INSHORT Film Festival 2018
‘Another Sunny Day’
Imagine how life must be for someone whose skin has no protection whatsoever from the sun. And now imagine living in a country that averages over 80% sunshine during any given year. Welcome to Paulus's life in Namibia.
Hi Tim thanks for talking to TNC, are there nerves ahead of the screening?
There’s always butterflies. It’s an emotional moment when you share a film.
InShort Film Festival aims to promote global discussion, how important is it for you as a filmmaker to be part of this type of film festival?
Often I can’t attend the screenings because Namibia is a far-off place. Fortunately, festivals such as InShort bridges the geographical gap, and the audience in London can briefly experience what life is like in my home country.
Tell me a little bit about Another Sunny Day, what was the inspiration behind this film?
With "Another Sunny Day" I wanted to make a film that touches the audience and leaves them with an emotional connection to a person with albinism - living in a very sunny country.
One morning I drove back home from the gym. The sun started rising above the horizon. It was bright. I didn't have any sunglasses and the visor in my car was broken, so I had to just brave it. At that moment while evading the blinding rays of the sun, I tried to imagine how a person who has no pigmentation must feel. Especially in this country, where the sun is almost always present. And so the idea for "Another Sunny Day" was born.
After that early morning drive, I made contact with the Albino Care Organization and met the protagonist Paulus for the first time. I spoke to him about wanting to make a film that gives a different perspective on sunshine in this country, and immediately he came on board and shared his experience. From the exchanges, with Paulus, I developed the guiding script that would become the non-fiction film "Another Sunny Day."
What were the biggest challenges you encountered in making this film?
To tell the story of sunshine in Namibia, we had to capture the sun at various stages during its journey through the sky, meaning we couldn’t film the entire story on one day, but instead dispersed the filming over seven days. “Another Sunny Day” is completely self-funded. So making the movie was a balancing act of the passion needed to tell the story & the cost implication thereof.
"The very first short film entitled “Daydreaming of Reality" was more about me learning to tell a simple story."
How much has your style and the approach to your filmmaking changed since your debut?
Wow. Quite a bit hey. I made my very first short film in the year 2000. Back then I had just graduated from university with a degree in literature. I had no idea how to begin telling a story using film. But I knew it was the storytelling potential of the medium that I was excited about. The combination of visuals, music, and dialogue. The very first short film entitled “Daydreaming of Reality" was more about me learning to tell a simple story. Over the years my goal has been to narrow the gap between the audience of my films and my intentions as a storyteller.
How would you describe Another Sunny Day in three words?
Sunshine’s Dark Side
What has the experience of making this film been like for you?
Working together with the protagonist Paulus in bringing his story to screen allowed me to get a new insight into in Namibia. I developed a greater understanding of how hectic the sun can be. I mean, it’s beautiful, especially because we have breathtaking sunsets almost every day. But, if you have to evade the sun as much as possible, living in Namibia can be a curse. It all depends on what you make of the cards you’ve been dealt, and Paulus who finds beauty in the sun is an example to many of us who’d rather complain about the little worries we have instead of facing them head-on.
"Sunshine can be sought after and cherished by a lot of people..."
Will you continue to explore experimental filmmaking?
Not sure if my current film project qualifies as experimental. I’ve wrapped principal photography on my debut feature entitled “#LANDoftheBRAVEfilm”, tracing the story of Maisie Williams, a tough policewoman with one hell of a dodgy past. We’re about to enter post-production and should finalize it in the first quarter of 2019. The experimental aspect of the film is the title, a hashtag and if you search for #LANDoftheBRAVEfilm you’ll find more story on social media, from behind the scenes or from character biography or the backstory of a prop.
And finally, what do you hope people will take away from this film?
A different perspective on the sun. Sunshine can be sought after and cherished by a lot of people, but what does it really mean if you live in a very sunny place and your skin has little or no protection from the sun. How would you feel?