Hi, everyone! The biggest film site in Europe, Cineuropa, published an exclusive article about We Put the World to Sleep: Adrian Ţofei in post-production with apocalyptic indie flick We Put the World to Sleep
Check it out for exclusive new info about the movie and my filmmaking method, the way we shot the film and how I plan to complete it!
And for those of you wanting to learn even more, here’s even more exclusive info that I sent to Cineuropa at their request, which they couldn’t publish due to lack of space:
The language is English because that’s the only common language of our characters Duru and Adrian, just like in real life. I met my wife in Turkey at the end of 2015 in a film festival.
The film project was put on hold for two and a half years, a period when we were scammed by a fake producer to work on various fake film projects. More details here: https://adriantofei.com/international-con-artist-andrea-corbella/
The movie’s universe intertwines at some point with the universe of my first movie “Be My Cat: A Film for Anne“. And my next movie movie “Dr. Frankenstein” will be intertwined with both “Be My Cat: A Film for Anne” and “We Put the World to Sleep”, forming what I would like to call a meta trilogy due to the meta structures of all three films. I might also re-edit all three films into a single new movie of maximum two hours.
“We Put the World to Sleep” was born out of my desire and ambition to combine the found footage realism of “The Blair Witch Project” (detailed in my 2013 Found Footage Manifesto) with the metaphysics of “2001: A Space Odyssey”, which are two of the films that impressed and influenced me the most.
My filmmaking method is working for months or even years on an alternative psychological reality for the actors (or for myself, partially living in character all that period), so that when we start shooting and actors start improvising, I only need to record the unfolding events in that alternative reality which I prepared months in advance. There is no script. Only some plot points. I shoot the film like a documentary filmmaker shooting real events. Tens of hours of footage (almost 100 in We Put the World to Sleep’s case), and then I look at all the footage like a documentary filmmaker and I start creating the story in post-production in the editing process.
This improvisational method of filmmaking combined with the found footage or mockumentary concepts can lead to incredibly creative and realistic results both in terms of acting and filmmaking, but it’s almost impossible to work in the system this way. Since there’s no script, I have no “classical” or “official” way to convince investors and production companies and other film entities to finance my film. The only proof I have is the success of my previous movie, which is my first film. Be My Cat went to a lot of festivals, won a lot of acclaim and awards, but didn’t reach the top 10 festivals, and that limited the financial success by limiting the distribution offers I got.
And by the way, I sometimes get questions about festivals – it’s not that distributors care about awards and festivals for the value of the movie, it’s all about publicity and money: big festivals and awards mean big publicity, which means lots of people will wanna watch the film, which means a good chance of money for the distributor, which means they’ll pay you some money, which means you survive to make another movie. Everything is connected. Of course there’s also star power, but I don’t have stars in my films.
I’m also passionately researching and updating on a regular basis two lists of top 100 film festivals plus submission tips – one for genre festivals and one for all international festivals – which I initially made as a submission guide for my own projects, but then I decided to make public, and such a good decision that was – now I’m happy to see that thousands of filmmakers around the world are using lists to find the best festivals to submit their films. And I’m using the lists myself as well, of course. I would love to premiere “We Put the World to Sleep” in a festival like Sundance, Toronto, SXSW, Cannes, Tribeca, Telluride, Berlin, Venice, AFI Fest, Sitges, Fantasia or Fantastic Fest – that’s where I hope to find good distribution deals so that I can later say to potential investors, supporters, producers and actors: hey, I made my first two feature films without a script and they both won international acclaim, the second one also made good money, therefore join my team in supporting my next feature, let’s try to push a found footage film to the Globes and the Oscars! Foolish dreaming, some may say, but I say it’s possible in the right circumstances. Wish me luck! 🙂