For The Love of Film: The Minds Behind Adam's Crossing
Ash Walker | On 17, Jun 2017
In lieu of their upcoming short film Adamâ€™s Crossing, we sat down with co-writers Chris Timms and Michael Telford to have a chat about their movie, having a perfect script and the struggles of filmmaking in Brisbane.The Creative Issue: Firstly, can you tell us a little about the film?
Chris: The film is about an IT worker, Adam Roberts, who is a great guy but a little bit of a doormat, people kind of dump on him. He finally befriends somebody at his workplace, and they strike up a really cool connection. Then something terrible happens and he is faced with a difficult decision about what to do next. We canâ€™t really reveal too much!
TCI: What was the inspiration behind this film?
Chris: I came up with the idea because I really wanted to do a story about friendship. We get a lot of films with romantic plots and that has been explored a lot. So, I really wanted to explore friendship and I came to Michael with the idea back in 2015 and we just sort of ran with it! We started thinking about Adam and creating his character, where he works, what his personal life is like, and it just branched out from there.
Michael: We spent a while on it, not because we were struggling to write it, but because weâ€™ve been pretty harsh on ourselves. We like to write it and then go over it and redo stuff. Chris is a perfectionist and we really just took our time to get it right. Weâ€™re still nitpicking it a bit, the script is never completely done.
Chris: We had a final draft, and then a final final draft and then a finalÂ final final draft (laughs). So weâ€™re getting there!
TCI: You co-wrote the script, how did you find that?
Michael: We saw eye-to-eye on pretty much everything, so that really helped. This is Chrisâ€™s first script, and my first script writing with someone else. It was a big learning curve for the both of us, but we were always on the same page which made it a lot easier. It never really felt like work.
Chris: All up, weâ€™ve spent about sixteen months working on the script. Michael says Iâ€™m a perfectionist, but heâ€™s just as much of a perfectionist as me. Once we had the script, we had other challenges, but weâ€™ve been moving forward which is great.
TCI: What was your process of writing the script?
Michael: I think we came up with the ending first from memory. Our structure was all over the place but once we got the script finished, thatâ€™s when we went back through and just made sure the structure was good and the character development wasnâ€™t messy. After that, it was really just fine tweaking. It was a bit bizarre.
Chris: Somehow it makes sense. People have read it and said itâ€™s great so we must have done something right! But it was a lot of fun, we bounced ideas off each other really well.
TCI: Do you find living in Brisbane hinders or facilitates filmmaking?
Michael: Itâ€™s definitely a struggle. Finding work is extremely difficult sometimes. Even finding volunteer work is hard sometimes, let alone paid work. You have to consistently think outside the box to get work and just put yourself out there. Itâ€™s not a very nice industry to work in sometimes, you definitely have to have thick skin and be able to roll with the punches. This year has been okay for me, Iâ€™ve found paid work, so you have to be patient as well. Before people get into this industry they have to know that.
TCI: What work have you been doing?
Michael: So lately some work for QAFL, filming a lot of NAB games. A lot of freelance work as well, corporate videos, music videos and Iâ€™ve definitely done my fair share of weddings in the past.
TCI: What advice would you give to someone starting out in the film industry?
Michael: If you want to write your own stuff, just write! Even if you have no confidence in yourself, just get everything on paper. Beginners most likely arenâ€™t going to be very good. I think itâ€™s best to get that out of the way, start failing in the beginning.
Chris: The most important thing is just to do it. Get started and start building confidence. Going back to 2015, I never thought I could write a script, but I had this idea and had to start writing and getting stuff down. Then running it past someone in the industry who I know really well (Michael) and here we are!
Michael: Youâ€™ve got to be okay with criticism as well, good and bad. Just get out there, no matter how bad you think it is. Just keep doing the best you can do. You canâ€™t really go down, itâ€™s always going up and just keeps getting better.
Chris: I think the love of the art itself, of film, will always keep you moving forward. Always keep that in the back of your mind. I know that as a musician, I come up against the same struggles as Michael in the film industry, but the love of music keeps me going and moving forward.
Michael: If youâ€™re passionate, youâ€™ve got nothing to worry about.
Find out more about the film and donate at www.adamscrossingmovie.com.