Introducing Patrick Boivin – Openfilm’s 2nd “Get It Made” Winner

Published On November 3, 2011 | By admin | film production, Independent Film, Q&A
Patrick Boivin is the winner of Openfilm.com’s second “Get It Made” competition for his entry “Le Queloune”, which is a zombie film told from the perspective of the zombies.  Chosen from over 100 online entries this is a return to Boivin’s roots in the horror genre and the $500,000 prize will help him produce a feature film showcasing his unique script idea and talents.  Filmmakers Notebook wanted to find out more about this Canadian-born filmmaker and what it’s like to be a winner in this very special competition, so we decided to interview him in the Q&A that is posted below. 

Tell us a bit about you and some of your other film projects.

I learned to create movies all by myself. I started as a comic book artist at 16 and at 20; I discovered the “video” and the pleasure of telling stories through films. Since then, I’ve been trying everything. In order to get what I wanted, I learned to take care of every step of a production, from lightning to SFX. This became a great advantage a couple of years ago when I started doing some shorts for the web. It’s also very helpful in every kind of production I direct since I can say exactly what I want to any chef of department.

For you what have been the major differences between directing a television show and making a film? 

The TV show I directed was a concept that I created with 8 friends of mine. The show already existed as an independent video tape thing when the TV station people invited us to make a “broadcast version” of it… So we had a lot of power over how to do it and I basically approached this like I would have approach the production of a movie. The show was made of hundreds of sketches from 30s to 8 minutes long that where all created like independent shorts. 

Aside from the financial concern, what do you consider the greatest challenge being a filmmaker? 

I don’t feel that being a filmmaker is a challenge. It as become a way of living, a way of thinking and the most rewarding activity in my life. Now as a filmmaker, I love to put myself in challenging situations. Of course, money is always the biggest issue because you can never get enough… One of the greatest challenges is then to make something that doesn’t look like it was made with the money you had but with way more. 

Do you have a favorite film genre that you prefer to work in?

No… And this is frustrating for me because people always want to associate you to a genre. It is actually a big problem with institutions here in Canada because since I created a lot of animations for the web, people are now expecting animation projects from me and I this is not the kind of movies I want to make theses days. 

What made you decide to enter the Openfilm competition?

Openfilm is for me the most important “window” on the web for filmmakers and so from the beginning I wanted to be a part of it. When I learned about the contest, I submitted a film just to be an active member, that’s all. I was the first to be surprised when I learned the good news. We are going to make an awesome movie together! 

Tell us about “Le Queloune”, the project you won the award for and how you got the idea for it.

Like most independent male movie makers, my first projects were about zombies and horror stuff. In a way, it’s an easy beat, and you don’t need that much of a story or good actors. Fifteen years later, I felt like revisiting that style, but with a different approach.

When you think about it, the “zombie” is an excellent movie subject, yet there’s not much you can do with. You’re bound to two or three simple rules and that’s it.  So with ”Le Queloune”, I wanted to take a look at the possible feelings of the zombie, waking up to discover that the only thing he likes to put his teeth in is human flesh. The idea wasn’t to do a horror movie.  I first wrote the script about a normal guy waking up from the dead.  The clown idea came later. In a way, I was creating a sarcastic comedy, and I thought a zombie clown to be funny.

Now that you have the financial means to make the feature, where are you in the production process.

We are still in the writing process… A good movie begins with a good script, and good scripts take time to write… 

Since submitting “Le Queloune” the short, what changes do you think you’ll make to the story as a feature film?

My wish was to keep the main idea that was to follow a Zombie who is slowly discovering what he’s become. I asked a Canadian writer (Randall Lobb) with whom I already worked on another film project if he was interested by the challenge and to my surprise, he already had the bases of a story that went exactly where I was dreaming to go. We now have a full first draft of this story untitled “Dead Max” that I find extremely funny. The character is now younger and we follow him from before he dies and so, before he becomes a Zombie. The movie will be more about dialogs and funny situations than about SFX and makeup. Dead Max will not be a horror movie…

What are your future plans as a filmmaker?

I’m actually working on a couple feature film projects. Some like “Dead Max” are comedies and I’m really excited about them, but I would say that most of my projects are more “dramatic”. I’m mostly known for my animation stuff but my real pleasure as a filmmaker is to work with actors. I recently uploaded on my YouTube Channel a 70 minutes movie called “Fall, Finally”. It’s the first feature film that a good friend of mine and filmmaker (Olivier Roberge) and I created together. The movie is a love story with no FX, no animation and almost no editing. It’s all about the work we did with the actors that are from my point of view more than awesome in the film.

For more information about Openfilm and their competitions visit www.openfilm.com

 

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