Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Few more International release dates for "Perfect Sense"

The Perfect Sense IMDB page has been updated with a few more international release dates, some of which we already knew:

Greece: 15 September
Hungary: 29 September
Ireland/UK : 7 October
Netherlands: 19 January 2012

Those that have graciously been following along with me will recall that Turkey saw the release of the newest film from David Mackenzie this week. Perfect Sense is also screening in many major German cities as part of Fantasy FilmFest (in Munich still yet next week)
Also as reported earlier, the film will be part of a special dinner and a film series at the San Sebastian Film festival 16-24 September, with fans in France able to catch the film at the Dinard Film Festival in early October. Still no word from IFC films regarding a timetable on a US release yet folks, sorry

Finally and this is very cool, check out this video interview with EVA GREEN for conducted earlier this year at Sundance, where Eva talks working with Ewan McGregor and even eating at Guys Restaurant in Glasgow :)

"Handcuffs" Clip from You Instead

Blockbuster UK and STV both have the following clip from David Mackenzie's "You Instead" which will be released in the UK this September.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

List Magazine Interview with David Mackenzie on Perfect Sense, New Films for future

Again sorry for the delay on posting but definitely want to draw attention to an interview, this again with the excellent David Mackenzie, where he discusses his future film making plans and hopes. In List Magazine he reiterates some of the projects we already know about (Stain in the Snow, the space film etc) but of note are two pieces/adaptations I had known were on the table. GO DAVE GO! :) Quotage (and I LOVE YOU DAVE for saying yet again what Ive been prattling on for years ie that your films are indeed some type of 'romances' :D )

"Within a week or two of being back in Scotland, the script for Perfect Sense, one of two new Glasgow-set films Mackenzie has directed back-to-back (the other is You Instead), arrived on his desk and immediately seized the filmmaker’s attention. ‘So now,’ Mackenzie says, ‘it was: I’m back and something’s really excited me. It’s not like I’m never going to go back to Hollywood, and I have already, to talk to people about American movies, but it was really good to be back.’

Perfect Sense is a science fiction romance, although Mackenzie avoids both genre trappings and schmaltz, something that will come as no surprise to those familiar with his other films. The sci-fi element is a global plague that is robbing humankind of its five senses one-by-one. The romance is between Ewan McGregor’s restaurant chef and Eva Green’s scientist, both of which lost souls shag around, but shun emotional intimacy … until they meet one another just as the world appears to be ending. As conceived by Danish screenwriter Kim Fupz Aakeson and executed by Mackenzie (the film is a co-production between Sigma and Lars von Trier’s Copenhagen-headquartered Zentropa), Perfect Sense is, on the surface, chillingly bleak. Look beyond the apocalyptic carnage, however, and there’s a rather upbeat message along the lines of: make hay while the sun shines. And if you choose to read the film as a metaphor for falling in love, then Perfect Sense starts to look positively sentimental.

What’s happened to Mackenzie, the man who has in the past referred to his films as ‘anti-romances’? If Perfect Sense reveals itself as anything but an anti-romance then wait until you get a load of You Instead, which is a full-blown romantic comedy, albeit a very offbeat one. In it, Luke Treadaway’s strutting indie-pop star finds himself accidentally handcuffed to Natalia Tena’s feisty lead singer of an all-girl punk band at a music festival. Set during and shot at last year’s T in the Park, You Instead is a rocking mix of lust, mud, filthy language and loud music with an entirely appropriate freewheeling spirit that is, in fact, down to Mackenzie and his cast and crew adopting the kind of guerrilla filmmaking approach necessary to shoot amidst the chaos of a music festival.

‘All my films are, in some way, romances,’ Mackenzie says. ‘But I’ve always felt that the best romances are somehow doomed. Think of Casablanca. It’s been a recent realisation that love is good, after all. I’m a family man now. I’m a father now. I suppose it must have affected my outlook. You Instead is essentially a one-night-stand film, so it’s allowed to be romantic in those terms. The potential cheese of that is tempered by the mud and the mayhem of the festival, just as the potential cheese in Perfect Sense is tempered by the seismic events that the romance is set against. So it’s not like full-cheese love, but moving in that direction perhaps. There’s me thinking I’ve been an anti-romantic,’ Mackenzie says with a laugh, ‘and I haven’t ever been.’

Perhaps Mackenzie’s flirtation with cheese love also has something to do with him, please forgive the pun, maturing as a man and a filmmaker. He turned 45 this summer and for the last seven of those years he’s been a dad. He now has seven features under his belt as well as a handful of shorts and, in Sigma Films, co-partnership in a successful production company that has made, apart from his own films, Andrea Arnold’s Red Road, Susanne Bier’s After the Wedding, Thomas Vinterberg’s Dear Wendy, von Trier’s Dogville and Lone Scherfig’s Wilbur Wants to Kill Himself. And 14 years on since Sigma produced its first film, Mackenzie’s presciently titled short California Sunshine, the company has been instrumental in setting up Filmcity Glasgow, a production and post-production facility housed in the old Goven town hall that’s well on its way to becoming Scotland’s first fully functional film studio.

Being back in Glasgow and working at Filmcity certainly seems to have galvanised Mackenzie. ‘I was doing the sound mix for Perfect Sense along the corridor here,’ he says, ‘and then going down to the ballroom to rehearse You Instead. It’s great to be able to do all that at Filmcity – which, I should say, Gillian is largely responsible for creating – and its great to have that here in Glasgow.’ Mackenzie and Berrie are currently developing a handful of projects at Sigma’s Filmcity HQ, at least one of which Mackenzie will direct. One of them is another science fiction film, Journey into Space, about the microcosm of a spaceship over a long period of time and how its society evolves into a dystopia. There’s also a prison drama about a father and son who meet each other for the first time inside (‘there’s no romance in that’, Mackenzie notes) and there’s The Zanzibar Chest, which is based on war journalist Aiden Hartley’s epic book about 20th century Africa, and there’s an adaptation of Belgian crime writer George Simenon’s Second World War noir The Stain on the Snow, which Mackenzie scripted and sounds like he’s the most keen to direct. ‘It’s about a bunch of 17-year-olds in an occupied country,’ he says. ‘It’s all set in winter and its very sexy. There’s something very dark about it.’

Back to the dark side, then, after his brief sojourn to the light side? ‘Ah, yes,’ Mackenzie snorts. ‘Possibly.’ Whichever way he goes, he aims to keep himself busy. ‘Every time you finish a film you’re essentially unemployed. So you need to keep moving. But I’m not sure how sustainable it is to be making movies as rapidly as I have in the last two or three years. Particularly,’ Mackenzie adds, ‘if you want to spend time with your family.’

Photos of Gillian Berrie from "Perfect Sense" Screening at Glasgow Film Theatre

Here's something that cheered me considerably: new photos and a report from last month's screening of "Perfect Sense" at the launch of Cinema City at Glasgow Film Theatre. In the photo here---> is Gillian Berrie, co-founder of Sigma Films producer extraordinaire and a person I admire very much. I also really like that banner!
Many more pics can be found right here on flickr and a brief report of the event here.

"Perfect Sense" to Screen at Dinard Film Fest Along with "You Instead"

Recently via Screen Daily, we learned that "You Instead" will be in competition at the Dinard Film Festival in October. In addition I can report now that screening out of competition will be David Mackenzie's critically acclaimed "Perfect Sense" as part of a special "close-up Scotland" section of the festival.

This is a great chance for fans in France to catch two of David's most recent movies when the festival takes place 5-9 October.

Download Acoustic Track from "You Instead"

A cool new acoustic track from You Instead is now available.

I know some are having issues with obtaining this so here is what to do:
GO TO THE YI FB at this link (give a few it will be there)
Register for Distrify (ITS FREE, easy pie)
Download the great title track sung by Luke Treadaway & Mat Baynton.
See the film when it opens in the UK in September. Should be playing region wide; one is DCA Dundee 16 September-29 September Tix here

UK Press had their previews and some are beginning to appear online. Here is a good one from Front Row Gig. Quotage: "...two of the characters, Tyko (Matthew Baynton), who is Adams band mate, and the bands agent (Gavin Mitchell) were genuinely brilliant characters played excellently, those two created the better moments of the film...The films soundtrack is, as expected, one of the strongest elements of the film, using many excellent tracks, both modern and older, most of which were live at ‘T in the Park’, and sound excellent, the cover of ‘Tainted Love’ by the two fictitious bands was particularly memorable."

Bonus: you can preview that acoustic title track here on my Soundcloud; please download via Distrify.

"you instead" accoustic Luke Treadaway, Mat by sweetonsigmafilms

Rant and actual news about some contests

For those that can actually follow any sort of twitter/fb news which, in mine and others opinion, has been rather buried among the absurd amount of other festival/band news unrelated to the actual film itself the larger readership and Sigma film fans might know that David Mackenzie's "You Instead" is due to be released in a few weeks in the UK. RANT!
The contrast between the excellent Perfect Sense twitter/campaign and this is mind boggling. can you tell Im fairly annoyed , TURNED OFF COMPLETELY and slightly pissed off at being blown off so much by this ? yes? cause I am :(( I MEAN WHAT THE HELL??? Am I the only one aghast at what has been happening. Yea probably but I cant contain it anymore (and I love Sigma so so so very much but oh man :(((((( The marketing of this film has been heartbreaking to me :(((( New cheap tacky tagline on the newest poster. gag. FB is awash in anything BUT news on the film. Quick who else stars in it besides Nat and Luke? gong time up! Certainly has been targeted to a very specific niche and generally unaware of the film crowd -free handcuffs! fliers galore (nevermind most end up in post festival rubbish) and woot free tees that have very little to do with actual movie!( yeah Im not a complete fuddy duddy, some of it is inspired-altho apparently if you are say 40 PERISH THE THOUGHT that festivals might still be interesting/appealing to you, because of course once you hit 30/give birth, get a job your music tastes all shrivel and die, you are no longer remotely fun cool, adventurous and have no memory capacity at all of ever attending such ground breaking events like the original Live Aid, following bands across the country or going to any such concerts cause as we know festivals are only for truly hip cool drunk mud reveling 20 yrs and we old respectable responsible job holding home owning ticket buying old fogies are not worthy pfffffffffffffffft soooo disappointed in how they are approaching the release of this can. not. stand. it any.more.*sigh*) HOPEFULLY I AM WRONG and it will prove to be a big box office smash and you know and in total fairness, there are in fact contests being held that are quite cool OPEN TO 16/18 and older ALL IN UK and definitely worth entering/reading about! There, I can still positive :P
So ok, now that is off my big old chest...

The London premiere of YOU INSTEAD will take place on 13 September at the Odeon, and promises to be a proper and big deal, complete with ticket opportunities to the screening as well as what will surely be a killer after party at Camden Barfly (complete w/ a performance from the excellent and unique Molotov Jukebox)
Here are three contests to win tix to that event GO NOW
*Gig Wise

*Orange Film

* 4Music AWESOME CONTEST includes a 32 INCH TV, IPOD & Best of all: PS3 w/Rockband (so you too can play like Al did as Monty in Monster Mutt lmao )

Part Two: Virgin Media Interview with David Mackenzie

Sorry for lack of updates; pressing personal life has taken precedent.

Right then, for those that did not see it earlier and as promised, Virgin Media did release their second part of their interview with director David Mackenzie. Well worth the read are David's comments on short films. For those unfamiliar with David's background in shorts (and a significant part of the Sigma films approach and background in developing filmmakers too I think) please read on:

Your lead actors in You Instead, Natalia Tena (Harry Potter) and Luke Treadaway (Clash of the Titans), both starred in short films before getting their big breaks. Do you think shorts are a good calling card in the industry?

"I made nine short films before I made my first feature. I was itching to get onto the longer format, because you put almost as much energy into a short as you do into a feature, and in the end you haven’t got as much to show for it. I don’t know how else you’d break into the industry. In the old days, people had to start out making commercials, and that’s another way in, but quite often people who direct commercials find it quite hard to then get into drama. Somebody once said to me ‘if you want to do drama, just do drama’ and I sort of followed that – one of my shorts was an arty documentary, but all of the others have been dramas.

So yes, I think it definitely is a calling card but it’s not just that, it’s about learning how to do the job. You have to get good at making films and learning to juggle all the things you have to juggle when you’re a director."

You won the Lloyds Bank Film Challenge with your film Beer Goggles. How important do you think competitions like that are for young film makers?

"That was a really good one. In a way that was my first professional commission, getting a reasonable budget and a proper format to take somebody else’s script and turn it into a movie. That was great. I think any of those opportunities are worth taking, because they’re all about putting in the flying hours, to develop the skills and make mistakes and learn some lessons."

Almost all of your films have been in Scotland. How did shooting your feature film Spread in LA compare to your usual locations of Glasgow and Edinburgh?

"The major difference when you’re shooting in LA is the weather, it’s so much more controllable. As a film maker, you’re at the mercy of the weather - it’s always changing, sometimes in the middle of a scene - and that makes it quite hard. You sometimes have to rip it up and start again when the weather changes because the scenes will never cut together. So you’re constantly being battered by that, as well as all the other problems with the schedule. Finding yourself in an environment where you don’t have that problem makes a significant difference to what you’re able to do. And you can focus on other things. I really enjoyed it for that reason! I’d like to go back to LA when the opportunity arises."


n 1997, California Sunshine was nominated for a BAFTA – not bad for your third short! Did you feel that the industry was finally taking notice of you?

"California Sunshine was definitely a step up for me, I made a tiny bit more money for it than my previous ones, for a start. And it was a bit more of a professional production. It was shot all in one location, so it was controllable. And I had a great crew. I finally felt like I was beginning to learn from some of the mistakes I’d made on previous films. So it was definitely a step up."

How did you fund your earlier films?

"They were all through various schemes – it was basically a case of finding little pockets of money where I could. My advice to a young film director would be to find a good producer, one who’s going to get as much out of it as you are, so that they’re learning their skills by trying to put the pieces of the jigsaw together, while you’re learning your skills by developing scripts and shooting movies."

Is it important to connect with your characters on a personal level?

"I think it’s a really good idea, if you’re making films that have that personal element in some form or other, you’re bound to have some insight into it, more acute than if you’re making something that you have a bit more distance on. It’s not the only way of doing it, it’s not an essential ingredient, it can help. I also think people are capable of using their imaginations and empathy to tell stories about subjects that aren’t quite so close to home."

Would you ever go back to making short films?

"Yes I would actually. If the opportunity came up to do something and I had the time and a good enough idea, I’d love to make shorts again. I think there’s something quite sweet and poetic about shorts that you have to expand on in a longer film and it becomes something heavier."

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Virgin Media Shorts Interviews David Mackenzie

Just a week before a special screening of You Instead at the V festival, Virgin Media Shorts has released part one of their two part interview with director David Mackenzie. While the parts covering You Instead honestly we've heard a bit before, but what is interesting are David's comments on working in short films before making the transition to feature length movies. Quotage of interest:

You made your directing debut at just 26, with short film Dirty Diamonds. Had you worked on films before that?

Yes, I studied film and television at college, so I made a few student movies. I kept trying to break into the film industry one way or another, and I’d been out of college for a year or two before the opportunity to make Dirty Diamonds came along. I’d been a runner before then on a short film in Paris, but Dirty Diamonds was the first thing that had a production and that got screened.

How important do you think it is for aspiring directors to study film? Can film making be learned just through watching movies and experimenting with a camera?

By studying film, you meet people, you debate things. I was very fortunate at college, because I had a job working for a big cinema chain, so I was able to get free tickets to all the cinemas in London. That was almost as important for my education as the teaching itself, being able to see all those movies. Being surrounded by wannabe film makers means you’re talking about film all the time, developing passions, defending your arguments. So yes, you can learn on the job, but there’s something great about being surrounded by other people who share your passion.

Your lead actors in You Instead, Natalia Tena (Harry Potter) and Luke Treadaway (Clash of the Titans), both starred in short films before getting their big breaks. Do you think shorts are a good calling card in the industry?

I made nine short films before I made my first feature. I was itching to get onto the longer format, because you put almost as much energy into a short as you do into a feature, and in the end you haven’t got as much to show for it. I don’t know how else you’d break into the industry, other than with shorts. In the old days, people had to start out making TV commercials, and that’s another way in, but quite often people who direct ads find it quite hard to get into drama later on. Somebody once said to me ‘if you want to do drama, just do drama’ and I sort of followed that – one of my shorts was an arty documentary, but all of the others have been dramas.

So yes, I think it definitely is a calling card but it’s not just that. It’s about learning how to do the job. You have to get good at making films and learning to juggle all the things you have to juggle when you’re a director.

random: on Elvis, wonder if that was the performance (while great, he always is) made him hate playing in England?

Elvis Costello website (he was great on Treme, an hbo series I highly recommend about life in Nola)

Beardless One Day Film

One Day film will be beardless...It is with regret that I can pass along some bad news regarding a film and Jamie Sives. His part as Mr. Godalming aka THE BEARD has been cut from the upcoming Anne Hathaway film. BOOOOOOOOOOO!
Jamie is of course disappointed in this, but as he pointed out that is often how things go in the business, and rest assured he definitely continues to hold the director and his co-stars in high esteem. As such (and for those of us still longing for more of the beard ;) Jamie has treated us to a few new pics on his official IMDB page, include one him of him sporting a rather spectacular beard in Clash of The Titans
lol lol Love You so much Jamie xoxoxox

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Two Major "You Instead" Screenings Next Month in Edinburgh, London

With David Mackenzie's "You Instead" to open in the UK in a short while, early events to see the film are starting to take place. On the heels of the screening at the Tennents brewery, HMV is now offering the chance for TWO EVENTS in September, one to include tickets to a very special after party in London.

First: You Instead to Premiere in Edinburgh, Scotland on 7 September at the HMV Picture house. 18 and older only (sorry) there will also be a special performance by a band at this event. You can get tickets w/your hmv points right here at this link.

Then a few days later A BIG EVENT WITH THE LONDON SCREENING ON 13 SEPTEMBER at the Odeon Cinema in Camden FOLLOWED BY THE AFTERPARTY (Camden Barfly on Chalk Farm Road). Yep that's right TICKETS CAN BE YOURS-snap them up now w/your points quick!

David Mackenzie's You Instead stars Luke Treadaway, Natalia Tena, Alastair Mackenzie, Ruta Getmintas, Gavin Mitchell and is a Sigma Films production under the lead of the very awesome Gillian Berrie.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Take a Bite out of Ewan and Perfect Sense at San Sebastian Film Festival

Well its not quite an invitation to dinner with Chef Ewan McGregor but close ;) as the San Sebastian Film festival will feature dinner and screening of David Mackenzie's "Perfect Sense" next month. Part of a special event at the festival in Spain, the Culinary Cinema will feature 7 films, 7 themes, 7 restaurants and 7 chefs, one for each of the films. The screening of "Perfect Sense" which stars Ewan McGregor and Eva Green, will be accompanied by a meal from Illara of San Sebastian, prepared by Josean Eizmendi, owner and chef well known for his excellent servings from the grill. AWESOME! As a blatant foodie, I think this is fantastic idea (esp given the high concentration of Michelin rated restaurants in the city). The festival says of Chef Eizmendi:
Josean Eizmendi
Today the Illarra restaurant is a must in the world of the grill, an evolving technique sending strong ripples through the sector of which Josean is a recognised, prizewinning author. An inquisitive, outgoing chef who loves to teach those who delight in his food and refuses to offer anything but the best.

The festival runs 16-24 September, with tickets becoming available in a few weeks; updates on that to follow.

FB page Illarra

Bonus: Just because, in case you missed the earlier tweets, here are a few pics of David Mackenzie, a man of definite taste, enjoying himself and a glass of wine to boot at the recent Motovun Film Festival where he was a judge and screened Perfect Sense.