Your new movie Adventures
of a Happy Homeless Man - in a few words, what is it about?
Itís about a mischievous man who pursues his passion for music and
acting after he lost his job, his marriage and his home.
what extent can you identify with Bobo the Hobo, and is any of the movie
based on personal experiences and the like?
My life has
been full of ups and downs. I wanted to make a movie about someone who has
hit rock bottom, but still being optimistic in life. Bobo the Hobo is
someone who has lost everything but still full of energy and confidence to
chase his dreams.
sources of inspiration when writing Adventures
of a Happy Homeless Man?
Characters of people that
I know in real life.
Why choose the
mockumentary approach to tell your story? And on a technical side, what
are the advantages and challenges filming that way?
Creatively, I wanted it to look and feel Ďraw and freshí, hence I
chose to film it mockumentary style.
The advantages were mostly time-saving and cost-saving. You donít
need so many crew members and so many complicated setups when filming this
way. It certainly saved time and money.
The main challenge that I encountered in this one was to find actors
who are used to long takes and able to improvise on the spot. I
intentionally chose actors with strong theatre background for this one.
Another challenge was continuity issue is post-production. There was a
script, but I told the actors that they could use their own words as long
as they stick to the conversation topics in the script. So each shot had
slightly different words in the dialogue, and it made editing difficult.
few words about Adventures
of a Happy Homeless Man's distinct brand of humour?
like writing dark humor loaded with cheeky and satirical jokes. Some of
the jokes can be seen as a little naughty or offensive, but with a reason.
Exaggeration of something that people can relate to in their daily lives.
talk about your key cast, and why exactly these people?
I worked with Felino Dolloso (Bobo the Hobo) in my first feature film
The Devilís 6 Commandments, and I found that heís a great actor
to work with. Aside from having a tremendous acting talent, heís humble
and very easy to work with.
Some of the supporting actors were people I worked with before in my
previous project. Rico Banderas (Alan) always brings strong screen
presence in any scenes in my movies. Heís so memorable that everyone
always mentions his characters and his scenes.
Some others, like Eliza St John (Gemma), Demitra Alexandria (Tori) and
Iwona Abramowicz (Denise) were people I had not worked with before. I cast
them based on their stage acting experience. I knew that I needed actors
that could do long takes and are fabulous at improvising.
Aleksandra Voronina (Felicia) was a fresh face. This movie was her
first screen acting experience, and she was confident and full of energy
on screen. She beat a few more talented actresses in the audition.
can you tell us about the shoot as such, and the on-set atmosphere?
wanted to keep it as close to a documentary style as possible. So, not
only the actors were acting, but the crew were acting as well, despite
being off-screen. Whenever we shoot an exterior scene, people in the
street thought we were making a real documentary and Bobo was a real
you can tell us about critical and audience reception of Adventures
of a Happy Homeless Man?
The responses have been
extremely positive from the 25-54 year olds. People under 24 may prefer
Hollywood blockbusters with all the special effects that we canít
afford, and people over 55 may think the style of the film is too
post-modern. Overall, Iím quite happy with the responses we got.
Any future projects
you'd like to share?
I recently did jury duty for a court
case the first time. The experience serving as a juror was very
interesting. Iím planning to do a film about a court case.
What got you into filmmaking in the
first place, and did you receive any formal education on the subject?
was 5 when my parents took me to the cinema for the first time. We saw a
John Woo film which was probably not appropriate for a 5 year old, but I
had a great time, and I became addicted to watching films since then. I
studied Media Arts Production in university. It was fun.
can you tell us about your filmwork prior to Adventures
of a Happy Homeless Man?
I was heavily influenced by Quentin Tarantino, Guy Ritchie and Edgar
Wright in my late teens and throughout my 20s. So all my films (7 shorts
and a feature) before Adventures
of a Happy Homeless Man were all
crime/action/dark comedy films.
After I turned 30, I became more and more influenced by works of
Richard Linklater, Spike Jonze and John Carney. Adventures
of a Happy Homeless Man is my first film without violence.
How would you describe
yourself as a director?
I like to make films that are
entertaining but also thought-provoking.
Filmmakers who inspire you?
Linklater, John Carney, Edgar Wright.
Dogs, Fight Club, Begin Again, Life is Beautiful,
... and of course, films you really
Now You See Me & Now You See Me 2. These films
were actually pretty cool, until the extremely-forced endings, which made
everything else leading to the final 10-15 minutes not making any
Your/your movie's website, Facebook, whatever
Anything else you're dying to mention and I habe
merely forgotten to ask?
Yes. I really want to say
that Mike Haberfelner is a cool guy and his website is awesome!
Thanks for the interview!
No problem. My pleasure.