Closed Doors is a must see at Flickerfest 2020
Cleverman’s Hunter Page-Lochard explores the effect of grief in his new collaboration with Carter Fred Simpkin, Closed Doors.
How does it feel to have your film Closed Doors selected to screen at the 2019 Flickerfest?
It’s a great privilege to have Closed Doors screen at Flickerfest 2020. It will be my second film with the festival, which truly makes it feel like home. I’m Sydney bred and a Bondi alumni, so it's very special to have my film in the program.
We don’t often see Aboriginal characters in horror/drama genre – this will be new for many filmgoers – how do you think they’ll react?
I think filmgoers will react just fine and quite normal. If anything, we get to see more of a range within our local acting talent. We are all capable of so much more.
You’ve already made a name as a celebrated Australian Actor, recently as a lead in the Cleverman series. Can you tell us about why you decided to make the transition into directing?
I’ve always had the passion to write and direct and I’ve always had a story to tell. I feel like I’ve been waiting for the right time as I still had and have a lot to learn. Acting gave me a front row seat to all the directing experience I could have. The time is right.
You co-write and co-directed Closed Doors with Carter Fred Simpkin. How did this collaboration come about?
Carter and I have been collaborating for a while now, and we are starting a business together that will focus and specialise on media content, with a constant flow of projects to be made for the wider community by the younger generation.
Closed Doors is just the first stone thrown in the pond. We have many more projects we want to collaborate on. One thing we have learnt is trust - not just between each other but with crew and cast – trust is very important as it’s a team effort in order to get the final product.
The score, sound design, and the abstract world in Closed Doors is really breathtaking. Can you tell us how you developed these elements?
Carter and I always wanted to make a film that had abstract elements in it. We wanted to push the envelope and tell a story through visual motifs as well as action and dialogue. A lot can be told through a single frame. Growing up with Bangarra Dance Theatre and the theatre world has taught me so much about perception, lighting and creating images in order to symbolise many themes.
This knowledge has helped with creating some if not all of the images in Closed Doors. When it comes to sound, Carter and I both understood the importance of sound and composition. Especially for a film of this genre. This experience was the first where we worked with a composer and got the best out of them in order to deliver not just our passion onto the screen but the composers. It all had to be collaborative otherwise it just wouldn’t have worked.
What did you enjoy most about directing Closed Doors?
The best part about filming was the learning. Learning to co-direct with someone and be on the same page most of the time, and to experience a crew who is doing their best for your vision. It’s been truly surreal. I’m forever grateful.
Festival Opening Night Screening & Party 2020
Friday 10 January 2020, arrive 7.45pm for 8.15pm start
Best of Australian 3 – 2020 stream
Saturday 11 January 2020, 8.45pm | Runtime 111mins
Image: Behind the scenes on Closed Doors. Photo by Joseph Mayers.