Welcome back to“Creatives & Covid”, our series where we delve into the lives of various creatives to see how they are coping and adjusting to their creative and busy lives during this pandemic. Today we’re showcasing Volume 2 which features the lovely Rebecca Williams aka Becx who took the time out of her busy schedule to answer a few questions about her recently premiered movie “Out of Many”.
For those who didn’t watch the film or if you live under a rock and have never heard of Becx or “Out of Many” before, don’t worry, we’ll bring you up to speed. “Out of Many” is a short film that takes you through the mind of a teenage Jamaican girl named Asha who encounters a traumatic experience which ultimately jolts her into reality. From specially picked lighting, to music that sets the tone of every scene and actors who bring across the message in a way that feels both genuine and authentic to a Jamaican lifestyle, “Out of Many” is not just a film, it's an experience that was all written and directed by Becx alongside her lovely team of other talented creatives.
Every good story should leave you curious, with a new perspective, maybe, or simply leaving the audience wanting to know more, which is why we knew we had to get the inside scoop from the Becx herself about “Out of Many” as it touched on many topics which aren’t often shown on screen albeit on Jamaican screens at that. So we asked her some questions and here’s what she had to say:
What was it like to create a film in the Caribbean, when was it done and do you think it would have gone differently if done in America?
“We shot this film in the first weekend of January, so we were lucky to have wrapped production on the short pre-pandemic. At first, my professors were pushing me toward making a film in America and I do believe it would have been easier to do so but it would not have been as satisfying.”
Did you choose the cast and how did you know that this person would be perfect for the role?
“Yes, I chose the cast along with producers Storm Saulter, Darin Tennent and first Assistant Director Lydia Hall. We held open auditions so anyone could come and try it out, I even got some auditions via email. I think it is more of a search for someone to bring a character to life than it is a search for perfection. I’m really happy about the casting on this film, each person brought their own knowledge to these characters and that made them even more interesting.”
What was it like working with Storm Saulter, renowned filmmaker from “Sprinter”, and how did you guys create a functioning team that works well together?
“Working with Storm was great because we have similar artistic instincts and I was able to learn a lot from him about the film landscape in Jamaica. When putting together the team, it was really important to us that we found people who were passionate about filmmaking and who were open to try new things visually. I feel so lucky to have worked with this crew, everyone was so encouraging and understanding.”
What was your favorite scene to film, or favorite scenes?
“My favourite scene to film was the scene with Asha and her “love” interest, Jacob, in the grass.I feel like we were really having fun on set especially at that time.”
"My favourite scene to watch is in Kirsten's bedroom, Asha’s best friend, because the lighting is just so delicious!"
Speaking of lighting, we asked her about the reasoning behind the colour choices made when making a scene lit and she had this to say:
"Every colour on the screen is intentional and serves a specific narrative purpose. The lighting is just like sound in terms of its ability to tell a story in conjunction with a picture. Each colour comes with it’s own mood and connotations, it’s used to enhance and reflect Ashas emotions in most cases. I worked with Troy Forrest on lights when we were shooting and then with Darren Scott on post-production colouring. Both of them speak the language of colour which I value highly in a film, I love that I was able to experiment with colour with their help."
The music selection was also top tier and she explained the reasoning behind the musical choices too.
“I had always intended for the music to be another layer of storytelling so working closely with composer Jeremy Ashbourne was very important. I remember we had a five or six hour composing session where we just sat and watched the movie and spoke about what emotions we wanted to evoke from the audience. After that session it didn’t take long before the music was locked. Jeremy has an incredible understanding of and relationship with music, I learned so much from him just by working with him.”
“Out of Many” is actually a final year project by Rebecca and we truly were blown away by this fact. Not only is it professionally produced but it was edited, produced and premiered all while during this crazy time that the world is in. It’s impressive that she was able to execute it well, all while still managing school work and finals. Her creativity alongside the other members of the team really shone brightly with this film which made us curious to know more about who and what influences her, as well as what inspired her when creating and producing this film.
Here’s what we found out: Which directors do you look up to?
“So many! I look up to a range of directors from Khalik Allah to Luca Guadagnino to Solange Knowles. I think what they all have in common is that they are actively experimenting within their chosen genres and creating unique content every time.”
Which films influenced you in any way when creating the film?
“Some of my favourite movies are about youth, so instinctively I looked toward those first. Movies like Palo Alto and Lady Bird gave me a good sense of how youth were being portrayed in film. Euphoria on HBO and even Skins were some TV shows I looked to as well, those shows deal with “grit” and teen angst in such honest ways.”
We also were curious about her experiences since the film’s premier and here’s what she had to say: How has the reception been towards the film and did you imagine it would be received this way?
“The reception of the film has been widely positive, I’m not sure if I expected that. I am glad that people seem to be having more conversations about privilege now.”
What is your favorite thing that has happened to you so far since the release of the film?
“My little cousin is a big fan of the film and told my mom all about his favourite parts, that’s definitley the best moment since the film was released.”
And finally, we asked the big questions that anyone who watched the film or are at this stage in the post and are just dying to know right now: Who is your dream cast to work with?
“I’m not sure if I have a dream cast but I’m always interested in whatever Lakeith Stanfeild does, so I would love to work with him one day.”
Do you think you’ll be making more films later on and are there anymore in the works right now?
“I love this question because I plan to make movies for the rest of my life! I feel like I always have ideas floating around in my head and have a genuine curiosity about life so yes, of course. I do have ideas and projects that I’m pursuing… I like to keep busy.”
And there you have it folks, Creatives and Covid Vol 2 with Rebecca Williams. Make sure to watch the film and to check out Becx on Instagram or Twitter to see her creative journey. If you’d like to hear more about the movie there is an insightful podcast episode by “The Reasoning” on Soundcloud where you can hear from Becx herself as she breaks down the reasoning behind the many creative choices made in the film.
Once again thanks for reading and continue to stay safe and creative. X
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