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Swansea

Award winning filmmaker from South Wales. Professional services in film and photography production for customers and clients based in Wales and the wider UK.

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Female Filmmakers Launchpad

Gabriella Lewis

24th - 28th August:

I was selected to be an 'observer' by Ffilm Cymru Wales and the BFI NET.WORK Wales for the "Female Filmmakers Launchpad", which took place last week. My role was to shadow the director and mentor in my group, take in as much as possible and learn skills for my continued practice as a female director in the industry. My group consisted of three other talented ladies, Destiny Ekaragha (Danny And The Human Zoo, Gone Too Far!), Carys Lewis (Selected Lab Director), and  Lisa Davies (Selected Lab Line Producer). Together, alongside additional crew members, we made a short pilot for a feature film, all of which was rehearsed, filmed and edited within 3 days. I enjoyed having the opportunity to observe Carys and Destiny - we nurtured a highly collaborative environment from the get go, which made us all aware of one another's strengths and capabilities. The talks were thoroughly engaging, where each of the four mentors (Destiny Ekaragha, Desiree Akhavan, Rebecca Johnson, Corinna McFarlane) shared their personal victories and conflicts as female directors within the industry. Common denominators during discussions in the week were, a) having an exuberant confidence when confronting the wider creative industry, b) not taking no for an answer, c) distinguishing your creative voice through practical application, and d) having an extensive range of film and/or television knowledge (be a film geek!).

Coming away from this experience I have realised that there is help and support out there, and I will certainly be looking to get involved with various networks, which help support the creative journeys of females in the industry. JUST MAKE FILMS - there are always going to be hundreds of reasons why I can't make my film, but focusing in on the positives and just going for it is 100% more beneficial for personal creative growth and development than admitting defeat too soon. I have also realised that no-one feels quite ready or qualified to take on the challenge of directing their first series of films as a new director, but if you've got something significant to say and share then it's worth the risk of failure! Women are so intricate and complex in all our beautful ways and we  bring so much variety to the world - I'm looking forward to seeing these aspects extended further through film and television! It's already starting to happen, but there is so much more room to expand and grow! This launchpad has scared me, encouraged me, and ignited a desire to grow my creative voice into something that matters and can be shared with others :)

http://www.ffilmcymruwales.com/index.php/en/news-and-events/418-desiree-akhavan-destiny-ekaragha-and-more-to-mentor-welsh-female-filmmakers

Acting for Film - Richard Mylan

Gabriella Lewis

A fantastic week working alongside Richard - where I had the pleasure of assisting a series of specialised film performance workshops at The Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama.  It was great to see the students progress over the week, where we transitioned from theatre stagecraft to film performance. The students became familiarised with working on camera, and learnt valuable lessons in the art of cinematic performance. I'll look forward to seeing each student progress further, throughout their creative journeys.

Antic Theatre

Gabriella Lewis

As a fan of 'Antic Theatre' - I was delighted to photograph the live performance of 'Daddy's Girl' at the Swansea Grand Theatre last week.

"Daddy’s Girl was a project funded by ACW Research and Development grant as Antic continue to identify new ways of creating theatre.  For this project the company approached Paul Clements to lead the directors through a condensed version of Mike Leigh’s improvisatory led process for creating new writing for performance and film. The company worked on location in a council house in Townhill, Swansea creating the first draft of a new play called Daddy’s Girl."


© Gabby Lewis Film & Photography


Onwards and Upwards

Gabriella Lewis

So my time at Cannes has drawn a curtain, and reflecting back on my experience it is safe to say I have been blown away in every capacity. As a film entrepreneur this experience has been captivating, eye opening, inspiring, challenging and all together surreal. Being able to showcase 2 of my most dearest films was a complete honour and receiving such positive feedback made every stress and struggle during each film's production so much more worthwhile! 

I was able to talk to fellow filmmakers and share experiences, having the luxury to rub shoulders with people of influence and creative magnitude. The filmmaker world that to many seems alien and misunderstood, was more of a reality than I have ever experienced before. It was real and it was invading my life in every which way, and I loved it.

Interning for my most favoured Hollywood company, Paramount Pictures, was full of challenges, curves and adventure; it presented the biggest growth I have attained thus far as a filmmaker. In moving forward I will continue to peruse bigger and better things to sustain and fuel my burning desire to elevate into this industry of creative madness. 

To conclude, I have attached a few images I managed to capture during my hectic 2 weeks during the festival's proceeding.


Cannes day 2!

Gabriella Lewis

So I had my first red carpet experience today when I went to see Mr Turner Directed by Mike Leigh.

Stepping inside the Grand Theatre Lumiere was was an experience I cannot explain as a filmmaker. It is definitely going to remain one of my most treasured memories for life!

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Cannes

Gabriella Lewis

So I am off to Cannes Film Festival in less than 2 weeks! This seems crazy and surreal, and I don't think the news will hit me properly until I arrive at the airport! Last minute preparations are in full swing, where I have been able to organise all I need to at this stage. Business cards and all the conventional networking gear are locked, loaded and ready to fire at will.

My time will be spent interning with a notable film company, whilst also finding time to dine with the film industry elite at networking parties and film screenings. I expect this opportunity is going to blow my mind in every capacity and I am happy for that to be the case!

To further add, 2 of my films have been selected to screen in a separate film event at Cannes festival. This is a very exciting prospect and I will look forward to getting both films some extra exposure in the world's hotbed for young filmmaker recognition.

I'm sure there will be many updates to follow, along with photos and videos of all things Cannes.

Exciting times ahead!

Filming

Gabriella Lewis

Yesterday I joined my good friend James Button on set to shoot his new comedy, 'It's A Fruit'. We had heaps of fun. Looking forward to seeing the edit!

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