"I WANTED TO TELL A STORY THAT WAS BASED ON EMOTIVE VISUALS RATHER THAN DIALOGUE. IT WAS IMPORTANT TO ME THAT THE STORY BE TRUE TO ITS SURROUNDINGS."
As We Fell Into The Sun
Winner: Best Director
3rd Papaya Rocks Film Festival Online
As We Fell Into The Sun follows the life of young boy named Vincent and the relationship that he has with the spirit of his grandfather. Shot in Nairobi, Kenya.
Hi Ivory thank you for talking to TNC, how are you holding up during these very strange times?
Hi! I’m good, just taking every day as it comes and trying to remain as creative and positive as possible!
Has this time offered you any creative inspiration?
I’ve definitely found myself trying to make the most of this situation, although sometimes it’s been hard. I’ve been working a lot with musicians and focusing a lot more on my photography. Also planning my next projects to get a start on when restrictions come up, including some more international shorts and an animation series.
There’s been so much time to read, watch a lot of recommended films that have been living on a list in my phone for years and explore some new ideas. Doing this has definitely proven an effective way to get inspired!
Congratulations on having your film selected for the 3rd Papaya Rocks Film Festival, what does it mean to you to be part of such an amazing lineup of short films?
Thank you! I’m really excited to hear what people think about the film. It will be great to watch the other festival selections also, I’m sure there’s going to be lots of inspiring work.
Can you tell me a little bit about As We Fell Into The Sun, how did this film come about?
I flew to Kenya at the end of 2019 as part of a filmmakers initiative. The aim was to explore and create stories that showcased and projected a Kenyan narrative. The first week I arrived, I stayed in a really beautiful commune in Nairobi.
I wanted to tell a story that was based more on emotive visuals than dialogue, it was also important to me that the story be true to its surroundings. I came up with a simple premise, a child who has an imaginary friend that no one else can see. I then found locals who wanted to get involved with the film and that’s when the story really started to unravel. I took inspiration from observing those around me, how the children played in the streets, how the boys played football in the field. With all these different ingredients we made AWFITS!
What were the biggest challenges you faced bringing your film to life?
Shooting in a foreign country where you don’t speak the language is always going to have its difficulties but I’d say the biggest challenge was the difference in approach to production. Being adaptable, communicative and respectful of each other helped to keep everything moving and enabled us to work together effectively.
Looking back is there anything you would have done differently on this film?
If I’d have had the opportunity to stay longer I would have loved to push Vincent’s story further. Explore the relationship with each of his family members and more specifically who his grandfather was to him. I also would have loved to shoot more locations as Nairobi/Kenya is so beautiful, honestly a filmmakers dream!
"I hope that people are able to relate and form a connection in some way with Vincent and his story."
Describe your film in three words?
Childhood, spirit, memory
Where did your passion for filmmaking come from?
Watching too much telly!
What has been some of the best advice you’ve been given?
Shoot the shit out of it haha. You can never have too much footage!
Should filmmakers continue to push the boundaries of the films and stories they want to tell?
Do you have any tips or advice you would offer a fellow filmmaker?
Be open to suggestions and improvised moments.
And finally, what do you hope people will take away from As We Fell Into The Sun?
I hope that people are able to relate and form a connection in some way with Vincent and his story. I would love for those who watch to come away with a real appreciation for how important childhood, memory and imagination is!