The Good, The Bad and the Inflatable
Interview with Director Stuart Bowen
Congratulations! Why did you make your film?
We made our film for Tropfest, which is an outdoor short film festival in Sydney. This is a festival both the writer Nick Russell and I went to every year, so we tailored the whole idea to be the perfect film we’d want to see in that context: 80,000 people, summer, outdoor venue, picnic, alcohol and friends. It rained the whole time ‘Twisted’ screened by the way - but we came third, which was grand.
Imagine I’m a member of the audience. Why should I watch this film?
We wanted to have fun making this short film, and we wanted that fun to translate to an audience - so you should watch this wanting to be entertained (in a fun way).
How do personal and universal themes work in your film?
This story simplistically shines a light on those moments where you stand up for yourself and what you want…where you might not have before. Setting this against the backdrop of a high school reunion, it’s that universal wish fulfillment of getting one-up on your school tormentor.
How have the script and film evolved over the course of their development and production?
With film making (and especially short film making), so much of the context of what you can do is down to money, and we landed on the idea of it being set in a high school gym because it was a contained environment which still had scope. At one stage it was set in a circus and the characters were competing clowns…big tops are expensive.
What type of feedback have you received so far?
We’ve had a heap of great feedback - especially for the balloon art which was created by Matt Falloon, a Sydney-based balloon artist. This was never a particularly provoking subject matter, and the whole idea of the short was to be a good time - which seems on the most part to have been successful.
Has the feedback surprised or challenged your point of view?
Not really…though we do end up hearing about a surprising amount of bucks/hens nights where penis balloon art is a big feature. We decided against have a penis shaped balloon creation in the short film…despite it originally seeming like a necessity.
What are you looking to achieve by having your film more visible on www.wearemovingstories.com?
Making short films is hard - and any platform for it to get out there and be seen and discussed is awesome. This was a might undertaking by a small group of very talented people who put a lot of effort in making this, and I love that its now being seen by people all over the world.
Who do you need to come on board (producers, sales agents, buyers, distributors, film festival directors, journalists) to amplify this film’s message?
We had a great launch at Tropfest, and it’s played in about 20 festivals around the world. Now I just want as many people to see it and be entertained as possible. It’s available on Youtube on the Tropfest account and continues to screen at festivals.
What type of impact and/or reception would you like this film to have?
Millions of views and ecstatic applause every time…not asking for much.
What’s a key question that will help spark a debate or begin a conversation about this film?
When is a time you regret not fighting for something you wanted?
Would you like to add anything else?
If you can’t check out the film at the festival - check it out online: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BiEzZVqx_2g
What are the key creatives developing or working on now?
I’m developing two more shorts and looking for the first feature idea whilst trying to establish myself as a commercials director. Nicholas Russell, the writer, is developing a heap of projects and works at Disney Animation. Jodi Matterson, the producer, has just released her fourth feature film in Australia called ‘Down Under’. Lachlan Milne, the director of photography, shot the Sundance selected feature ‘Hunt For The Wilder People’ which has smashed records in its home-town New Zealand.
Interview: September 2016
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The Good, The Bad and the Inflatable
About the writer, director and producer:
Stuart Bowen (Director)
Stuart is a Communications and Music graduate who started a career in editing after making 'fake' trailers for Baz Luhrmann’s Australia. This landed him a job at Bazmark, editing mood reels and other works for Luhrmann himself as well as George Miller and Nash Edgerton, among others. Stuart works closely with commercials director Michael Gracey and has edited campaigns for many large Australian and international companies. His first short film, Woody, won Best Animation at Seattle international Film Festival. Twisted is Stuart’s first (but hopefully not last) live action short film.
Steen Raskopoulos, Kathryn Beck, Andrew Steel
Dec 7 2014