Director Biography – Deeptanshu Sinha (SIEGE)

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Deeptanshu Sinha is a visionary director whose films portray out of the box visionary ideas with true to life characters. They are made on a large visual scale and are designed for the ultimate cinematic experience.

Deeptanshu has been in the field of filmmaking since the last 7 years. Starting off as a Screenwriter, he has 2 feature length spec screenplays to his name and has been a Screenwriter for over 20 short films. He further pursued Direction and has directed 22 short films in the last 3 years. He is also well versed with the technical aspects of filmmaking as he been an Editor for over 15 short films.

Deeptanshu holds a B.Sc. degree in Filmmaking with specialization in Direction from Whistling Woods International, India. He further specialized as an Editor and Director during his time at Vancouver Film School, Canada.

With strong grasp on script to screen execution, Deeptanshu aims to be a complete filmmaker who will raise the bar with every film he makes and change the way we experience films.

Director Biography – Janne Kasperi Suhonen (DIVE ODYSSEY)

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Janne Kasperi Suhonen is a Helsinki-based freelance photographer and film maker. He graduated from the Lahti Design Institute and specializes in underwater filming. Janne is perfectionist and occasionally impatient commander. In order to achieve the goals, he pushes the team to its’ extreme. As Janne is the camera operator he plans the shoots and leads the team during the under water filming. His enthusiasm strengthens the bond among the others.

He is Co-founder of the Divers of the Dark dive team and Co-author of ‘Divers of the Dark’ book. Janne is responsible of photography and video for all the Divers of the Dark team movies, commercials, books, and magazine articles.

Director Statement

Dive Odyssey is a tribute to loved hobbies, diving and sci-fi movies. But what is the common nominator between these two things justifying this project? For me, the connection has always been evident. Cave dive is a visual experience in three dimensions, a flight into the inner space.

From my childhood, I remember all the weekends at my grandparents’ house, far in the countryside. Along with fishing and carpentry, I got to watch movies on television in the evening, something I wasn’t allowed to do at home. One particular time was when I was 8 years old and saw Space Odyssey 2001 for the first time, grandpa dozing off in the chair next to me. I didn’t understand much about the movie, but I watched hypnotized all the same. The challenging and open-ended climax wouldn’t escape my mind for a long time.

The strength of the science-fiction genre is in the ability to address challenging social or personal problems without restrictions. At best, the utopias or dystopias create a shell inside which it is easy to focus on the underlying subject – without the usual constraints set by the real world. In addition to Space Odyssey 2001, other movie classics that have greatly influenced me include Solaris, Phase IV, Rollerball, Silent Running, Blade Runner, Alien, Soylent Green, Man Who Felt The Earth, and Zardoz.

The project is a confession of love for diving. It has given me so much. Friends. A new direction for my profession as a photographer. Experiences that no other person has seen or experienced before me. Lost wrecks. Natural cave after thousands of years in the making. Sights underground lit and photographed in a way that no one before me has been capable of.

At first, diving in caves wasn’t something I was looking forward to doing. I enjoyed the countless details of wrecks. In comparison, diving inside the dark and cold stone didn’t seem very inspiring. But all that changed in an instant when I first dived into the Ojamo limestone mine. The surface water was murky, but when going inside, the water turned crystal clear. After a few fin strokes, I entered the K-5 mining hall which is big enough to hold a 10-story building inside it. In the middle of the hall, I could no longer see the walls, the ceiling, or the bottom. I felt like flying in space. I had to use all the power of will to move forward. It all seemed so alien and intangible. It was like stepping out of a spaceship and taking a spacewalk.

There was no turning back. I wanted to go deeper and further.

Sharing these experiences has been the primary driver in all my diving related film productions. In media, cave diving is often presented as a hobby for people with a sure death wish. It is also seen as an extreme sport that is run by a small group of enthusiasts. The public interest is mainly taken in situations where lives are lost. This is personally experienced when working in the Diving into the Unknown film project. Dive Odyssey tries to show the other side of the sport, the beauty, and space-like environment and experience.

Director Biography – Frankie De Leonardis (FLOATING)

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Frankie De Leonardis is an Italian/Argentine director living in Barcelona. He’s been on the industry since 1997, mainly on tv title design and advertising direction. He’s won several awards including NY Advertising Festival (2011), European BDA Promax, ADCE, Laus for his work in advertising and title design.

Director Statement

This is my first ever cinematic project. It’s been a lifetime dream to become a director but life went some other way. I decided it was time to follow one’s dream and invested everything into this shortfilm.

The film talks about acceptance, denial with a bit of humor. It also talks about things being different than what you expect. A russian astronaut being gay with a loving husband and a child to return to is a small detail that is unthinkable in the current policies of Russia. Sometimes things are just not what you expect and that does not mean they are wrong.

The production and post production was extremelly hard. Most space films, and series, do not make their characters float for a long period of time or they just don’t do it at all. That’s because it is a huge challenge, expensive and hard. We achieved these goals in just two days of shoothing, and four months of post production.

All the Best,
Frankie De Leonardis

Director Biography – John Carlin (ECHOES

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John is the director of horror shorts ‘Exposure’ & ‘6 Feet Under’ and the award winning Sci-fi-Fi ‘The Way Back’. ‘ECHOES’ is the fourth collaboration with the writing team of Paul Skillen and Aaron Gray. John has been working as a director in the television industry for 17 years and directed the Irish language drama ‘Seacht’ for BBC and TG4. He also wrote and directed 12 episodes of the factual drama series Marú for TG4. Most recently he filmed, edited and directed the factual documentary series Ireland’s Great War for BBC and RTE.

Director Statement

ECHOES was first developed back in 2015 when the writers, Paul Skillen and Aaron Gray finished a feature length script called THE SILENCE. The decision was taken to produce a concept short film thematically based on the ideas within the feature film and ECHOES was born.

What I found interesting with the story was the unique take on human weakness – our ability to destroy our own kind for personal gain. The film is based around the idea that “spheres” have been sent throughout the galaxy by an alien life-form as a defence mechanism. These spheres have been located on planets that form a ring of protection around their own extra-terrestrial planet as they fear the consequences of humans finding them. These spheres are capable of heightening the destructive side of any human that comes into immediate contact with it, leading to rage, insanity and ultimately death to all those that encounter it.

I have previously worked with Paul and Aaron on three short films (EXPOSURE, 6 FEET UNDER, THE WAY BACK). We have a common interest in telling dark tales that have a deeper meaning. We have similar tastes in horror and science fiction and always work as a team to deliver a twisted story that can be read on different levels.

My own inspirations in preparing for ECHOES were varied and included “TAPE” by Richard Linklater ( a claustrophobic tale of 3 old friends meeting up in a motel room) to Paul W.S. Anderson’s dark sci-fi/horror “EVENT HORIZON”. What interests me are character arcs that all move in different directions to each other. This is something that is evident in ECHOES.

When developing ECHOES as a short film it became clear early in the process that we were attempting something bigger than we had tried before. We had to design and build a complete “space train” set, something that was going to eat up a huge chunk of our budget. It was integral to the story and needed to be something that could be a working set yet still give us a sense of confinement and claustrophobia. The next important question I had to ask was how could I best tell the story visually – what could I bring that would lend itself to the character’s plot of losing control. I decided to shoot the film with a slightly unconventional approach – using three different methods.
The first was the filming method. I shot the early scenes on a mixture of tracks, sliders and tripods. This created a sense of stability. As the story progressed I gradually began adding more and more handheld camera work until the final scene that is completely handheld. This gave the illusion that everything was gradually losing control.

I imitated this same technique in the second method by applying the similar approach to the actors. As with my first method I gradually allowed the actors to re-act rather than deliver exact lines over the duration of the film. All the early scenes were verbatim from the script but as the film moved on the dialogue got looser. This gave the feeling of naturalism that I was looking for and something the actors relished.

The final visual aid I used to create the impression of loss of control was the grade. I applied a grade that gradually gets “sicker” as the film moves through the scenes – each scene slightly greener and more distorted than the last.

Due to the cost of the set build we had to condense our shoot into 2 days. We shot scenes at a fast pace giving the entire film more energy. The actors and main crew stayed in the carriage for long periods of time. We actually felt like we were on the journey we were replicating.

What I hope audiences get from ECHOES is something that changes their opinion – something that starts one way but gradually twists their perception. I also hope they feel claustrophobic – there is intentional reason why we stay on board the shuttle throughout – to keep our audience captive and a part of the journey. They should hopefully question the meaning of the sphere and who Goudine is, why she isn’t affected. These are the questions that Sa’im would also ask and that’s who the audience should be rooting for. He is the lynch-pin of the story. Someone who has to make the decisions, who has to understand what or who is good or evil.

Director Biography – Rebecca Gardiner (TRANSMISSION)

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Rebecca is a film maker with a passion for intense and immersive storytelling. She is completing her masters in film specialising in directing and writing.
She creates compelling tales with cores of truth and dramatic sensibilities within the horror, science fiction, action, fantasy and thriller genres as she loves the visual freedom and complexity of sight, sound and emotion these genres allow.

Rebecca has taken on the challenge of creating the types of films and characters that she wants to see, creating powerful and multifaceted female lead characters within genre films that tackle matters which are relevant to the world today within futuristic setting that remain relevant to current issues.

Rebecca is currently refining her first feature script which she is looking forward to bringing to life.

Director Statement

With Transmission I wanted to tackle several aspects I personally find lacking in the film world. Strong female leads and tackling the sci-fi genre being a female writer and director.

I wanted to express my opinion of how we abuse our planet in a genre I find extremely exciting and challenging, Science fiction is often overlooked as not being as “worthy” as straight dramas, but any genre must have a core of truth and dramatic sensibilities if it will speak to audiences.
With all this in mind I set myself some rules, started writing and thus Transmission was born.

Transmission is about how we have destroyed our home and must find a new place, or resources to survive. But what they find on this new planet is a world that rejects us, fights us of as though we are a virus.

Right now Transmission only lives in this short film version, but I believe that it could be a quality production in either feature film or TV series delivery. My personal aim at this point is to take my short script and expand it into a feature length script to begin that development process.

I want the the short to have a life of it’s own in the sci-fi festival route as well as many of the women in film festivals. My hope is once created the short would even be able to stand up against the more dramatic fare that get play at the “big” festivals.

Once it has lived that life, I plan to use it as a taster for expanding the world to a larger scale.

Science fiction is an often underrated as a filmic art form, a point in case is The Martian winning best comedy at the golden globes. Yet it is a genre with a rabid and widespread fan base really to grab up new content that comes their way. I should know, I am one of them.

I want my home country to break from our current rut of horror or drama films, to look back and embrace our passion and freedom in making films, where we made the wildest films out there, and made them well. And I want to be one of the ones out front making these films.

Director Biography – Didac Gimeno (SATURN THROUGH THE TELESCOPE)

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Graduated in Veterinary Sciences in 2011, I have worked as a veterinarian mainly in the fields of cardiology and in clinical practice with exotic animals. In 2014 I graduated in Film Direction in the Cinematography and Audiovisual School of the Community of Madrid (ECAM) with the highest mark in my speciality.
Oscillation (2014), my end-of-course short film, has been selected in around fifty international festivals and has won several awards and nominations, among them, the Best University Short-film Award in the Nocturna Madrid Festival; the Lunartis Award in the Videmedeja Film Festival, Serbia; Spanish Radio and Television Corporation (RTVE) Award in the Hispasat 4K Festival; the nomination for the Silver Méliès in the Imagine Fantastic Film Festival or the nomination for the Gold Panda in China for the most innovative short-film.
“Saturn through the telescope” (2018), my last short-film, has won the aid for audiovisual creation from both the Malaga Film Festival and the Community of Madrid. Nowadays, it is at the distribution stage.

 

Director Statement

This shortfilm is about the desire of watching something that scares but fascinates you at the same time. Here, Max, a ten years old boy, discovers the pulsion of seeing a horror movie.
Altough is a fantastic genre shortfilm, it is deeply autobiographic. I remember when I was a kid and I ran out of bed at night for seeing horror movies on the television, even knowing I would had nightmares after. However I was fascinated by its disturbing but beatiful images, so that supposed the begining of my love for cinema.

Director BIO – Roth Rind (THIS IS FINE)

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Director Statement

Life is a movie made up of a million narratives. It’s genre defined by the dramatic interactions we encounter, wrapped in adventure, fear, heartbreak, love, crisis, success and failure. It’s theme is forever constant, and yet fluid. It’s a journey where the only guide is a faded map and ‘x’ marks the ever-shifting spot. It’s penned in black with a mantle of red notes where the character seeks the knowledge of what matters most.

The call sheet varies from day-to-day where some characters play the featured and others support the play. They span the spectrum of color, age and physique, but their role is not defined. They are the masters of sentiment both for self and patrons, unpredictable but clear. The cast list welcomes new faces seeking a purpose, and inevitably says farewell to favorites that have reached ‘The End.’

In a flash the movie is over with a final image of the lead riding off the edge of the setting sun… but when the credits roll and the lights come up to the remnants of popcorn seeds and candy wrappers, a mark remains. A mark of warmth, of sadness, of absolution, and of understanding. This mark is carried by the players who brought it to the silver screen and the audience who dared to pay the ticket price.

So let’s make a movie with a story of life in hopes that together we leave a mark that lasts.