The Two Gay Geeks are proud to publish tis press release about our very own Hamish Downie’s short film “Silence”. Gagaoolala has picked it up to stream for Halloween. This is an incredible opportunity for Hamish to show off his filmmaking skills and present a message about domestic violence.
Have a look below.
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TAIPEI (October 2020), Gagaoolala announced today that it acquired the global rights to Hamish Downie’s SILENCE. Written and Directed by Downie (upcoming feature film “Matcha & Vanilla”), inspired by the Director’s real life, the short film has screened around the world at festivals such as Filmfest homochrom (Germany) and the Queersicht Film Festival (Switzerland), and received honorable mentions at Just Before Midnight Film Festival, and Let’s All Be Free Film Festival. It received encore screenings at Lake Champlain International Film Festival, and is set to be re-screened this year as part of online events put on by Tag! Queer Shorts Film Festival (formally Corvallis Queer Film Festival).
Hamish Downie’s Lynchesque/Homage to Film Noir and Atmospheric Horror short film follows the story of a woman (Tomoko Hayakawa) who must survive the night with her abusive girlfriend (Qyoko Kudo), after being discovered trying to escape.
The short was produced by Hamish Downie with Paul Leeming of Visceral Psyche Films (who also acts as Director of Photography), who are working together, along with stars Tomoko Hayakawa (Gagaoolala’s Keepsake) and Qyoko Kudo (The Wolverine, BABEL) on the upcoming feature film “Matcha & Vanilla” for Gagaoolala. The short film also features music composed by trans artist Thea Jane Riley, who since the film was produced, has gone on to huge success as a Trance feature artist working with such acts as Solarstone and Giuseppe Ottaviani.
“I’m absolutely thrilled that Gagaoolala has picked up Silence for their platform. It is the perfect home for the film. We are honored to be part of such a great catalogue of work. I really hope to introduce ourselves to their audience in anticipation for the release of Matcha & Vanilla, which was inspired in part by wanting to re-team with this incredible group of artists,” said Hamish Downie.
The short film started life as a music video for Robyn Loau’s song about domestic violence, ‘The Last Time”. However, when the Winter Gardens Film Festival approached Hamish Downie about screening the film, trouble came when they could not get the song cleared (it was written by Nikki Costa), Thea Jane Riley was asked to provide a new soundtrack for the film, now a black-and-white silent film.
The short film was shot deep in the mountains of Saitama, Japan in a former mining town, now left abandoned. The School Hall, where the dance sequence was shot, has since collapsed and returned to nature.
“It was a race against time to shoot the film, as once 4pm hits, the place loses all sunlight. The town is off the map, so there are no street lights. We actually went overtime, and ended up driving down the winding mountain road in complete darkness. It was just like a real horror movie. There was even another lost soul whom we guided back to his car. It sounds like a cliché, but it was terrifying,” said Hamish Downie.
“The film is based on a toxic relationship I had with an abusive man, who I loved dearly. I didn’t want to demonise him, so I needed an Actress like Qyoko Kudo who can really give empathy to a character that in anyone else’s hands would just be a monster. It was a very triggering and emotionally taxing film to make. I’m glad that I had such wonderful people around me to help me tell this story,” said Hamish Downie.
“It has been a controversial decision, but I chose to tell the story through a Lesbian couple because I wanted to show how family violence affects all members of the LGBTQ community. I hope through this film, we are able to help someone out there. Whether it be the victim escaping, or the perpetrator going to counselling to get help. We need to End the Violence” said Hamish Downie
“Silence” comes to Gagaoolala from Oct 26.
Mattolli Productions has picked up the worldwide distribution rights, and will be releasing the short film to other platforms soon.
For more information please check out these Episode 83 of the TGGeeks podcast:
And this review: