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"Getting audiences to turn up for shorts can be a real challenge. Its an accolade to the amazing films we are screening along side that its sold out." - Tara


Tara Trangmar
Tracey Lopes & 
Writer Director & Producer

March 15, 2024  


In a world where men can get pregnant, Owen wakes up with more than a hangover to fix.

BETTER is screening with The Girls’ Room by Tracey Lopes, Does Your Condom Make you Fat by Sophie King & written by Danielle Papamichael, Fifty Four Days by Cat White, and Period Drama by Evie Fehilly as part of Girls in Film & Kusini Productions FEMME FLICKS at Genesis Cinema Friday 15th March, 2024.

Hi Tracey & Tara, thanks for talking to us about your film The Girls’ Room, are you excited for this Friday’s screening at Genesis Cinema?


Tracey (writer / director): Absolutely! Really looking forward to getting eyes on the film and getting to watch the other films screening too.


What does it mean to you to be part of Femme Flicks and screening your short with such an amazing selection of short films?


Tara (producer): We’re thrilled that the program has had such a popular reception with tickets selling out days ahead of the screening. Getting audiences to turn up for shorts can be a real challenge. It’s an accolade to the amazing films we are screening along side that it’s sold out.


Any nerves ahead of the screening?


Tara: It’s always exciting to know you’re going to share in the experience of an audience watching your work. Any nerves I get about a screening are a useful tool, it reminds me how much I care about the film.


Your documentary short MOTHERLAND won Best New Talent Documentary Award at the 2022 BFI Future Film Festival, did you imagine your short would get this type of response?


Tracey: Not at all! Motherland was my first short film, it was me learning how to use filmmaking as a tool. It simply came out of my passion for wanting to learn the craft and also use it as a form of therapy to explore my identity. At the time I made it I didn’t even know what film festivals were so the fact that the film went on to have a good festival run and win the award was amazing.


Did winning this award, and the attention an award like this brings, add any additional pressure on you as you started working on your next project?


Tracey: It didn’t add any pressure but it really opened up doors and connections for me that would lead to getting The Girls’ Room made.


How did The Girls’ Room come about, what inspired your screenplay?


Tracey: The Girls’ Room came about during lockdown funnily enough. It was a really dark time, trying to understand COVID-19 and witnessing the spotlight on police brutality with the killing of George Floyd. It got to a point where I just stopped watching the news and got off social media. Around that time I was catching up with my older sisters and we were giggling about the time in our lives when we all shared a room and how one sister would be on the phone to her boyfriend while the other was crying about something and the other trying to sneak out. We were amazed at how we were all able to survive and coexist in the tiny space. So I left that call with a spark of an idea, three sisters all in different stages of adolescence sharing a small bedroom. With it being lockdown I was particularly intrigued by the idea of being confined to a room and so with the desire to escape I sat down and got writing, I escaped to that room when I was a teenager to discover all the things that could come out of the confines of four walls.


How different was your approach to this film compared to your documentary short?


Tracey: I’d say I prepped a lot more for The Girls’ Room, especially since it was my first narrative short film I really wanted to be prepared. I created a lot of materials like mood boards and manifestos for myself and our HODs as well. I also read a lot, especially books on working with actors like Judith Weston’s Directing Actors and watched a lot of filmmaking Masterclasses as well.


What more can be done to platform women’s voices and experiences within the film industry?


Tara: So much! Writing women not just inspiriting but relatable characters on screen is so important. Bringing under represented voices to the mainstream cinema is also vital for visibility. It sounds so simple but seeing a woman like yourself, do something amazing on screen can have a huge impact on the viewer’s idea of themselves. We’re moving in the right direction, but there’s still so much more to do.


Where did your passion for filmmaking come from?


Tracey: My older brother had a massive collection of DVDs which exposed me to a whole array of movies. And from then I was always interested in the mechanics behind putting a film together.


And what one piece of advice would you offer someone wanting to get into filmmaking?


Tara: It’s all about collaboration. Make friends with everyone, you simply can’t make good film’s on your own and there are so many phenomenal people in this industry to befriend. 


Finally, what would you like your audiences to take away from The Girls’ Room?


Tracey: I hope the film evokes nostalgia and joy!

"It sounds so simple but seeing a woman like yourself, do something amazing on screen can have a huge impact on the viewers idea of themselves."

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