SEPARATE, 6min., USA, Fantasy/Thriller
Directed by Kestrin Pantera
Separate is a post-apocalyptic survival story. When the Supreme Court rolls back marriage equality and orders couples’ lawful children to be taken and placed with “traditional” families, a daughter and dad flee their home, dodging citizen bounty-hunters, to find refuge in a gay-ballroom safe-house across the border.
Get to know filmmaker Cool Benson:
1. What motivated you to make this film?
CB - See attached link
2. From the idea to the finished product, how long did it take for you to make this film?
CB - we wrote the script originally just to have it written. we decided to shoot it about a year later and that part of the process took 4 months from shooting to post-editing
3. How would you describe your film in two words!?
CB - Terrifying and Alarming
4. What was the biggest obstacle you faced in completing this film?
CB - We shot the film in one day against the timeline of the sunset for our last shot of the day.
5. What were your initial reactions when watching the audience talking about your film in the feedback video?
CB - I was excited to see the audience reactions and shocked at how well people understood the urgency and importance of the message, as well as its relevance and timeliness.
6. When did you realize that you wanted to make films?
CB - I have wanted to be in front of the camera since college.
7. What film have you seen the most in your life?
CB - Dreamgirls, What's Love Got to Do With It, The Color Purple (3-way tie)
8. What other elements of the festival experience can we and other festivals implement to satisfy you and help you further your filmmaking career?
CB - My personal goal is to get the word out there about this short film and ultimately find opportunities to partner with producers and other filmmakers to tell a more complete version of this story, either as a feature-length film or as a series. Secondary goals are to showcase my daughter and myself as actors. This movie started off as a reel just for her but actually turned out to be an excellent vehicle for both of us.
9. You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway.
CB - How has your experiences been working on the festival platform site? Great. Overwhelming at first but I have learned to search out relevant festivals.
10. What is your favorite meal?
CB - Collard greens, fried chicken, and macaroni & cheese. Spaghetti with homemade sauce is a close second.
11. What is next for you? A new film?
CB - I do not want to make a new film...unless we make this movie into a full-length feature. I do want to work in film as an actor and/or makeup artist. If something comes up that I feel passionate about or moved, then things could change.