Man cannot live off bread alone…
Interview with Writer/Director David Noel Bourke
Congratulations! Why did you make your film?
Thank you! I had written a lot of material and a much of it was in development with various producers for too long. I was itching to tell the story of Bakerman with its topical themes, so I decided to grab the bull by the horns and went out and just shot the film.
Imagine I’m a member of the audience. Why should I watch this film?
Be entertained. Be thrilled! Be provoked! This film has a bit of everything. We are all somewhat lonely or have been lonely, we are all frustrated or have been frustrated by society, we all have some regrets and lost loves. If you want to see a no-holds-barred character drama that doesn’t pull any punches, you will get a lot out of this film. I’m told there is a little Bakerman in all of us.
How do personal and universal themes work in your film?
Being Irish and living in Denmark, I’m an immigrant with a bi-lingual family.
The theme of immigration is a key aspect of the film, and the Scandinavian society is explored directly and indirectly. Our main protagonist (Jens played by Mikkel Vadsholt) can’t handle the modern world and discovers the hard way that really all he needs is love, compassion and to overcome his fear. He needs to let some light in. It may sound corny and it’s wrapped up in a Nordic Noir crime film but that’s one of the key themes.
How have the script and film evolved over the course of their development?
Initially it was a broad “police procedural” film and Jens was “the bad guy” being chased down. Eventually I came to realise the police aspect was the less interesting and the character of Jens was key to the whole story. So, I worked with actor Mikkel Vadsholt to define him in a good way and build him up. In the end we chose not to have any police characters in the film because it’s done way too much in modern crime films. I wanted to stay in Jens universe, all the time…even though that is soemtimes very uncomfortable for the audience.
What type of feedback have you received so far?
For an indie produced feature film, we really cannot complain. Some folk are more into it than others, that’s fair enough. But overall, it has got some great reviews and it’s been to several major film festivals including the Munich International Film Festival which is the biggest film festival in Germany behind Berlinale. We had lots of film panels discussions at various festivals…so it’s been a great bridge for all those who are connected to the film. They loved it at Munich, and I quote:
"... We really liked BAKERMAN and the sinister twist you give to the superhero tropes lingering in pop culture right now and was amazed by Mikkel Vandsholt's performance oscillating between touching introspection and vulnerability and these violent outbursts that are both shocking and eerily relatable." – Munich International Film Festival
Has the feedback surprised or challenged your point of view?
Of course you grow and mature all the time, you hope! I try and listen to everybody but people will have their own opinions. For sure Bakerman is not everyone's cup of tea and if it was I would be disappointed. Some folk want to see only the big names for example. Fair enough, but I feel we got talented unknowns, which turned out great. So we just need to continue and move forward. I have lots of stories to tell and films to be made, big names or not. Some will dig what you do and some others won’t. That’s life.
What are you looking to achieve by having your film more visible on www.wearemovingstories.com?
Well if I get lucky and some of your readers think Bakerman is interesting I hope they check it out. It will be released soon and it is currently on a world film festival tour. Keep an eye out in your neck of the woods and hope to meet you and have a chat.
Who do you need to come on board (producers, sales agents, buyers, distributors, film festival directors, journalists) to amplify this film’s message?
I think it’s a process. Currently on a film festival tour, so that’s generating a lot of interest. Later on I hope to distribute it and there are many options here. So let’s see, it’s slowly but surely finding its audience. It all takes time but we are in a good position. So I welcome everyone!
What type of impact and/or reception would you like this film to have?
If my film gets people to think a little and maybe challenges them it succeeds. One great meeting I had with an audience member was at the premiere in CPH:PIX (the biggest film festival in Denmark). A woman came up to me and sat me down in a corner and had several opinions on the story and asked me if I agree. It was a little frightening but very cool in a way. One point she made was the tyre iron that Jens uses to attack an immigrant was a symbol of perceived battles of Christianity vs Islam. Heavy stuff! But that makes all the hard work worth it. That creative feedback is what it’s all about as a filmmaker and artist. It’s great.
What’s a key question that will help spark a debate or begin a conversation about this film?
Jens is “the beast” in a Beauty and the Beast like scenario. The question is: can a character like Jens find peace and love?
Would you like to add anything else?
Hope your readers can a chance to see my film and don’t be afraid to get in touch, I appreciate the reaching out!
What other projects are the key creatives developing or working on now?
Bakerman is a bridge to more mature and somewhat personal films in the future. Working with various folk on two very different projects- both equally exciting and a new direction as a filmmaker. One is a “science fantasy” film, tentatively titled “The boy who stole the world” and the other is an Irish based comedy called “The Teeth of Richard Harris”.
Interview: August 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
Man cannot live off bread alone…
Length: 83 minutes
Director: David Noel Bourke
Producer: Michael Conlan, David McNamara
Writer: David Noel Bourke
About the writer, director and producer:
David Noel Bourke is an Irish director/writer/editor residing in Denmark.
An efficient writer, director, and editor, David has made three independent feature films: LAST EXIT (2003), NO RIGHT TURN (2009), and BAKERMAN (2017). These films have been launched around the world from US, Germany, Sweden and Denmark. Two new film projects are in the pipeline, an Irish comedy feature in the style of Roddy Doyle and brand new science fiction project.
"Last Exit" (feature film, micro budget drama).
"No Right Turn" (feature film, pulp noir pastiche)
- Screened at CPH:PIX 2009. Distributed on DVD in Nordics & US.
"Bakerman" 2017 (feature film, character drama)
+ World Premiere CPH:PIX 2016 - New Danish Talent Category
+ Dingle International Film Festival 2017 - Participated in Independent Journey Film Panel
+ Munich International Film Festival 2017
+ Lund International Fantastic Film Festival 2017
Looking for (producers, sales agents, buyers, distributors, film festival directors, journalists):
Social media handles:
Where can I see it in the next month? Lund International Fantastic Film Festival. Check screening dates at fff.se.
Scandinavian International Film Festival (SCIFF)