's a 1970s road trip movie set in the Nevada
movie's website, Facebook, whatever else?
Just the FB page, at the moment -
you're dying to mention and I have merely forgotten to ask?
weirdest thing happened to Nelson last week: His iPad was stolen by a
transient out of a coffee shop and literally, it was like the film, minus
the ending. Nelson said that if I was manifesting, wouldn't it be better
if I wrote the next film for him and Vanessa set on a beach in Maui...?
for the interview!