SELFIE is the story of two vacationers, Ronnie and Bijanka, both dying to start their summer holiday but not before realising just how different they really are. What began as a harmless selfie triggers a blow-up on the beach #awks.
– By Porteus Xandau
SURRENDER | a case study in “NO INPUT PLEASE”
In discussing this film, SURRENDER, I’ll start off by professing that ever since I was a young boy I wanted to tell stories that come from the heart and make films that change the world. That being said, I’d also prefer you don’t choke on all that cheesy sentiment. So, let me cut to the chase….
So far, the response to SURRENDER has been nothing but positive, in fact, overwhelmingly so. Of course, I’m super stoked about this, but why has the reaction been so positive? Is it because I’m a genius filmmaker? Ha, I wish! I think the reason the film resonated with so many people was because Milton shared his life’s story in a way that was honest and open. That’s it. His no bullshit narrative provided such a powerful foundation that I found myself having to get out of the way so the story could tell itself. No clever techniques, no smoke and mirrors. Just storytelling laid bare. Unrefined. Raw.
Throughout my career as a director, I’ve witnessed the opposite over and over again. It’s like, the more people you have giving directional input on a film, the more the project starts to ‘unbecome’. The same can be said for commercials, long-form films and documentaries. I’ve seen brilliant concepts and stories utterly destroyed by too many people forcing their ideas, believing it’ll improve the final product. Spoiler alert; it doesn’t.
Now, I’m not hanging up a sign that screams “NO INPUT PLEASE” because filmmaking is a collaborative process. But I am saying that the key to making something authentic, something that comes from the heart and really hits home is more likely to happen when you safeguard the soul of a particular piece by restricting all the two cents that come flying at you from all angles.
I’m not sure how I’ll ever be able to fight this ‘creative committees’ monster without getting fired or being labelled a dick, but I’ll let you know when I do.
– By Porteus Xandau