Falmouth students take final projects to Cannes
Seeing your film on the big screen is what every aspiring director and film maker hopes and works for. Four students from University College Falmouth were brought a little closer to this goal when being accepted into the Real Ideas Studio Inc. programme, giving them the chance to go and take their work to the 2012 Festival de Cannes.
The annual film festival witnesses representation of industry professionals from around the world, showcasing new films and celebrating cinema at an international level.
Writer and producer Kamilla Hodøl and director James Harris, both fresh film graduates from University College Falmouth entered their film Norah Smile into the short film corner of the festival.
“It’s the perfect place to get more interest in the film,” says James. “It seems the entire worldwide film industry has representation there, and so it’s a perfect opportunity to meet other filmmakers, learn, and find future opportunities, with the film as a calling card.”
Norah Smile is a 10-minute short drama, set in the future about a woman called Norah, who is the perfect wife, girlfriend and mother in front of the camera for her clients. She is putting on a different mask for everyday life situations and people in order to navigate through a society in which image and reputation becomes increasingly more essential. She is living with a facade to feel superior and strong in a fake world.
It took the story three solid years to develop into a motion picture on screen and that certainly did not happen without the help of numerous people; a mix of students, graduates and industry professionals all worked hard on making Norah Smile. “I’m proud of the work, skill and passion the entire team put in, which is evident in the final film,” says James.
Produced by Kamilla’s recently established production company NonPop Productions Ltd., the shoot took place in London earlier this year and post- production was mostly done at Whitehouse Post in London until the project was finally completed last month.
The film itself did quite well in attracting viewers at Cannes and showed a considerable number of views at the end of the fortnight. “We filled our small screening room for our exhibition screening,” says James. However as it is the case with most things, it’s not how many see it, but who sees it. Kamilla has a number of meetings about the film to come in London, and James also has a few meetings about future projects off the back of it. Cannes was a perfect platform for getting the film out there and start building those vital business connections.
Norah Smile will be shown at several other national and international film festivals this year and in 2013. BFI London Film Festival, Sundance Festival and Berlin International Film Festival are only a few on the list of future showcases. ”The film has probably a years lifespan in festivals so this is just the start hopefully,” says James.
Norah Smile is also one of James’ final projects to be handed in before ultimately finishing his BA Film degree at Falmouth University.
Getting your work out there and showcasing it wherever possible, basically escaping the bubble that is University and education is essential while trying to get established in an industry like Film. “I’ve learned so much from putting myself onto a stage such as Cannes and from all the feedback we got there,” says James.
Mike Daye, graduate of 2011 also went to Cannes with the Real Ideas Studio Inc. programme to show his short film Aldila as did Thomas Brun with his film A Clearwater revival.