Director launches first feature at Surrey Film Fest

SURREY – To make an award-winning feature film, more often than not a lot of hope and a big financial investment is involved. For award-winning filmmaker Joshua Caldwell, whose first feature film Layover will be screened during the Surrey International Film Festival, all it took was $6,000 and a lot of passion.

"We shot it on the Canon 5D," Caldwell told the Now via phone from his Los Angeles home. "It was such a bare bones production… I operated the camera for 98 per cent of the film." Caldwell, a Seattle native living in L.A., is naturally no stranger to the rain, and says he’s excited to launch his feature film at Surrey’s eighth annual international film fest.

Other films being screened at SIFF, which takes place on Nov. 1 and 14, include shorts by local and international filmmakers. Festival director Glen Chua is taking the reigns on this year’s SIFF.

"What Am I Doing Here" by director Wahid Ibn Reza from UBC, "Knocking on Death’s Door" by director Cole Jackson from Capilano University and "Solipsism" by director Jack Chen of Fleetwood Park Secondary are the featuring short films by local filmmakers. International shorts include New Zealand director Ivan Barge’s "Snooze Time," English director Edward Housden’s "The Vegan Muffin," Spanish director Aitor Gutiérrez’s "Anomalo" and Caldwell’s "Dig."

Caldwell initially wrote the screenplay for Layover in English, but the film itself is in French. Shot entirely in Caldwell’s now-hometown of L.A., the film was able to stay within its three-figure budget. Without giving too much away, the filmmaker says his film is "about how strangers can come into your life for a brief minute."

The Surrey International Film Festival takes place on Saturday, Nov. 1 at Surrey Arts Centre starting at 6:30 p.m., and on Friday, Nov. 14 at 6 p.m.

Admission to the event is free, but RSVP to secure tickets.

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