TOUCH THE SKY, 107min., Australia
Directed by Stephen Limkin
8 x 15 doco series.
Women often make better pilots, so why are only 5% of pilot’s female, and only 1.4% of captains are female?
Get to know the filmmaker:
1. What motivated you to make this film?
Apart from my work as a Documentary Director I am also a pilot and Flight Instructor. I work with a group of amazing people who teach aviation theory. In the kitchen areas are class photos from the last 10 years. As I was making coffee I noticed that there were not a lot of women in the photos. A couple of months after this realisation, a friend came to me with an idea to follow a celebrity who was wanting to learn to fly. We discussed the need to have more than one story and the series was born.
2. From the idea to the finished product, how long did it take for you to make this film?
The series took 18 months to complete from start to finish.
3. How would you describe your film in two words!? Inspirational & Empowering
4. What was the biggest obstacle you faced in completing this film?
The biggest obstacles were the time commitment and need for a seasoned producer to make the series. I had to make it work around other commitments and wasn't sure how it was going to come together once we finished principle photography and moved into the edit. Fortunately at the 12 month mark Bridget came onboard as Producer and was able to secure funding for the project which allowed us to finish the series to a very high standard.
5. What were your initial reactions when watching the audience talking about your film in the feedback video?
I was humbled to see a group of people who appreciated what we had brought to the screen and clearly understood what we were trying to do in terms of changing perspectives not only in aviation, but other STEM industries as well.
6. When did you realize that you wanted to make films?
I had life and death experience when I contracted a life threatening brain virus at 28. After a month in hospital I decided to finish my IT job and go back to the film industry (I had an acting agent when I was 18). However, this time I'd go behind the camera. I put myself through film school and have been working in the industry ever since.
7. What film have you seen the most in your life?
Top Gun and Notting Hill (nothing like breaking the algorithms)
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 always enjoy being part of the festival experience. When I was starting out I appreciated hearing from those who were a little further down the path than I was. I think it is so important to talk about the things that drive us to make films.
9. You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway. How has your experiences been working on the festival platform site?
The platform is an easy and stress free way to submit to festivals. I have used it many times and appreciate its ease of use.
10. What is your favorite meal? Beef Short Ribs cook 12 hours
11. What is next for you? A new film? At the moment, we're waiting to see if a second season is picked up. I'm beginning to formulate a plan for that and a couple of other aviation based projects.