the new filmmaker: What's the story of your film?
Laura Holmes: A collaborative project between Cary Fukunaga and luxury fashion brand Maiyet improvised and shot in Kenya in 2012. The story’s protagonist (Haley Bennet) is a young woman on her first trip to Kenya to meet the grandparents she never knew. Through her grandfather’s Ranger (Fares Fares) she discovers the untamed beauty of Africa as well as her own visceral emotional limitations. In the lead roles are actress Haley Bennett (known from the romantic comedy Music and Lyrics) and Swedish actor of Lebanese origin Fares Fares, who appeared in the film Jalla! Jalla! (screened at the Karlovy Vary IFF in 2001) and Kathryn Bigelow’s successful drama Zero Dark Thirty, among others.
the new filmmaker: What inspired you?
Laura Holmes: In shooting the rhapsodic Sleepwalking in the Rift in Africa the director gave a great deal of leeway to the mood of the present tense experiences of the leading actors, bleeding between the past and the future. The strong emotions that accompany the story were the goals of the improvisational production, always meant to feel as authentic moments rather than a chronological narrative. This lead to the mini-episodic presentation of the pieces.
the new filmmaker: What equipment do you shoot with?
Laura Holmes: 2 Canon 5D Mark IIIs
the new filmmaker: Film school or learning by doing?
Laura Holmes: Film school and learning by doing!