Pro Tools
•Register a festival or a film
Submit film to festivals Promote for free or with Promo Packages

Filmfestivals.com + fest21.com merger

 

 

Enjoy here the best of both worlds: Portal with Film & Fest News and Social network for the festival community.  

Since 1995 we connect films to festivals and document the world of festivals worldwide.
We offer the most comprehensive festival directory of 6 000 festivals, browse festival blogs, film blogs...and promote yourself for free.

User login

Who's online

There are currently 1 user and 32 guests online.

Online users

Savannah Film Festival


Hosted by the Savannah College of Art and Design, the Savannah Film Festival features the best in independent and innovative film from around the world. From feature-length films to two-minute shorts, the annual festival presents a full range of cinematic creativity from both award-winning professionals and emerging student filmmakers.


feed

Interview with Adam Nelson for "Schoolcraft" (2015)

Writer Director Adam Nelson's short “Schoolcraft” (2015) tells the real life story of NYPD cop Adrian Schoolcraft who exposed corruption within his precinct and the punishment he received as a result. Nelson's film is a harrowing account of what goes on behind the scenes within institutions of authority which are supposed to protect and serve but which too often abuse. “Schoolcraft” won the Silver Screen Award at the Savannah Film Festival; this is an annual award presented to the best student film in competition that was produced at SCAD (Savannah College of Art and Design).

 

In an interview with Adam, here is what he had to say:

Can you tell us about Schoolcraft?

Schoolcraft is a short film based on true events surrounding Adrian Schoolcraft, a former NYPD officer who secretly recorded police conversations for over a year in effort to expose an illegal quota system that existed within his precinct. The film takes place on a single day – October 30th, 2009 – at the height of Adrian’s encounter with police corruption. After leaving work early, Adrian’s superiors ordered an Emergency Service Unit to raid his apartment, physically abduct him and forcibly admit him to a psychiatric ward.

How did you come up with this story and what inspired you most about it?

I learned of this story when it was originally covered in the media back in 2009, and I remember feeling an overwhelming sense of frustration and a great sympathy for Adrian.   Then in early 2010, when the audio recordings began to surface, I couldn’t believe what I was listening to.  The tapes sounded like something out of a cheesy cop drama, but it was real.  I think I was initally most drawn to Adrian’s bravery—his commitment to his ideals, but I was also very impacted by the tragedy of the story.  In these events, Adrian really was a small man against a giant machine.  By the inherent nature of his circumstances, he was doomed from the start.

Where did you film and was it an easy or tough shoot?

Production of the film took place in Atlanta, GA, which played in the film as locations in Bedford-Stuyvesant and Queens.

What is the main message you want to say with this film and can you speak about police violence and how you think it is affecting us in a democratic nation?

Police violence and abuse of power is undeniably an extremely prevalent issue today, which has a pulse on the national dialogue of our county—which in part, I imagine is why audiences have been so receptive to the film, but I really never set out to make a “political” film.  In many ways, it’s shocking to me that anyone can actually consider the film “controversial.”  The laws of our country and a police officer’s duty to uphold them—to treat every citizen with respect, fairness and equality—that’s about as straightforward as it gets.   The film simply points out that obligation, an obligation that we’re failing at on a national scale. 

Do you think we are in a safer place with media being able to expose such things or more dangerous with authorities able to see everything we do?

There are many pros and cons in the way that technology impacts our relationship with law enforcement. In the context of Schoolcraft, Adrian’s story – and all of the people that his actions represent – it may never have seen the light of day if not for his routine audio recordings, so in this case, I think the world is a better place for the technology. Our easy access to digital recording devices creates a culture of accountability. The thing that I’ve always loved about cameras is that they don’t lie.  They show life how it really is.

How have audiences reacted to it?

Audiences have reacted very strongly and positively to the film, which as a filmmaker is obviously very rewarding.  As we take the film across the country and share Adrian’s story at film festivals, during the Q&A sessions, we regularly hear new stories about their individual experiences with corrupt law enforcement.  Sharing the film and audiences connecting with it just further proves that Adrian’s story is a microcosm of a very tangible, national issue.

Will you turn this film into a feature?

A number of producers have already expressed interest in working with me to adapt this short into a feature film, but for now, I have no definite plans to do so. The short film only explores a small portion of Adrian’s story and there’s definitely a bigger story that hasn’t been told yet, so maybe one day, but right now, I have other stories I’d like to get out into the world. 

You recently won SAVFF Silver Screen Award. How was that experience?

I’m very much a workhorse, so awards don’t mean much to me. A person connecting with my work is what really excites me. I do see winning the Silver Screen Award at the Savannah Film Festival as an extension of audiences connecting with the film though, so in that context, I am very happy for the accolade and success of the film. I’m very pleased the film is touching people’s lives somehow. 

What are you working on next?

I am currently gearing up to direct my first feature, a coming-of-age film called Finders.  Production will take place in Georgia early this spring.  The story of Finders unravels against the backdrop of rocky, turmoil-struck eras of America’s history.  Shifting between a drug-hazed, post-Vietnam 1979 and a 1940 with the country on the brink of entering another World War, Finders is seen through the eyes of vulnerable characters that seek comfort amid dark times beset with tension and uncertainty. 

 

Interview by Vanessa McMahon

 

View trailer here: 

Deals

    

About Savannah Film Festival

Bolda Sheila Lynne
(Savannah College of Art and Design)

Hosted by the Savannah College of Art and Design, the Savannah Film Festival features the best in independent and innovative film from around the world. From feature-length films to two-minute shorts, the annual festival presents a full range of cinematic creativity from both award-winning professionals and emerging student filmmakers.

Savannah

United States



View my profile
Send me a message

User images

gersbach.net