Filmmaker Interview by Chris Olson
The director behind the charming and brilliant stop motion film, Ghostboy, Jonathan Brooks took the tilme to catch up with us about his love of films and being a filmmaker in 2016.
Can you tell us a little bit about your film background and how this led you to direct Ghostboy?
In 2010 I set up my own production company specialising in corporate video so that I could continue my passion for filmmaking as a career. Since then I have directed 5 short films and worked with countless corporate clients. However animation is something I have always loved, during my college years I wrote a poem called ‘Ghostboy'. I always thought it could be adapted into a short film, so in 2014 I decided to make that a reality! I had also been introduced to a local stop-motion animator, Trevor Hardy, of Foolhardy Films whom had years of experience. Along with Neil James the third writer in our little trio, we began working on Ghostboy!
How would you describe the story and characters of Ghostboy, and what sort of audience you want to reach?
Even though Ghostboy is a stand alone short film, it is in fact a TV pilot. We are hoping to develop Ghostboy into a running series for kids aged 5-11.
We would love to see that! The use of stop motion is amazing. Can you tell us about your experience with that kind of filmmaking? And how you feel it enhances storytelling?
Our animator Trevor Hardy is incredibly experienced when it comes to stop motion, the process was smooth and enjoyable. The pre-production stage is probably more extensive as the storyboards and design has to be fixed before production can begin. However, I decided to animate the mouths of each character digitally so that animation could begin and allow the cast to add-lib lines.
The result is really great. As an indie filmmaker, what do you feel is the hardest part of filmmaking in 2016?
The most challenging part of filmmaking in my view is getting it seen, even with online platforms such as Youtube and Vimeo it is still very difficult to reach a large audience. I have however been using Filmfreeway to enter festivals and competitions which is by far the simplest and useful method to get your film seen across the world.
Do you have any influences that you regularly look to? Filmmakers or films or other?
I’m heavily influenced by Pixar, not just their films but their mantra and way of thinking during the production process. This is what has lead me towards making animated films.
What's next for you?
I am in the process of developing short Ghostboy episodes to explore the characters more. At the same time I am in pre-production for a new short film mixing live action and animation!
What would say if you were a dolphin?
“Don’t visit Japan…"
Or visit the Ghostboy official website - http://www.ghostboy.tv/