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Victoria Film Festival 2014 Interview – SPECIAL ED director John Paskievich

Special Ed - At Victoria Film Festival
by Jason Whyte

“An often hilarious, sometimes poignant, story of the trials, joys, and dreams of Winnipeg film animator Ed Ackerman, a modern day composite of Don Quixote, Peter Pan, Chaplin's Tramp, the biblical Job and Sisyphus of Greek mythology, as Ackerman, among many other labours, tries to resurrect a twenty five year old film animation project designed to help children spell, attempts with llttle money to renovate three inner city houses which he hopes will become his film production studio and will also serve as an inheritance for his three children, and runs for Parliament and then for Mayor in an effort to stop the threatened demolition of his dilapidated properties by the City of Winnipeg. "Life is short but it's wide" says Ed.” Director John Paskievich on his film SPECIAL ED which screens tonight at the Victoria Film Festival.

Is this your first movie in the Victoria Film Festival, and are you coming to Victoria for the screening.

Yes, this is my first film at the Victoria Film Festival. Alas, I am unable to attend.

Tell me a bit about your background and what led you into the motion picture business.

I began as a still photographer and then moved into motion picture.

How did this whole movie come together from your perspective?

The move came together as Ed’s dreams and illusions fell apart.

What was the biggest challenge in making the film?

The biggest challenge was how to edit all the film I shot over three years.

What was your single favourite moment or rewarding experience out of the entire production?

Finishing the film was both a joy and a relief.

What keeps you going while making a movie? How much coffee?

I have no special ingredient that keeps me going. I only have one or two coffees a day.

I would love to know about the technical side of the film, your relationship to the director of photography, what the movie was shot on and why it was decided to be filmed this way.

I shot the film and recorded the sound myself. I used Mini DV tapes. I shot it this way because it allowed me the flexibility to shoot whenever I so desired.

After the film screens in Victoria, what is the future release plan for the movie? Anywhere you WANT the movie to be shown but haven't done so yet?

I am looking for US distribution.

What would you say or do to someone who is talking or texting during a screening of your film in a cinema?
I can’t imagine anyone being that rude.

There are a lot filmmakers, especially up-and-comers, reading our site. I was curious if you had any advice to aspiring filmmakers?

Everything is designed for you to go away. Don’t.

And finally, what is the single, greatest movie that you have seen at a film festival?

To choose one film as being the greatest would serve no purpose and would be wrong.

This is one of the many films playing at this year’s Victoria Film Festival. For showtimes and further information visit www.victoriafilmfestival.com.

Be sure to follow instant happenings of the festival and updates on my Twitter @jasonwhyte!

Jason Whyte, efilmcritic.com



link directly to this feature at http://www.efilmcritic.com/feature.php?feature=3629
originally posted: 02/15/14 05:28:50
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