Moviescramble met with Glasgow based editor/producer Chris Quick to speak about his latest project, Electric Faces, a sci-fi short he worked on with director Johnny Herbin. The film is due to released later in the year. Following on from Part One, we took some time to get to know Chris.
So, Chris, tell us about yourself. Is your background in film?
I actually started out in theatre. I had been heavily involved in drama at school and theatre was the natural progression. I started to get a taste for filmmaking in 6th year and decided to study filmmaking alongside doing theatrical productions. When a theatre company I was associated with disbanded in 2007 I decided to concentrate solely on filmmaking.
How did you make your first steps into the world of film?
In 2009, I co-founded Quick Off The Mark Productions with a fellow student and we have collaborated on a number of films together.
You were also one of the founders of the Glasgow Filmmaker’s Alliance – what can you tell us about this?
When I was involved in the feature film ‘In Search of La Che’, we found there was no central location where we could find all the different kinds of people we needed to make the film. Once the film was completed, I set the wheels in motion to create a directory that would have everyone in one place in an easy to use, non subscription/fee paying website. As we represent people on both sides of the camera it’s been great to work with Ayrshire actor Andrew O’Donnell , the director of the Glasgow Filmmakers Alliance.
How has the Alliance grown in recent years?
The directory has been steadily expanding into new areas where certain jobs that weren’t listed before are now making an appearance. The directory has also supported the Glasgow Creative Network, which was established by Stephen Paton from Production Attic.
What are your ambitions in the future? Feature films?
Having done one feature film in the past, I know how expensive and time consuming it can be but it would be great to get another one under the belt soon. Crowd funding is an option to help ease the financial burden but it’s become so mainstream to fund films this way amongst independents that the project would really have to stand out to reach a substantial goal.
What funds are available to filmmakers starting out in Glasgow?
In short, bugger all. A lot of the funding for filmmaking is treated like a loan rather than a subsidy. The biggest mistake this country (Scotland) ever made was to merge the funding bodies together to form Creative Scotland. The inclusion of an established name prevents the majority of filmmakers from being in contention of any form of funding from what is now considered the main arts body. What also adds to the problem is now that the ‘financial pots’ have been merged meaning every art from is competing for a slice of the same fund. We now have a bizarre scenario where filmmakers are now competing against the likes of painters, dancers, operatic societies and theatre groups. It does more harm than good for each art form.
How about your own taste in film? Are you a Hollywood film fan or do you have an interest in foreign films?
I think I would have to say Hollywood films. The only foreign film that I have really liked that has had a lasting impact is Cinema Paradiso.
If you could go back in time to work on a film in any year, what would it be and why?
It would have to be Lawrence of Arabia. To go back and work with David Lean in that time and to shoot that epic with genuine locations and real people (no CGI) would be brilliant.
In Part One you mentioned the use of CGI in Electric Faces. Is CGI as much of a curse as it can be a blessing for film-makers?
I’m with Clint Eastwood on the question of excessive CGI in films on the basis that I too can’t stand it. CGI should enhance a film, it shouldn’t be the sole aspect of the film. I prefer to see a film where the story is being told in the old fashion way through the acting and dialogue. Films like Gravity, The Matrix and Inception infuriate me.
How about your experience of the film culture in Glasgow? Do you get out to see many of the new releases?
I’m actually really bad for seeing films. I have a huge list of classics that I’ve never seen and Idon’t see new releases until they have been out for a few years. In that aspect, you could say I’m probably working in the wrong industry!
Well, Chris, thanks for your time. We wish you all the best in the future. One last question and an easy one to finish, what would you say is your favourite film?
My favourite film is Zulu. Best British film ever made.