Filmmaker Spotlight.


Behind the Scenes of Hoax

Give us a quick update on what you are working on now? Any upcoming projects or teasers?

We’ve currently got three films on the festival trail. The Yowie and We are all Snakes are two doco shorts that played at Emerge last year, as well as our new film Hoax from writer/director Charles Olsen. Hoax is a fascinating short based on the true story of an Australian environmental activist who creates a fake press release to protest a controversial coal mine, leading to some very unexpected consequences.

In post-production we have a film called The Flight of the L.A.D, which is top secret (due to the UFO). (Oh shit, we shouldn’t have mentioned the UFO). (Oh f*#k, we shouldn’t have said shit).

We’re also working on a few scripts, and have commenced shooting on a feature documentary.

Have you come across anything new in filmmaking you want to share? Any new technologies, resources, sites etc.

We’ve gone back to the future a bit in shooting on 16mm glass. It’s cheap to hire in Australia, no one uses it and it looks great. We shot The Yowie on an old 16mm film lens Canon 11-138mm cinema zoom. We’re looking to shoot an upcoming short on 16mm cinema primes, preferably also on 16mm film but Sam E won’t let us (some B.S about a budget).

What is your favorite season (weather) to shoot in?

Our philosophy is that we’d rather spend a Saturday on set than hungover on the couch (hungover on set is also acceptable). Accordingly, we shoot quite frequently and have to take the weather as we get it. We often repeat the old mantra “if you wanted rain you couldn’t afford it” so find creative ways to make the conditions work. In The Yowie for instance we shot in pouring rain, thick fog and freezing winds, which were awful conditions but looked amazing.

In saying that, we have been extremely fortunate to date so we think the human sacrifices have been working.

What has been your favorite location for a project?

We filmed much of Hoax in the beautiful Hunter Valley on the east coast of Australia. The entire cast and crew went bush for a weekend and we built a whole protest camp in the middle of the forest. It was a perfect location and our down time was spent eating by picturesque rivers and drinking under the stars around a camp fire. Downside of that was the snakes, spiders, and leeches that sometimes dropped in for their breakout role.

Have you ever made an appearance in your own film?

We often find ways to put friends and family in films (free extras!), and actually have a few repeat gags for returning extras that are nice background jokes we enjoy, however usually don’t put ourselves in. Although Sam E had a big scene in Hoax as a broker which was eventually cut- he’s still quite upset about it really.

Sam H’s voice tends to end up in the documentaries asking questions, and Gavin’s nearly did for L.A.D but we dubbed it over just to annoy him.

Who is your favorite Director (aside from yourself)?

Tommy Wizzeau. Haha no.

What is your favorite genre of Film?

Collectively we form a fairly eclectic taste. We do have a real passion for shorts as their own medium- many features these days are great shorts overindulged with cash. So we tend to care less about genre and more about story, notwithstanding the duration.

What advice do you give to up-and-coming indie filmmakers?

Make lots of stuff and have fun doing it.

Some of your favorite film festivals you’ve attended?


Also had some great times at Arizona IFF, and Newport Beach IFF in the USA. The Richard Harris IFF in Limerick, Ireland is an amazing festival to attend. In Australia, Revelation Perth International Film Festival, Melbourne Documentary FF, Sydney Indie FF, Canberra Short FF, and Byron Bay IFF have been really good to us.

The great fests support their local filmmakers, and bring in international creatives so that everyone can share in the showcasing of films, but also the community. A fest is often a reflection of the wonderfully unique people and community involved, and has its own character. Which is part of the reason we love Emerge, and partying with all the Maine-iacs!

Check out the latest from Aussie filmmakers Sam H., Sam E. and Gav from Must Go Faster Films and keep up to date on their upcoming projects.

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