Fresh across the seas is our brand new Expat Filmmaker in Berlin, and he is also one of our attending filmmakers for DUB 2018: England cum NZ citizen, Adam Thorogood.
Adam was born in Essex in the UK but migrated to New Zealand a few years ago, and it's there that he found his directing chops by completing his masters in Screen Production from the University of Auckland. Now in Berlin since the beginning of June 2018, these few short months have proved an exciting time. Adam will be attending our 2018 festival and be showing his face at the screening of his own NZ made short film Mute, which was his final film of his master's degree. Mute was screened at the Auckland Film Festival and was a semifinalist at the LA Cinefest 2018.
Now he’s in Berlin, what can we expect from a filmmaker living in a city like Berlin? Let's find out.
How did the move from the UK to NZ come about?
Adam - My parents have wanted to move to NZ since I was a young child however the circumstances would not allow it despite my mother's best efforts. Once I finished school in the UK my mum tried once again, this time with more success, selling the house in 3 days! Originally I had planned on staying in the UK to study nursing at York University but at the last minute, I decided on a change and a fresh start by moving to New Zealand.
What other films have you been working on in the last few years (before Mute) and how have they been received?
Adam - Prior to Mute I had made a handful of short films. One was called The Fancy China and was a drama/comedy about two fancy china plates discussing the pending divorce of their owners, this film found a good audience in New Zealand and was also a semi-finalist in the LA Cinefest festival in 2017. My first project was a 2-minute film called The dairy which was shot entirely in a small shop in Auckland and was about a shop-owner wrongfully accusing a customer of stealing. This film helped me get work on a web-series called Brown Noize, for which I helped write, direct and edit a few episodes. As well as this I have helped crew on some films such as Todd Karehena's My Brother Mitchell which has been incredibly well-received within New Zealand and out of it. Furthermore, I helped out on the upcoming documentary Line Out (dir. Nevin Govindasamy) which deals with homophobia in New Zealand Club Rugby.
Which came first, submitting a film to Down Under Berlin, or moving to Berlin!?
Adam - They actually both came up around the same time. I was considering moving to Berlin for a while, once I decided I was moving I submitted to the festival straight away. It was definitely an incentive to move here.
Are you working on anything right now in Berlin?
Adam - I have finished the first draft of a dark comedy called "Verboten" which deals with the bureaucratic issues of being new in Berlin. This is personified by a matronly phantom chasing the protagonist with a clipboard demanding to see his proof of address and schufa. Other than that I'm trying to network as much as possible and find any work that I can. Then in September, I'm volunteering to work on the 'Human Right Fim Festival' in Berlin.
How do you find the filmmaking scene in Berlin?
Adam - I have only just moved here so my experience is extremely limited. However, it feels like there's a great creative energy, with lots of talented people wanting to make cool and interesting projects. I am extremely excited to delve deeper into the filmmaking scene and to meet some interesting people.
What are your favourite things about the city?
Adam - The architecture of the city is amazing. I've lived in Auckland for the last 6 years and I had kind of forgotten what an older city looks like. There seems to be a ton of great locations on your doorstep. I'm also a big fan of the späti's.
Thank you, Adam.
All images ©Adam Thorogood
Charmaine Gorman is an Australian actress and writer living in Berlin with her family. As a content writer and editor, she works for many clients around the world, and along with her husband, is the founder and content manager of the online travel guide My Guide Berlin