Short Film Corner 2022
THE YOUNG ONE-TWO
May 22, 2022
A young boxer squares off against blood, love, and chess.
Hi Peter, it’s great to get to talk with you, how have you been keeping after everything that’s been happening, have you been able to remain positive and creative at least?
We didn’t win the war by getting depressed. I have found it is best to keep calm and carry on. I have remained creative as always.
What does it mean for you to be in the Cannes Short Film Corner section with The Young One-Two and what do you hope to take away from this experience?
For me, being in the Cannes SFC is a welcome sign that I am on the right track with my career. It does not mean, “I made it” but it is encouraging to say the least. I hope to meet other filmmakers and make lasting connections which I intend to cultivate in years to come.
How vital are platforms like Cannes SFC in championing and supporting independent short filmmakers?
So far the SFC has been a great way to open up more doors. Recognizing filmmakers for their short work definitely helps to get more talent noticed in this industry. After all, Martin Short once appeared in a 48 hour film project winner.
The Young One-Two has won multiple awards, what has it meant to get this type of response to your film?
Winning awards never gets old. It’s especially wonderful that a team as talented as ours is getting so much recognition from competitions. We’ve won for best costume design, choreography, editing, writing, and many more.
Can you tell me how The Young One-Two came about, what was the inspiration behind your film?
'The Young One Two' came about through the 48 Hour Film Project in Pittsburgh PA in the United States. My good friend Benjamin T. Carlucci, was putting another team together for the 48 and asked me to direct the film. This was my third time on a 48HFP team. The first time I was the head writer, and the other two times I directed. Our team won in Pittsburgh every year. This brought us to the finals at Filmapalooza. This year our team made it into the top 10 so that we could come to the SFC at Cannes. Both times I directed, it was the best team I have ever worked with, and they were put together by my good friend and longtime collaborator Benjamin T. Carlucci. I always have to thank him and the rest of the team for some of the best filmmaking experiences I have had to date.
What was it about Susannah Enslow, Christopher Roberts and Benjamin T Wilson’s screenplay that interested you so much as a filmmaker?
The story was written one Friday night. I and the department heads were in the brainstorming sessions and we came up with the beat sheet. When we had agreed on the story, the writers split to each type up an initial draft. These writers were, Peter Brady, Susannah Enslow, Christopher Roberts, and Jess Bachelor. When they had completed their drafts they sent them to our team leader Benn, who read the drafts, and then penned the final draft informed by those other scripts. It was an unusual way of writing but it worked out great and saved us a lot of time. What interested me personally about the story was how uplifting it was. A lot of us have gone through some darker times and having that escape with an endearing love story about characters you root for was a breath of fresh air for everything. I also love the satisfying twist at the end.
"Early on you have to do practically everything which helps to inform your communication with department heads in the future."
What was the hardest scene for you to film?
The most difficult scene was also the most fun. The climactic boxing match when everything comes together had a built set, extras, special effects, makeup, choreography, and all stays focused on the characters and their performances. It was the most technically difficult, but our team was ready and functioning at full capacity at that point in the day. So it was a lot, but I’m proud to say everyone handled it admirably It’s a wonderful sequence.
As a filmmaker how flexible do you allow yourself once you start shooting?
It is best to have a plan. But you have to be flexible. The best way to make good decisions is to be very in tune with the story. A great idea for a line might mess up continuity of the relationship with a character in the following scene. Even when you have finished filming and are cutting the film together, you have to understand that you might have to cut the first few minutes of a scene and have it end 30 seconds before you intended. You’re dealing with nature and a lot of people. You need to be able to roll with punches and keep the story together even if it changes.
What is the message you want to convey with The Young One-Two and do you think you have achieved this?
There are a lot of messages in our film. Messages of not giving up, finding victory in defeat, being open minded to learning. In a lot of ways the film is supposed to be a positive entertaining experience which we believed people would enjoy seeing after so much tough darkness. In my estimation when I hear the applause and receive the awards, we achieved that.
Have you always had a passion for filmmaking?
How much has your approach to your work changed since you started out?
My approach is always developing. I would say the biggest change is being able to rely on more people. Early on you have to do practically everything which helps to inform your communication with department heads in the future. However, I have always done my research, and most of my work has at least a little humour in it.
Do you have any tips or advice you would offer a fellow filmmaker?
If I were to offer advice to filmmakers, it would be to commit yourself to another activity/hobby/craft/subject that does not obviously relate to filmmaking or involve a screen. Leather working, metal working, gardening, marital arts, mathematics, history, being a musician, anything. Do this, and you will find endless rewards.
And finally, what would you like audiences to take away from The Young One-Two?
When audiences see The Young One Two, I want them to know that there are people in Pittsburgh who can make films audiences everywhere will want to see. I want to knock their socks off, give them a show, and then give them some more.