Their stories. Their voices. Their words.
Interview with Writer/Director/Producer Mark Harwood
Main image: Doro Pesch performing in Germany
Congratulations! Why did you make your film?
I made the film because I found a story that fascinated me and wanted to know more. As I looked into it more, it seemed like there were lots of films about metal and of course lots of films about women, but nothing specifically on the intersection of the two. So I made one.
Imagine I’m a member of the audience. Why should I watch this film?
The film should appeal to anyone who's ever had a crazy dream that they wanted to pursue, whether male or female. It's really the story of the artist's journey; what drives people to create art, and how some people found success along that road.
How do personal and universal themes work in your film?
The film works on different levels. Fans of the featured artists will of course enjoy the chance to see and hear more from their favorite artists and learn a bit about how they got where they are today. But even if you've never heard of these women, the theme of striving to achieve a dream is universally relatable. No matter what you're doing, some combination of skill, hard work, luck and practice are involved.
How have the script and film evolved over the course of their development?
As a documentary, you never quite know what you're going to get when it comes to filming. You start out thinking the story is one thing and frequently it evolves in directions you hadn't anticipated. In this case, I was fortunate that not much changed from the original idea apart from some structural changes. I had planned to follow two specific artists, but one of them elected not to participate and that changed how the story was told.
What type of feedback have you received so far?
The feedback has been generally positive about the film and the themes. It premiered at the FemME festival in the Netherlands and I got the opportunity to speak to some audience members afterwards who were very moved by it, which was very rewarding.
Has the feedback surprised or challenged your point of view?
In some ways. I decided fairly early on that this wasn't going to just be another music documentary, and so the balance of interviews to performance was weighted more heavily towards interviews. Part of the reason for this was that I wanted the film to appeal to a broad audience, and my thought was that if someone came to the film ambivalent or disliking heavy music, by minimizing how much they had to sit through it would give a better chance that they'd stick around.
As it turned out though, everyone wanted to see and especially hear, more of the women performing, regardless of their musical preference coming into the film. That was a bit surprising, although I think it speaks to the talent of the artists.
What are you looking to achieve by having your film more visible on www.wearemovingstories.com?
As mentioned, I think this film has a broad appeal beyond just fans of heavy metal music; it's really a universal story set in the world of heavy music, and I'm hopeful that other people will take the opportunity to view it and identify with all that's familiar about these women's stories.
Who do you need to come on board (producers, sales agents, buyers, distributors, film festival directors, journalists) to amplify this film’s message?
I'd be happy to speak to any of the above kinds of people about the film. Much of the film was shot in Europe and features European artists, and unsurprisingly the biggest response has been from that region. But these artists have huge fanbases in Central/South America and I have to admit that I haven't had much luck in reaching those audiences yet.
What type of impact and/or reception would you like this film to have?
I'd like people to see the film and be open to the music and works that these artists create.
What’s a key question that will help spark a debate or begin a conversation about this film?
What other projects are the key creatives developing or working on now?
We're currently looking at the feasibility of a sequel/follow-up to this film and have shot interviews with a number of different artists not featured in the original film. There are also several scripted works in various stages of development,
Interview: July 2017
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
Soaring Highs and Brutal Lows:The Voices of Women in Metal
Their stories. Their voices. Their words.
Length: 93 Min
Director: Mark Harwood
Producer: Mark Harwood
Writer: Mark Harwood
About the writer, director and producer:
Mark Harwood is a Canadian-American producer and heavy metal fan currently living in Los Angeles.
Key cast: Floor Jansen, Charlotte Wessels, Marcela Bovio, Anneke Van Giersbergen, Alissa White-Gluz, Doro Pesch, Simone Simons
Looking for (producers, sales agents, buyers, distributors, film festival directors, journalists):
Social media handles:
Instagram: @ northdark
Where can I see it in the next month? MIC Genero (Mexico City), VHX,