Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Becoming a Film Maker - Part 1

Barker PODcasts:
“That’s what I want to do!…..”
As a young boy I always wanted to make Films, Not Movies, Films!
What’s the difference I hear you ask, well truthfully I don’t know, I just prefer the term Film over Movies. When I hear the word Film I automatically see a narrative driven, classy looking, classical feel film. When I hear Movies, I see lots of explosions, hardly any dialogue and basic story. I may be reading wrong, but thats how I feel.
Anyway, why did I want to make Films? Well, since a young age I have always watched films, I had VHS’s coming out of my ears! I loved getting blank tapes and recording films off the TV and making my own cases for them. I was that kid that would rather stay inside watching “Beetlejuice” than go outside playing football. It’s probably a reason why I’m always struggling to stay thin, I’d rather watch a film with a gym in it, than go to the gym.
For years I always found the film making process interesting. Ask anybody from my childhood and they will tell you I was like a Cinematic Rain Man. Drop a film title and I’d tell you the Director, Actors, Rating, Release Date, Synopsis, Key Grip, Location scout etc. I was a film geek with autism for sure. Half the films I were talking about I hadn’t even seen! But I was quick enough to find out about it all.
For years I would grab a video camera from my Grandparents and annoy the hell out of them by constantly having it attached to my hand. I would film random things from a dog sleeping, A view in the distance to motion shot Jaffa cakes that disappeared bite by bite. I thought of myself as a right Steven Speilberg. I thought I could make it!
I would then get my friends to make moving puppet style films. Considering I’d never done it before, we were able to make stop motion figure films. Of course it was all juvenile and about farting, but still it was creative. I felt like a film maker.
I spent my formative years as a teenage boy watching films and writing scripts. I wrote several horror/slasher scripts after watching “Scream”
I remember writing such classics as “Scared Stiff” – A Slasher about a killer in a high School amongst friends ( So basically Scream )
“I know what you did” – A farmer attacks Teens after they think they’ve killed him with an Apple ( Seriously, I wrote that! )
“Halloween 8 – The Redemption of Micheal Myers” – A sequel to H20 set in England ( I was young alright! )
“Death Game” – A video game that causes the player to commit suicide ( which I quite liked )
For years these were my life. It wasn’t until I went to college studying Film and Media that I started honing my craft in writing a narrative driven story. Before College I was always writing with other films in mind. I didn’t have original ideas. I was writing DTV movies infact.
Just before College I had this idea for a screenplay about a group of teens and the consequence of their actions. This started off as “FOURTEEN Days”
“FOURTEEN Days” started off as a Pulp Fiction meets Go meets Short Cuts meets Magnolia type of story. Obviously I based the idea on separate stories that connected or overlapped. I spent nye on 10 years writing, rewriting, rewriting and rewriting the screenplay. I finished the 4th Draft in 2009! And I’m currently rewriting it now.
The time I spent working on the story the more I learnt how to write and create a narrative that flows and how to write characters. At College, where I spent most of the time drinking in the pub, I was able to start making films again. Being around people who wanted to make films too was refreshing, as my constant camera in their face didn’t irritate them. After shooting little projects like adverts for assignments, I was finally able to make a short thriller film for my final piece. That short was “The Guilt”
You can watch it here at YouTube:
The idea was to show off my ideology of camera shots, editing and narrative flow without being pretentious like a lot of my class mates were. It paid off I had made a short film to be proud of, I was going to make it as a Film Maker. This was the starting block. I had a script in the works, a short film to my name and youthful enthusiasm. What could go wrong?
7 Years Later…………………..


  1. My classmates used to call me the human tv guide. Though I didn't want to make films, I wanted to star in them. I wrote my own plays. Now I am a mom and "act" like a responsible adult every day.

    1. HAHA I loved to dream as a kid, but im still a firm believer of being able to do what u want in life :)