Part 1 How to make a career as a female filmmaker, Colourism in films, Being a Black Filmmaker, setting up BUFF Originals and making indie film No Shade with Clare and Emmanuel Anyiam-Osigwe who sit down with Giles Alderson (The Dare) and Dan Richardson (Retribution) to chat highs and lows of making indie films, Tough starts and having to fight to be what you want to be.
The British Urban Film Festival (BUFF) was formed in July 2005 to showcase urbanindependentcinema in the absence of any such state-sponsored activity in the UK.
Supported by filmmakers and British actors, the organisation was set up by Emmanuel Anyiam-Osigwe and established as BUFF Enterprises Ltd.
Clare Anyiam-Osigwe : Writer, director and co-star of Romantic Drama ‘No Shade’ Feature Film. Director of ‘Windrush Stories’ short documentary released June 9 2018, Proud recipient of B.E.M, Queens honours list 2017
Multi Awarded Founder of Premae Skincare – the world’s 1st freeform beauty brand. CEO, leading the brand into 3 continents (UK, Africa and USA) and driving sales globally. Private practice at No.1 Harley Street specialising in Vegan Facials & Skin/Diet consultations
How to direct indie films with Simon Rumley who talks with Giles Alderson about how he made his latest feature films Fashionista, Crowhurst and Once Upon A Time in London.
And he tells us about his Hollywood experience making Johnny Frank Garret’s Last Stand and the dramas that surrounded the film.
How he met many influential and future collaborators on the festival circuits, the problems shooting on a small boat and making, going head to head with Colin Firth’s The Mercy and making a film that wasn’t script ready.
Simon’s feature film credits include: Club Le Monde, Strong Language, The Truth Game. The Living and the Dead, starring Roger Lloyd-Pack. Red White & Blue which starred Noah Taylor, Marc Senter and Amanda Fuller.
Segments in the features Little Deaths which starred Tom Sawyer and Kate Braithwaite, The ABCs of Death, produced by Tim League and 60 Seconds of Solitude in Year Zero
Johnny Frank Garret’s The Last Word starring Sean Patrick Flanery.
And the recently released Fashionista and
Crowhurst which is based on the tragic real-life story of amateur sailor Donald Crowhurst,
And recently filmed Once Upon a Time in London staring Geoff Bell, Lee Gregory, Terry Stone, Kate Braithwaite, Micheal McKell and Jamie Forman
Making ‘Of Gods and Warriors’ an Indie action adventure with director and screenwriter David LG Hughes.
He talks how he made the film, got the cast and got a cinematic release.
Joined by Giles Alderson and Christian James who talk about ‘Fanged Up’ being released on the 30th July and Giles’ new producing job on new feature film ‘Cassette’.
David LG Hughes is a screenwriter and director
After Film School, where he won a Fuji Film Scholarship for screenwriting, David began an award winning career in film advertising which allowed him to work directly with acclaimed directors including Darren Aronofsky, Roman Polanski and Guillermo Del Toro.
David’s short film, A GIRL AND A GUN, was released internationally on iTunes, becoming one of the best selling shorts ever. A Top Ten hit in every country it was released in – including the US – it spent over 2 years in the UK Top 20 download chart.
His first feature, HARD BOILED SWEETS, was made for just $60k. Bought by Universal and released theatrically in the UK it has secured distribution in the US, China, Germany, Latin America, Australia, the Middle East and many other territories.
His 2nd Feature ‘Of Gods and Warriors’ (AKA Vicking Destiny) is OUT on the 17th July and stars Terrance Stamp, Will Mellor, Martyn Ford and Anna Demetriou
Part 2 – Actor Timothy Spall & director Stephen Cookson talk acting, working on Harry Potter, directing tips and their new film Stanley A Man of Variety with Giles Alderson and Andrew Rodger
We talk with Stephen about finding the locations, Shooting black and white. The look and visuals of a feature film, VFX and the Editing process. Making his debut film My Angel where he brought in Timothy who made calls to bring on Brenda Blethyn and it snowballed from there
Learning not to give to many notes to actors & being very respectful of older actors and their ability to be the role. We discuss that if you want to be a director. Direct something see if you like it.
How the idea is the most important thing. No point spending years trying to make something of the idea is bad
We learn how Stephen met Star Wars director Irvin Kershner on the tube and asking him questions and advice which he duly gave.
Should we having agents as a director? Stephen gives a compelling argument regarding this.
Timothy talks about being in Harry Potter and being seduced by director Alphonso Cuaron to take the part. How being in a massive franchise like that is a blessing and a curse.
“Your either right for the part or you ain’t”
There is a difference between film stars and actors. Film stars can fit into wish-fulfillment roles. Character actors can fit it different roles”
Stanley A Man of Variety is OUT NOW at Picture House Cinema’s.
The wonderful and delightfully film investment savvy Peter Dunphy from Gizmo Film joins us to discuss film finance, how important your investors are not just at the beginning and How the feature film Funny Cow starring Maxine Peake, which is out now came to be.
How being an Exec Producer can have it’s perks but also it’s downfalls like having to sack actors but gives us the best way to do it.
We discuss his latest TV show Mad to be Normal starring David Tennant and Elizabeth Moss which is coming out soon
How he worked for business man James Caan and became an expert on tax which proved to be invaluable.
“Every film you are involved in you make big mistake and say I’m not going to doing that again. “
Mistakes are not seeing the route to market. You should be thinking about distribution and sales
“If you can’t get sales agent or distributor at the early stages. Get a new project”
We discuss the best way to move forward with a project when you just have a script.
We go into detail on SEIS, EIS and film tax relief
*note SEIS – 50% tax rebate for investors. Limit is 150k. Plus loss relief on top of that. So 75% is risk free.
EIS. Investors can raise up to 10mil per investor
And by getting advanced assurance. Allows you to give comfort to your investor.
Now the government want you to make a slate of films. Rather than one.
Film tax relief. If making a film in the UK you qualify up to 25% of film tax relief.
“Spend the money as if it was your own”
Surviving Christmas. Good cast, EIS advance assurance and UK tax credit in place. “The moment you get the the film wrapped you now have an asset, which the investors have a stake in.
We also discuss how to keep investors at bay or entertained.
Full of wisdom and knowledge about filmmaking from experienced directors and producers who have been there and done that and the fact ‘The Bromley Boys’ took seven years to get to the silver screen explains the hard work and dedication that went into it.
They debate about when to shout out that you are making films. Should you scream from the rooftops or keep it under wraps ? When is the best time to say I am making a film.
Wanting to prove yourself as a filmmaker. Do it as soon as possible
For director Steve Kelly how looking so young when he first started at ITV was a detriment. You need to learn to tell a story. One of the great ways to do this is to learn to edit.
They discuss how to not set your expectations too high on your first film and be realistic with what you can achieve and how you can only succeed by failing more than the person next to you.
We learn how Dean quit acting because he knew he was a better producer and how short films are the best way to learn how to make feature films and If you haven’t got the skill-set to write yourself find writers
How making The Bromley Boys was a testament to how well they worked together as if you are still speaking after trying to make a project after 7 years then you have done something right.
Getting the right team around you and collaborating well is vital. It should be a family and be happy to come to work.
They also give us invaluable advice for raising funds for films.
“You trip up once and the investor is out. They are looking for you to make a mistake” – Dean Fisher
They also discuss how to make a period film and the tricks to making it work. So how can you make it work? Shoot it in a 70’s style? Have a great costume and make design and art department is so important. Also you can paint our satellite dishes. But you can shoot in most places in London then shoot big close ups with a shallow depth of field.
Going for self distribution as got P&A spend on the Bromley Boys. Having the right strategy for the film. If they don’t get with a major studio they decided they should distribute this themselves. Make sure you get a theatrical booker and experts in poster deign and trailer producing and how word of mouth is huge.
Why releasing a film yourself can be very worthwhile. Just get the best people around you. It’s the same as when you are making the film
Or how to go from being a Assistant Director to directing your own feature film. Giles Alderson (The Dare) and Christian James (Fanged Up) chat with director Daniel Jerome Gill about going from an AD on many big movies to turning his award winning rom-com short of Modern Life is Rubbish into a feature film.
After University and his gap year Daniel made a pact to make it in the film industry and sent 100s of emails our to productions companies asking for a job. He got a few responses but that is all he needed to start work as a runner
To get a AD job with need perseverance. First job taking rushes at end of night. Making Teas. Doing a few unpaid short films you will eventually meet somebody who can take your career to the next level.
First paid job on the worst film ‘Sex Lives of the Potato Men’ then that team brought him in on Matthew Vaughn’s Layer Cake.
Standing by monitor on Danny Boyle’s Sunshine and he learnt loads. And then started make short films from the crew he had met. He made Modern Life is Rubbish as a short film with no intention of making a feature, He got camera kit for free, begged borrowed and stole. Amazing how many people will help you.
He tells us how he got actor Rafe Spall into that short film. “Fortune favours the bold and you have to brave and ask”.
Learning while working as an AD from successful directors. The main lesson he learnt was planning. Plan your shots. But be able to adapt.
How to turn to short film into a feature.
After getting into the Cannes short film corner. Mapped it out with the writer Phillip Gawthorne. Then after the success of the short he got an agent (42 Management) who sent the feature off and Universal liked it. Eventually he attached producer Dom Norris who raised the remaining funding to match Universal. How having a sales agent on board helps your investor to think it is real.
He tells us while working as crowd AD on The Crown he got the call saying his feature was happening and he had to leave.
How he shot the feature in 55 locations in 5 weeks
How it is important to trim down scenes in the edit. If they didn’t move the story forward you have to loose it. Lost 20 mins.
Getting the incredible music/score and how he cast the names who are in his film.
This film has opened loads of doors. Signed with CAA in America.
Advice: Bang on people’s doors and make a movie or short.
Modern Life is Rubbish is on at Picture House cinema now and can be purchased on line.
Short Film: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=60DZBoK1QhU
Buy the feature: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Modern-Life-Rubbish-Freya-Mavor/dp/B07BF5TH63
Host Giles Alderson (The Dare) heads to the the London Independent Film Festival and chats to the filmmakers attending including the team behind Winter Ridge, Dom Lenoir, Matt Hookings, Michael McKell, Hannah Waddingham, Alistair Ager and Ian Pirie as well as filmmakers and actors Jon Campling, Simeon Willis, Toby Osmond, Ben Richards, Andromeda Godfrey, the team behind short film Stationary and the festival director Natasha Marberger.
NEW WINTER RIDGE TRAILER https://vimeo.com/267988064
The festival director Natasha Marberger tells us that to get selected film entrants just need good stories.
Stars of Winter Ridge Hannah Waddingham and Michael McKell talk about getting into film for the right reasons their approach to scripts on what parts they get to play. How when acting try and lock in so you ignore the producing side of things.
Some of the really good directors have been actors. Least direction was Robert Zemekis
Producer and actor Andromeda Godfrey discusses finding someone you want to work with and make it happen. It can be a lonely business so find people you want to work with. Believe in your project and yourself.
“Producing is putting out fires. Or even better not letting the fire start in the first place”
We chat to the team behind the short film Stationary and how a good team that works together well is very important and the main issues of being tight for time. Know your project well and submit to the right festivals. Being realistic makes you have a better chance.
We talked to Little Shit director Richard Gorodecky and Philip Ilson, the London short film festival director who looks for films with a voice
Actor and director Simeon Willis is now writing a screenplay after being inspired by the podcast and how he directed a film for the 48hr film challenge.
Actor and producer Toby Osmond on how he does it “I’m just a doer. I like starting stuff”.
Actor of Winter Ridge Ian Pirie on making Bond film, Die Another Day, how director Lee Tamahori brought rawness and thought on his feet. Bringing indie film process to a huge budget. Working with Christopher Nolan on The Dark Night and getting advice on his frst ever film. A little know Scorsese piece called Gangs of New York.
Jon Campling talks about the difference between shooting an indie film and shooting Harry Potter . The huge machine behind a huge film and everything serves the actor. Indie film is a collaboration between everyone working on it.
Winter Ridge script editor (and screenwriter) Alistair Ager chats about the process of script writing and being a script editor. “You can be a fresh pair of eyes and you can spot things that the writer didn’t”. How he looks for character arcs or plot points that aren’t needed and too much dialogue.
And Dom Lenoir and Matt Hookings make a little appearance too.
Screenwriter and Producer Guy J Jackson and stars of the movie Arielle Brachfeld and Ashley Park join Giles Alderson (The Dare) to talk about their new indie noir thriller LA Overnight
How Arielle jumped into the indie world by making Return of the Ghostbusters – A Ghostbusters fan film and her second written feature Chemical Peel and how LA is often not very welcoming to filmmakers but it does have a base and group of people who will help out to make indie films but with technology around now there is no excuse not to make a film.
Ashley has also recently produced the film Surviving Theatre 9 which is out soon and how it differs from being just an actress. “It’s so useful as an actress to also produce. You will never complain again. You get used to everything, nothing fazes you. It’s a really great learning experience”
Arielle found out she was auditioning for the lead role in LA Overnight at the read through and how she brought in lead actor Azim Rizk.
As the screenwriter and producer, Guy talks about getting a job by writing good emails. How tough Hollywood is. Michael Chrisoulakis, the director gave have a chance. But gave him boundaries to go with it and How Noir has pitter patter style to it’s dialogue and their work to get the script as strong as it can be.
Ho they cast Hollywood names Lin Shay (Insidious) and Peter Bogdanovich (The Last Picture Show).
How to Film in LA. People will try and get money by playing the radio loudly and will want money for them to go away. Avoiding permits but getting insurance is key. “If you’re a dude with a camera and another dude with a mic no one usually bothers you. Just make sure you have insurance”.
Shooting with a drone. Was so nervous you might be arrested. But director Micheal saw LA through a foreigners eyes and saw the beauty.
How they shot for nine months, shooting on weekends.
How you become Battle Buddies from your time on set and how you can be so proud of a film and proud of your co-stars and team
The secret is… getting someone else’s money
Watch the film https://www.amazon.co.uk/Los-Angeles-Overnight-Arielle-Brachfeld/dp/B079KHK1TF
Director Mark AC Brown and actor David Whitney talk about how they made their new quite brilliant indie film Guardians.
How Mark made a film for his degree but it was a great experiment and not to be seen again. How he wrote a feature script for Nu Image but the ‘Expendables’ ruined it and how it is best to write something to make yourself for free or on a micro budget. What do have available to you ?
How when making an indie film, continuity is not as important as the story. How the establishing scene of a character is so important. But don’t waste time on drone shots. Then get the most amount of permissions you can get. And if not shoot anyway
Suzanne Smith – their DoP was a runner on a Brainehound (their production company) short and worked her way up. Made short film Beard with David and Mark and proved herself as a brilliant DoP and How having great all rounders like Fred Fournier and Joe Starrs as editor and 1st AD respectively is vital as is keeping your ‘team’ from your shorts/music videos and bringing them with you.
With low budget you have to juggle and Workaround people schedules and how ‘Withnails’ – Richard E Grant’s marvelous book was an inspiration (and The Wah Wah Diaries)
When you are supposed to be doing he scene in 4 shots but end up doing it in one but it’s one of the best moments in the film so don’t have to stick to your shot lists.
Tried to plan it but played the moment when it came to it.
Why post can take so long when you are asking for favours on a micro budget film
How they learned from other filmmakers and how they distributed their films – Ben Cookson, Fizz and Ginger’s Two Down and James Rumsey’s Drunk on love.
Mark wanted to have a cinema run so choose Our Screen to have a theatrical release. Then the release got extended as it sold out for the second night.
And how they opened a festival in a double bill with recent horror film IT.
The Film: http://www.guardiansfilm.co.uk/
Mark AC Brown http://www.markacbrown.com/ Twitter : https://twitter.com/Brainehowndfilm
David Whitney http://www.davidwhitney.org/ Twitter: https://twitter.com/DWhitney
www.TheFilmmakersPodcast.com T: @filmmakerspod
Giles Alderson www.directedbygiles T: @gilesalderson