Her life changed in the blink of an eye. Music set her free.
Interview with Producer Poppy Walker and Director Sophie Hexter
Congratulations! Why did you make your film?
Create NSW launched an initiative for regional filmmakers called SEED and we were successful recipients last year. Sophie had reached out to Renee the previous year, and we were struck not only by her staggering musical talent, but also her resilience and vision. We really wanted to bring her story to the screen.
Imagine I’m a member of the audience. Why should I watch this film?
Renee’s story is very moving, and her gentle strength and talent is a joy to watch. It’s a motivation, too, to get out and there and do what you love to do.
How do personal and universal themes work in your film?
Every great hero or heroine works to overcome challenges, to emerge stronger. Renee has worked hard, despite her disability, to become a successful artist in her own right. Hers is a universally relevant story of forging identity, overcoming adversity and searching for belonging.
How have the script and film evolved over the course of their development?
Not a great deal. Sophie’s vision for the film was strong from the outset, and with Renee’s collaborative involvement, it was always going to be a story weaving her reflections on the past, with her current musical performance. Sophie and Renee spent a great deal of time talking before the initial script was written.
What type of feedback have you received so far?
It’s been really positive. The film has screened at a number of acclaimed national and international festivals, debuting internationally at Big Sky in Montana, where it was nominated as best documentary short, and back home at St Kilda Film Festival. It also won the audience award at Flickerfest’s Byron All Shorts earlier this year.
Has the feedback surprised or challenged your point of view?
We are thrilled that the film resonates so strongly with audiences.
What are you looking to achieve by having your film more visible on www.wearemovingstories.com?
It would be wonderful if more people could see the film, as Renee is still building her profile as a musician, and we are hoping this will enable her to have ongoing success.
Who do you need to come on board (producers, sales agents, buyers, distributors, film festival directors, journalists) to amplify this film’s message?
We would love to continue screening the film internationally, so sales agents and buyers are the people we would like to come on board.
What type of impact and/or reception would you like this film to have?
We would love Renee’s story to touch people and encourage them to follow their passions.
What’s a key question that will help spark a debate or begin a conversation about this film?
How can we define limitations and potential in ourselves?
What other projects are the key creatives developing or working on now?
A couple of short documentaries and a feature film.
Interview: June 2018
We Are Moving Stories embraces new voices in drama, documentary, animation, TV, web series, music video, women's films, LGBTQIA+, POC, First Nations, scifi, supernatural, horror, world cinema. 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
Renee Kelly is a prodigious rock drummer, who's also completely blind. Moving between past reflections and future dreams, Renee's story reveals a passionate and determined artist, set to a bold musical score.
Director: Sophie Hexter
Producer: Poppy Walker
About the writer, director and producer:
SOPHIE HEXTER and POPPY WALKER have worked in screen media for over ten years and co-founded the multi-disciplinary media company, H.W. Collective, in 2014. They have screened a number of short films globally and currently have two feature films in development.
Key cast: Renee Kelly
Looking for: Distributors and FF directors
Funders: Create NSW
Where can I watch it next and in the coming month? It is on iView and screening at various national and international festivals.