I was recently accepted to take part in this year’s Scottish Mental Health Arts Festival’s Talking Heads reporter project, which invites people with lived experience of mental health issues to create content for the festival. This can include reviews, interviews, podcasts and video content.
Usually I write for screen, so I thought it would make an interesting change of pace to try my hand at writing a review; something for print only.
Time to get the thesaurus out!
So on Tuesday I visited the Òran Mór to see Hysteria!, a darkly comic political cabaret, with themes of sexism and mental health. It was my first A Play, A Pie and A Pint experience, and I couldn’t have enjoyed it more.
John Perivolaris (producer of Time of the Month) and I (director) were recently offered the opportunity to pitch at Glasgow Short Film Festival, where five filmmakers pitched for a week’s worth of free equipment hire from Production Attic and £400 from GSFF.
Having never done anything like this before, it was a anxiety-inducing thought to get up in front of a panel and audience and say ‘please give us money’ in a much more eloquent way.
But as I had attended an open pitching session at the Glasgow Film Festival the month before, I had copious notes on what to do and what not to do. Although those pitches were for feature films, and ours was a short film, it gave us a rough idea of what a pitch is supposed to look like, and a place to start.
A lot of the pitches showed mood reels, or sizzle reels, if you prefer. These are basically short videos with clips from produced films, that show the tone of your film. They seem to make a pitch stand out, and I wanted to have one.
One problem: We were accepted on Monday, we were pitching on Friday, and I was working 11 hour days in London and travelling back to Glasgow on Thursday. Hmmm. Most people would probably think that editing a video in the short time I had would be silly, and just focus on the pitch itself. But I, apparently, am not most people.
And you know what, I actually managed to do it! It might not have been the most amazing mood reel ever made, but I like it. And we were the only pitch out of five to make use of the screen, and I think that made us stand out.
But we didn’t win.
Nevertheless, here it is for your viewing pleasure: