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18th BFI Future Film Festival, 2024

"International festivals like Future Film Festival are particularly important because I think cinema should be able to traverse all cultures and areas of the world."
when all is said & done

Naturally, he fell in love with film and went to study it in NY. There Satchel fell deeply in love with someone. For his own selfish healing, he set out to make a film that captured some feeling of that relationship, calling it when all is said & done. 

Hi Satchel, thank you for talking to TNC. How does it feel to be at the BFI Future Film Festival with when all is said & done?

Thanks for the opportunity. It’s nice to be a part of something worldwide. Looking through all the films that were selected, and all the personalities I see. It’s beautiful and inspiring. I love watching something and then having the chance to get to know the person behind it. Hopefully, we can all make some good connections and find the next story to tell.

You grew up in Burbank, California and studied in New York, how influential were these places in shaping your passion for film?

It’s hard to say. Burbank, being the studio hub it is, had a major impact on me as a kid. Movies felt so magical and surreal, but it was always a part of life around me. As for New York, I can’t even count the number of films that made me obsessed with the place. I wanted to live there as long as I can remember. But at the same time, my passion for film comes from my parents. It was always in my house and I feel like if I grew up somewhere else, I’d still be addicted to the screen. Being (partially) named after Woody Allen and Spike Lee’s kids, I feel like NYC was a part of me before I ever lived there. It’s really a special madhouse. It’s all turned into a nice blend of big city dreams and suburban simplicity.

How important are festivals like Future Film Festival in creating a platform for short films and emerging filmmakers?

I don’t know to be honest. Very? It’s great to be able to showcase your work amongst others in your age/experience bracket. At the end of the day, it’s all about sharing. International festivals like Future Film Festival are particularly important because I think cinema should be able to traverse all cultures and areas of the world. It’s a language and we’re all just learning how to speak it. Being both in person and virtual, hopefully they succeed in letting our work reach and touch someone somewhere in the world. Even the prospect of meeting a director you want to work with in the future is so cool.

What more can be done to offer short films more visibility to audiences outside of the festivals circuit?

Support independent cinemas!! And to the independent cinemas, support us!! Have short showing nights. Invite people to curate their own little festivals. Get the conversations started and the social mixers going. We all have our phones and Vimeo and YouTube. There’s millions of shorts to find on the internet. I was discussing with a couple filmmaker friends of mine the prospect of making a streaming service solely for short films. There’d be a dedicated section for up and coming filmmakers and early works of future heavyweights. That sort of thing. Don’t steal my idea unless you’re gonna do a good job though haha...but yeah, generally, I’m a big advocate for doing things in person.

Can you tell me how when all is said & done came about, did you have any apprehensions about making a film that takes its inspiration from your past relationship?

I needed an intention to make my undergrad thesis film. I’m not really the type to find someone else’s story and go tell it, that’s what I like acting for. And no disrespect to people that are able to do that, that’s dope. I just like writing to feel like a pursuit. I’m chasing something inside myself and if I can transform it into a piece of writing or a film, I guess it’s like I found it. I just don’t see the point of putting so much work and money into something unless you truly feel connected to it. So, I kinda had a reality check and realized the only thing I was certain of was that I did not like how that relationship sat with me. If there was some way that I could get that knot in my heart to loosen up, I was willing to expose myself, reopen painful memories, and revisit dark places. I was definitely worried about portraying myself as a hero and my former partner as a villain or vice versa. I also knew it was just going to be a long and dicult process.


What’s the most challenging aspect of making a film like when all is said and done, and looking back is there anything that you would have done / shot differently?

The most challenging aspect was the writing. Production may feel more intense or stressful or impossible at times, but the writing is where the work starts. The film doesn’t have huge fight scenes with lots of dialogue. It doesn’t have a clear physical antagonist or any conventional structure for a short film, but it took an unbelievable amount of time to reach a point where every scene was as simple and crucial as possible. Barebones. Raw. I had to write a lot of things out that I was just processing personally, then share it with my peers, then have to scrap it. Sometimes I was fighting to keep things that I knew needed to be there, other times I was struggling to box dozens of moments into one. Looking back, I wouldn’t have done anything dierently. It is what it is.

Was it cathartic for you to look back at this time in your life?

This was the single most cathartic creative experience I’ve ever had. It’s actually insane. The way I felt about everything when I first started to write versus when I was sitting in the editing booth with my former partner and showing them the final product. We could sit back and laugh at it all. The film let me keep everything I wanted to and get rid of everything I didn’t.

What was the most interesting thing you discovered about yourself during the making of when all is said & done?

I’m willing to do some crazy sh*t for love.

Was there any one film you saw growing up that left an impression on you and helped guide you towards making films?

I think probably something from Spike or Woody. They’d look right into the camera and tell you what they were thinking. Music everywhere. Relationships and people changing or staying the same. I’ll just say She’s Gotta Have It. Sneakers, Sex, Love. Also that the film is in black and white and the characters/story comes before the camera, literally and metaphorically. Spike just knows where to put it, and sometimes he’ll have fun, be it dolly or crane shots.

What filmmakers inspire you?

Wong Kar-Wai, Steven Spielberg, Wes Anderson, Alex Garland, Jonathan Glazer, Lenny Abrahamson, Ben Stiller, M. Night Shyamalan, Agnes Varda, David Fincher, Denis Villeneuve, John Carpenter, Ari Aster, Richard Linklater, Charlotte Wells, Edgar Wright, Peter Jackson...the list goes on forever

"The way I felt about everything when I first started to write versus when I was sitting in the editing booth with my former partner and showing them the final product."

What does when all is said & done say about you as a filmmaker and the stories you want to tell in the future?

I’m interested in doing things very dierent from when all is said & done, but I hope it says that I care about the performances more than anything else. I’ll always want to be a part of intimate, complex, sad love stories. I like feeling close to characters. I love something dark. As a filmmaker, I suppose that I understand this form of art is powerful, precious, and to be cared for gently.

Is there any advice/tips you could offer a fellow filmmaker about to start their filmmaking journey?

Only do it if it’s gonna be fun because at some point it won’t be and then you have to be able to remind yourself that it’s just supposed to be fun. Also, watch films. Nonstop. Watch things you hate and break down why you hate it. Watch things you love and break down why you love it. Read scripts and then see how things are translated onscreen. Write your own feature, no matter how sh*t it is, just do it, and then ask yourself if you’d watch that. Then do it again.

You’re now based in London, which isn’t as romantic a film city as NY, but it’s a great place for an adventure. What’s been the most surprising thing about the city you’ve discovered?

Hahaha no it is not, but London has its own charm. I’m surprised all the time. I don’t think I’ve quite grasped it yet. Maybe the most surprising thing is that generally speaking, people are way more respectful in the cinema than in the states. This one time a sta member woke me up mid-film because I had fallen asleep and told me to stop talking.

What has been the best advice you’ve been given?

See space, attack it. Fill the void. Make the thing that you feel is missing. Do it yourself.

And finally, what do you hope audiences will take away from when all is said & done?

Whatever they want. If that’s nothing, then nothing. If that’s sadness, then sadness. Joy, then joy. But hopefully it’s something. Anything.

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