Writer/Director Will Jewell first showed me a version of this screenplay seven or eight years ago. In the intervening years, he’s kept returning to it, and he’s kept refining it. It was one of those ones that wouldn’t go away, it kept nagging at him like an itch. In the intervening years he’s made shorts, including the award-winning Man In Fear which I cut for him. Now that feature script that was so long in development has finally been funded, cast, and shot. Postproduction has begun! The first assembly was impressively solid - the thriller elements are working well, and are suitably heartrate-raising.
Now comes the slow process of refining and improving, and discovering those little moments none of us knew were there.
THE LONGEST SUMMER IN AMERICA
This was a very interesting project. The twelve-member band Brockhampton have had an amazing year - big performances at Coachella, getting signed to a major label for an eight-figure sum, making an album at Abbey Road - but also a painful year. One of their members was accused of sexual misconduct by fans, and it almost ended the group. These guys got through it, then decided to make a feature-length film about their year.
I came in late during an extremely rushed edit process, being conducted by the band’s confidante Kevin Doan. Was I there to advise, to edit, or what? Holed up in a London hotel, we just made it up as we went. Even though he had no experience of anything like this, I found Kevin to be a sharp, sensitive and relaxed guy who had excellent instincts. I was able to help in the crafting of the narrative flow, the structure, and the pacing. I worked directly on a few scenes, but mainly my input was in the subtleties of long-arc storytelling, and of guiding an audience through the experience of the film as a whole.
Throughout, the humanity and honesty of all these Brockhampton guys impressed me a lot. Even though I knew nothing about their music scene going in, it was abundantly clear why they’ve gathered such a huge and loyal following.
This breezy and fun horror feature recently premiered at FrightFest to gasps, chuckles, and some healthy reviews. I didn’t edit this one, instead I was brought on during pre-production to help with the screenplay. I gave notes, and talked at length with the writer Luke Foster and director Bernard Pucher, to make sure their project was going to work as well as it could. Amongst the many things we looked at, I’m particularly happy with what we added to the protagonist’s story. I think Luke, Bernard and their team did a great job bringing their ideas to the screen.
Ravers at IMDB.
We're currently in post on this film which poses a new challenge for me - it's half in Greek, a language I don't speak. Writer-Director Alkin Emirali has crafted a charming, meaningful look at how pain long in the past affects our choices.
This film is the brainchild of multi-hyphenate Glad Moss, and is an unflinching look at a very tough subject. Glad is a young director who has both strong ideas and a willingness to collaborate - a killer combination. This is one of those chamber piece films, a two-hander, and the performances of our two leads are well showcased by Glad's writing.
This is a dreamy and sexually charged exploration of beauty, and of how we're seen and want to be seen.
The film has premiered as part of the Official Selection at the Nashville Film Festival. Check out the film's progress here.
MNEK - AT NIGHT
This was a late phonecall. A late phonecall from Greatcoat Films not only offering a job, but also qualifying that it might be tricky... As with a lot of promos, the director had excited the label with an ambitious and fresh pitch, he had connected with the artist and excited them, but then didn't have the resources to easily achieve his vision. The first editor had been struggling with the way the job was half edit and half VFX composite, and I don't blame her. The Motion Control rig hadn't behaved, the time had run out... from what I heard the shoot was full of all the usual fun and games that remind me why I stay in my comfy post-production chair.
But the director is a real talent, and great cutting-room company, so in I plunged. The task at first was trying to get the flow of the piece working, whilst coping with the jigsaw-puzzle system that had been created by the director's conceit of an infinitely tracking camera. Then came the input from the man himself, MNEK. Uzo (as he introduced himself) is a very sharp fellow with a sensitive, artistic eye. He knew what he wanted, and unusually for a young man in his position showed both warmth and focussed professionalism. Couple that with his astonishing success (a quarter of a billion Youtube views, a track on Beyonce's new album) plus the fact this is a damned good track, you end up with someone you want to please. Hopefully we did.
The director's conceit of an endlessly tracking camera didn't make it completely intact to the final edit, but with Toby at Cheat grading the deep, rich photography, and consistent effort in the edit, we ended up with something rather lovely.