Your new movie Hush
- in a few words, what is it about?
Hush is an experimental
psychological thriller short film concerning the subject:
pro-life/pro-choice decisions involved with rape between young marital
What were your
sources of inspiration when writing Hush,
and is any of this based on personal experience?
were two primary sources of inspiration pertaining to this piece: First, a
woman I dated out of college for a year or so was severely raped after she
graduated high school and the struggles we shared but couldnít overcome.
The fears and doubts; more so her story stuck with me for a few years.
This experience inspired the story Hush when I started writing.
second source came from the film Nymphomaniac, Vol. II by Lars von
Trier. One scene from Vol. II, which in my opinion was one of the
most impactful scenes of the film. The protagonist discovers one character
to be a pedophile but no other characters knew and she informed how he was
a hero - because although his deepest desire was to be with a child, he
never succumbed to this desire, this is what made him a hero - the fight
everyday against his own temptations. The scene really stuck with me
because I was in the middle of writing Hush while viewing it.
Thatís where I found purpose behind certain actions leading up to the
climax of the film.
is a movie completely devoid of dialogue or even incidental sounds - was
this a decision you made at the very beginning of developing the story, or
did this concept creep in only later?
original intention when writing Hush was to make it a silent film. I
recorded the sound of movements and actions but not dialogue to see the
direction the audience would be taken. After the film was cut and we had
the sound effects in and used the audio that was taken; my sound designer,
Matthew Amadio, showed me a cut with just the original score. After
viewing, we found it to be a more effective experience and chose that
How does making a
dialogue-free movie differ from just making a regular sound movie, what
are the challenges but maybe also advantages?
making a dialogue-free film, most viewers would think you cut out sound
altogether; however, you always want to take sound while filming because
our ears still recognize sounds that should be made by the characterís
actions or surroundings present when watching a scene on screen. Main
challenges would be the actors' performances are more important through
actions within the scene rather than a little movement or standing and
delivering a line where emotion, emphasis, and articulation are vital.
Sound effects in post are very important to have where needed, especially
if sound was poorly recorded during production. In concerns of advantages,
the main focus is not based on effective dialogue leading the story -
donít have to be concerned with line delivery, timing, and emotional
responses between characters. The interactions and reactions between the
actors through body language is key for the storyís progression.
you tell us about your overall directorial approach to your story at hand?
this piece, I wanted the main focus to be the characterís actions on
screen portraying the story. I didnít want the audience having the
capability to hide from the intentions and symbolism of scenes through
dialogue or distracting sound effects; however, the piece needed a solid
original score, which Matthew Amadio provided, to assist with the
emotional ranges of each scene. This allowed through the original music,
editing, color grading, and performances to direct the audience through
the experience of Hush.
talk about your cast, and why exactly these people?
took many auditions to get the cast on point with the characters. The
character of the young girl - Sydney Freihofer acted in another film I produced
years before, did a great job on set, and was happy to perform again for
this piece. Constance Reshey and I worked together on All Over Again
where she played lead character Victoria, did a wonderful job both on that
film and this one - being able to play a smaller role gave her an
opportunity to focus deeper into the character of Marge which she wanted.
Marion Tention as the character Danny was a novice actor pursuing film and
had a solid audition. The role of Mark and Betty we experienced issues
concerning the controversial theme of the piece along with nudity for the
role of Betty. We auditioned about three actors each: Erik Searle and
Kristin Ann Teporelli were best suited for these particular roles and contained a mature
perspective for the material they would be working in. The role of
Suzanna, we auditioned about six to eight actresses and couldnít find
one to fit or had issues with the climax this character experiences. I
received a referral for Melissa Damas, she made a trip down and auditioned
for the role, expressed her concerns and enthusiasm due to not being
offered roles as diverse with a message she believed in. The role Jeremy
we auditioned several people and many turned down the role due to the
controversy behind it, especially in the climax. We finally found one
actor who accepted the role and remained with the production through all
rehearsals and one day stopped answering my phone calls. But I knew
Anthony Scanish from another film I helped produce, brought him in for an
audition - did a good job and it took him about two weeks to make a
decision after the role was offered to accept it.
few words about the shoot as such, and the on-set atmosphere?
on-set atmosphere of Hush had its moments of tension where
performances carefully observed required many takes and very enjoyable
moments where we could make jokes and laugh to release from the tension of
the more difficult scenes.
$64-question of course, where can your movie be seen?
the moment while Hush is on the festival circuit itís not open on
a public forum. Contact me directly so I can show you the film or once
itís off the circuit it will be open for public viewing.
you can tell us about audience and critical reception of Hush?
has screened in a couple theaters at film festivals and quite a few
critics have viewed the piece in private - if anyone would like to read
the critic reviews they can be found on the filmís IMDb page. What I
appreciate about art is everyone creates their own interpretations upon
viewing a film, painting, or photograph - Hush is a good example to
serve this purpose. As the creator I left bread crumbs to lead the viewer
through this particular world of drama and twisted fantasies. Discussing
thoughts and purposes of the film with audiences and critics I have heard
so many different interpretations of the piece separate from my original
intentions for the message. Itís pretty cool.
future projects you'd like to share?
I have an OCD short film titled Inside Jonathan Fox almost wrapped
up with sound design and the original score then it will hit the festival
circuit for 2019. I will be going back into production within the next six
months to produce a LGBTQ short film, Whoever was Lying in this
website, Facebook, whatever else?
Feeling lucky ?
any of my partnershops yourself
for more, better results ?
The links below
will take you
Please see links below to
view Hush's IMDb page and my
Facebook fanpage. If you would like to
view the film, send me a private message.
Hush IMDb page link:
Joseph McGovern Facebook fanpage link: https://www.facebook.com/josephamcgovern/
Anything else you're
dying to mention and I have merely forgotten to ask?
Rape - although a very
uncomfortable subject to think about, itís very important to discuss.
Itís a very serious issue worldwide. In the midst of the #metoo movement
there are many victims pushed into darkness, feel alone and abandoned or
trapped, or have shame and canít bring this type of traumatic experience
to light. The response ďNoĒ should be respected in every form of the
No matter what stage
youíre in with creating films or any type of project pertaining to the
arts. Itís not about the accolades, itís not about the ďmoneyĒ,
itís not about the ďgreat jobsĒ or acclaim. Create the art to make
an impact - it doesnít have to be a feel good positive vibe either; it
could be a dirty, disgusting project to demonstrate needed change within
the theme. Create the art for yourself - not for others, no one will ever
appreciate the project you create as much as you. Most importantly -
create the project through completion: donít stop, if you take a step
back make sure you take two steps forward, it will be the most difficult
project you will undertake but never give up when itís difficult, never
quit. We have enough quitters in this world - be stronger, perceiver, and
do it right. You will never be disappointed.;
Thank you for the
opportunity and allowing me to discuss Hush and the project in
for the interview!