If you think actors are difficult to work with ... try cows
Director Guy Édoin had to build a manure deflector to protect his cameras while filming his first feature film, Wetlands.
He was filming the drama on his parents’ dairy farm in Quebec’s Eastern Townships and an important part of the story involved a cow giving birth.
With a crew of 12 and 40 bovines in the barn, it was pretty close quarters, he told a TIFF panel discussion Thursday that featured first time directors on six films primed for release.
“We made a s*** deflector,” he told the laughing audience, “It’s true and it was a great experience for everybody.”
Anne Émond, whose film Nuit#1 was shot over 20 nights with two actors in a small apartment, replied, “We didn’t haven any animals, just two humans. But people are hard, not just cows.
“We had hard scenes, lots of nudity, lots of long conversations. It’s another kind of challenge.”
Riverdale residents Yonah Lewis, 25, and 24-year-old Calvin Thomas’s coming-of-age film Amy George was shot entirely in their backyards, lanes and nearby Withrow and Riverdale Parks. Once shooting began, Lewis realized that he had many scenes “of kids climbing trees” which were difficult to stage and shoot. The two directors also wrote and filmed the movie after arriving at the conclusion the common experience they both had and which they wanted to put on screen was “adolescence”.
It took 15 years and a volley of letters to imprisoned bank robber Edwin Boyd before Nathan Morlando’s dream became a movie starring well-known actor Scott Speedman. The long labour of love became “an obsession”, he admits, and one that he is only now ready to let go now that Edwin Boyd is ready for theatres. He urged young directors to be persistent and to find a good producer. The session was sponsored by Telefilm Canada which had provided some assistance to all of the directors.