An exhausted, sleep deprived mother, must get the bin out on collection day. Since this film was broadcast on our platform it has gone viral.
Interview with Writer/Director Karen Ingram
Congratulations! Why did you decide to make this film?
I'd written the script as an assignment in a creative writing subject at Victoria University. The task was to write a physical narrative loosely based upon personal experience. Over two weeks I read two drafts to my class-mates and they really got it, both times! One of them was a film-maker and she approached me to make the film and I was stunned. She was serious. I gave her plenty of outs but she wanted to do it and the ball got rolling.
Soon after the Big West Festival put a call out for works that fit in with their them for 2015 – Inside and Outside the Home so I took that as an encouraging sign and submitted my script with the intention of filming in coming months to meet the deadlines.
As it got close to crunch time my talented film-maker scored a scholarship to Berlin and I was left a little in the lurch. The festival producers were checking on my progress and I had a minor flip-out so I turned to Facebook and expressed my dilemma, pretty much putting it out there to see if any of my friends wanted to play with me. And they did!
Why is the film called The Bin? Is it a specific or universal story?
The name was there from the first draft and even though I tried changing it at a few key milestones of editing, submission, filming and post-production I couldn't shake it. “The bin” are two words that go through everyone's mind, sometimes coming out of their mouths, every week when they realise it's time to put out the garbage bin. In that sense it's a scenario which most people can relate with. I know I'm not the only one who's forgotten to put the bin out.
Is this story autobiographical?
Let's say it's semi-autobiographical. The story of Lilith could have very well happened to me, especially in those early months with a new-born baby, muddling through in a bit of a daze, the endless clutter and washing and nappies and feeding and grabbing sleep here and there while trying to retain some semblance of my former self.
What type of feedback have you received so far?
It's been really positive for which I'm very grateful. The story does resonate, even though it reaches a ridiculous climax, I've heard from many women in particular, how much they relate to it. People have laughed or at least smiled broadly.
It's been mentioned to me it seems like the story is just beginning just as the film ends or that it could be a trailer for a bigger film. A couple of people have suggested I keep writing more stories of encounters between residents and the garbage collectors. There's certainly a lot of material there.
Has the feedback surprised or challenged your point of view?
The most surprising feedback was from a group of visitors from the Solomon Islands who I met just after it was shown at the Big West Festival. They really loved it. I was a little concerned that the nudie-bits could have caused offence but they just laughed.
They were doing some research with City of Maribyrnong on waste removal, taking some ideas back to the Solomons and they asked me for a copy of the film to show their community. I was amazed and really excited by their response. Of course I agreed, never in a million years expecting my little film would get an audience in the Solomon Islands.
What are you looking to achieve by having your film more visible on this platform?
I'm really excited to be putting forward some lesser known images of Melbourne's western suburbs and perspectives of the lives of women. Funny and remarkable things happen amidst the seemingly mundane and I'd like audiences to identify some of their own lives in the telling of this little story, or that of people they know or have seen. It's affirming.
I'd like to see how far it can reach and to receive some feedback and interest that may propel my next project, or the one after that.
Who do you need to come on board (producers, sales agents, buyers, distributors, film festival directors, journalists) to amplify the message of this film?
It would be fantastic to hear from anyone who could facilitate a wider distribution whether online or in film festivals. I have a truck-load of ideas that could be of interest to producers and wouldn't discount the possibility of re-shooting (with extra trimmings) as part of a bigger story.
What type of impact would you like this film to have?
I just want people to see it, have a laugh, identify with it, appreciating the experiences of sleep-deprived mothers and that of our conscientious garbage truck drivers who love their jobs and that knowledge that the unexpected can be just around the corner. I'd also love the music of The Rebelles to reach out to as many people as possible. Here He Comes was such a timely find, I just love it. www.rebelles.com.au
What’s a key question that will help spark a debate about this film?
Why did it only rain when Lilith was taking out the bin?
What other films are you developing or directing now?
I've started work on a documentary which unpacks some of the stories and happenings of the alternative/punk rock scene of Newcastle in the early 1980s.
I have a dozen or so interviews complete and collecting some archival images and audio. It will tell a unique and lesser-known social history of a city which has always identified strongly with beach culture and heavy industry and a scene which was pushed against the mainstream.
There's another project I'm working on which is a creative memoir in which a dream sequence is cinematic in scope and context – whether it makes it from the page to the screen remains to be seen.
Is there anything else you’d like to add?
The Bin is my debut film and I've learned so much from the whole experience. One thing just led to another, the words fell out of me onto the page, the film was being made without trying terribly hard (thanks to Frank Perri and Sally-Anne Wilson) and it's had a couple of public screenings thanks to living in a vibrant and supportive artistic community in Melbourne's inner-west.
I can't say it was the film I had to make or that I just couldn't wait to tell this story. I have plenty of other stories ready to burst forth so I'm hopeful The Bin is a beginning and not an end.
Interview: April 2016
We Are Moving Stories embraces new voices in drama, documentary, animation, TV, web series and music video. If you have just made a film - we'd love to hear from you. Or if you know a filmmaker - can you recommend us? More info: Carmela
Length: 5 minutes, 51 seconds
Writer: Karen Ingram
Director: Karen Ingram
Producer: Karen Ingram, Ojoy Productions firstname.lastname@example.org
About the director: Film-making is the latest feather in the boa for first-time director Karen Ingram. She is committed to honestly funny and relateable story-telling from Australian women.
Looking for distributor, producer, film-festival director, media interest