THE SPIDER WEB, 14min., South Africa
Directed by Timothy Donovan Hay
Short documentary about a well known shaper called Spider Murphy, Spider pioneered surfing through the ages and was some of the top surfers board shaper like Shaun Thompson that won the world title in 1977 on a custom shaped Spider Murphy. This documentary is a tribute to a man that still shapes, Surfs, and skates every day at the age of 76 years of age.
Get to know the filmmaker:
1. What motivated you to make this film?
I was motivated on spiders story by my good friend Mike Frew, he came to me with the idea and so I said yes because I know spider and I don't know anyone that doesn't know him. He has been in the industry for years and has never got the recognition he deserves. We did this documentary with no funds at all other than spider offering me a custom surfboard which I jumped at as my first board was indeed a spider Murphy and it's the board I learnt to surf on and fall in love with surfing. So I feel like I owed him a huge favour and this film can only pay a small portion of the joy he gave me from my first board.
2. From the idea to the finished product, how long did it take for you to make this film?
From the idea we jumped into it with no plan straight away. Spiders interview was first and from this we realised the story was much bigger and decided to get more interviews with key surfers in his life. Since this was self funded we filmed the interviews on our free days so the process took a lot longer than planned, there is so much more to his story though and feel like we could have included a few more important people but time and money was not on our side and what we created was more to commemorate a legend in the surfing world. So it took maybe half a year considering filming was intermittent.
3. How would you describe your film in two words!?
4. What was the biggest obstacle you faced in completing this film?
The biggest obstacles filming this was probably trying to figure out where we were going with the story. There was so much history that was wanted to include but couldn't due to time and money. We were also keen to get an interview with Shaun Thompson but he was so far from us that we kept it small and maybe in the future we could touch on some stories as we still have loads of stories from the interviews.
5. What were your initial reactions when watching the audience talking about your film in the feedback video?
I was blown away! It's awesome to get feedback from someone other than a friend because your friends would never say anything horrible about your film haha.
6. When did you realize that you wanted to make films?
I am always on the look out for great stories! And when Mike came to me with the idea of doing a film on spider I was excited.
7. What film have you seen the most in your life?
I have watched a few feature films on repeat like "fight club", "matrix", "Apocalypse" And studied them to figure out how they shoot it. Lighting, camera movement, Colour pallet. I also love films with a great story that keeps you engaged so much so that you are left with wanting more from the story!
8. What other elements of the festival experience can we and other festivals implement to satisfy you and help you further your filmmaking career?
I think what you guys at the Toronto Documentary festival is amazing! Always on point with your mails, offer so much to the Film maker that benefits us hugely! I can't think of anything else to add to the experience.
9. You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway. How has your experiences been working on the festival platform site?
Film freeway is a great way to find the right festival for your film. I don't know any other platform that pin points festivals other than google but this user friendly and updates you on festivals worth entering.
10. What is your favorite meal?
Favourite meal is pizza. But I have a gluten issue so I only have it like once a month.
11. What is next for you? A new film?
I am working on getting funding for a feature film idea. I also am open to doing some new passion projects but after this film and the amount of work I created for myself I have decided that the next project better be about someone that died and came back as a dragon otherwise I'm not keen haha.