At the start of the second year at school, we started nearly straight away to brainstorm the main movies we would direct at one point or another during the year. Due to my specialization, I had to oversee numerous projects as a producer and it was really tricky for me to find time and energy for an idea. I got a few of them I kind of liked, but I felt it wasn’t the right time for any of them.
That’s when I remembered an advice given by one of our script writing teachers: your idea has to come from the guts. You are gonna spend months working on that idea, so you better be passionate about it. I sat down, looked at all the random words written in my notebook in the past few days and dove into the deepest parts of my mind.
I thought about how people get polarized so fast on the Internet nowadays and how there is often barely room for discussion between different opinions. I started to imagine what would happen if that kind of environment was applied to a core aspect of humanity for many centuries : love.
The next day or so, I showed in front of the class a poorly designed, untitled and very short slide presentation and started to talk about that strange world and its main character. The Other Side was born.
For reasons external to the project, my crew was assembled pretty late in pre-production. Until a few weeks before production, I only had one crew member : my editor. I was also the last student in my intake to shoot his film, and everyone was exhausted by months of filmmaking work.
My first blessing came when the person who would become my cinematographer decided – to my great surprise – to join the project after reading my script. Had he not accepted, the movie would most probably never have happened.
My second blessing came from the main cast: they were intrigued by the script from the start, had a good grasp on the storyworld and were eager to add their own contributions to shape this universe.
The combined amount of locations, costumes, props and extras that would help create this world required two full time production designers. It was a huge task for them.
This project definitely felt like a different scale than the previous ones.
Knowing that this movie nearly never happened, it’s even more rewarding to see the quality of the result.
Having my lead actress won the best performance award at the school festival made me really proud for her especially since there was a quality competition on the acting level at that festival.
The film also ended up being selected for four international film festivals as well as a renowned short film website. As a traveler, I fondly love the idea of this movie going around the world and being discovered by new audiences! 🙂