An Interview With Lexus Short Films Director Jeannie Donohoe
Film festival season continues to march across the continent with this week’s Napa Valley Film Festival (NVFF) in California. While the hype surrounding films like Nate Parker’s Birth of a Nation and Oliver Stone’s Snowden continue to grab headlines, a new group of bubbling independent films have begun courting the attention of film aficionados looking for something fresh.
All of which helps set the stage for The Weinstein Company and Lexus International’s third annual Lexus Short Films series. A remarkable program working to inspire a new generation of independent filmmakers. We recently had the chance to sit with Writer and Director, Jeannie Donohoe as she wrapped up her final day of directing one of this year’s Lexus Short Films, entitled “Game.” Interested in learning more? Click here to read about our recent set visit.
1. How long has the entire production for this short film taken?
“Five days. The length of the film’s script is 15 pages, so it’s actually leisurely paced page-count wise. However, there’s a ton of action. Most of the scenes have a lot of basketball in them so shooting was a bit complex, with all of the moving pieces and angels we wanted to capture.”
2. How did you get involved with this project?
“I submitted to Lexus Short Films through Withoutabox and made it to the next round. Producer, Joey Horvitz, of The Weinstein Company contacted me shortly thereafter and let me know it was time to write a script based on the treatment I had. It all went fast and furious from there.”
3. What attracted you to the script?
“Well I love basketball and I really love watching it. I love learning the stories of players, coaches, and the history of the game. Without giving too much away, I admired the theme of overcoming obstacles, to get as far as you can in pursuit of one’s dreams.”
4. How did this year’s theme of “Anticipation” play into the production of this film?
“The plot of the story originated around the anticipation of whether or not our lead would make their high school team or not, but I would say the theme quickly involves into so much more with a drop of a ball.”
5. What do you hope viewers take away after watching Game?
“It’s an inspirational story. We follow a character who really wants to achieve something and we see the struggles along the way, including some of the expectations and limitations put on the protagonist. At the end I hope our audience feels connected to the journey and hopefully feels inspired.”
6. What do you enjoy most about your job as a director?
“Well I love telling stories and I enjoy working with people who are very passionate about what they do. I’ve been incredibly lucky to have that on all fronts: from producers, to sponsors like Lexus, all of the creative collaborators on the project, and definitely the cast.”
7. How was it like working with a crew of nearly all women?
“There’s an increasing trend of women working in the industry; at all levels, including executive roles. Our short film is a great example of how well it can be done with a team of strong women.”