“I want to make fucking movies man”, nineteen year-old, Communication and Media Studies student Brad Sullivan answered rather enthusiastically when I put the question to him of what unrealistic goals he has.
Convincing Brad to pitch his film ideas was a chore in itself however he reconciled his fear that I may “steal his plot-points” after wanting to attribute my name to the production. From a murderous geocaching adventure to a crime-lord facing off a couriered individual with “mystic vagina powers”, his ideas were erratic, purely self-indulgent and based on the premise that they were to make up for the lack in the current film industry.
Making me feel so very uncultured in comparison, I question as to whether he has any criticisms over the expansion of films to other platforms and mediums saying, “The biggest films are obviously franchise films, content that is created to be so open-ended and expansive that even if one part fails, the entire brand won’t fall down.”
“The expansion to YouTube series’ and Netflix shows has let us, the audience, engage with a greater variety of content,” Brad continued. Addressing the issue of saturation he stated, “You might put all this effort into an idea, get all the equipment and process all the footage into this compact film or show, but without anything backing you whether it’s studios or sponsors, there is never any guarantee of exposure or expansion, and there shouldn’t be because it’s completely unrealistic that each individual could be capable of becoming the next big producer.”
Asking how he’d develop his audience and keep them engaged, Brad responded realistically by saying, “It would essentially be impossible for me to have my work exposed without marketing it myself. If I had to checklist, I imagine that cultivating a large network of friends who might be interested in my content wouldn’t go astray, maybe after I’ve created some series I might attempt to gain sponsorship from some relevant company.”
“Immersing my audience would be my biggest priority, speaking entirely of the content,” Brad said to me. Eager to explain why and how at the same time he said,”The best examples of immersion that I’ve seen is from the camera work of TV shows and film, such as American Horror Story and Run Lola Run. The use of real-time and single-take shots reminds me of theatre with the audience in attendance witnessing the change in sets and stage in real-time.”
Curious as to what film or TV show most engaged him, Brad answered with “12 Angry Men (1957). It’s this film following the events of a court case, and it’s shot [almost] entirely in the room of a jury. It might show it’s age in some regard, but I was surprised with how the director could have an entire 2 hours dedicated to 12 unnamed jurors discussing the case, all the while establishing the culture and preconceptions of the world without ever leaving the room.”
From an interview that spanned over an hour, that didn’t include the additional aspirations of wanting to record commentary of porn for entertainment purposes, I imagine that Brad will achieve an awful lot in his future, albeit questionable, career.