Wednesday, February 09, 2011

Take 5 with "Worst in Show"

As we gear up for the Oxford Film Festival 2011 to be held at the Malco Studio Theater on Feb. 10-13, 2011, we thought we might introduce you to some of the people behind the movies we can't wait to show you.

Meet Take 5 filmmakers, Don Lewis and John Beck, co-directors of the documentary "Worst in Show."
For the full schedule and description of the films, visit

Q. 1: In 140 characters or less, describe your movie and why someone should see it.

A: Our films about the ugliest dogs in the world! Need I say more??

Q. 2: Biggest lesson learned in getting the film made? Best part in getting the film made?

A: I think the biggest lesson learned was giving yourself enough time for editing. We haven't shot anything for the film in about 6 months and we're still tinkering with the editing. While our timing was pretty good in terms of finishing the film in time for the film festival season, a little more diligence in editing would have been better. We were also a tad lazy on logging footage which made things a little more difficult as well.

The best part of getting the film made was the surprises we encountered. We didn't really realize just HOW competitive the ugly dog circuit is and some of the tension and arguments we discovered were really crazy and obviously were documentary gold. There was also an incredibly touching story that came out of our film that neither John nor I saw coming. Every doc we've made has surprised us in some way we never saw coming and I think that's the coolest thing about making a doc. We try our best not to influence the people or scenes and let things be what they are. That has never failed to turn into something cool and hopefully for viewers, interesting.

Q. 3: Tell us about you. What is your movie making background?

A: This is John Beck and my first doc feature, we made 2 doc shorts that toured the fest circuit and even won a few awards. John has an extensive journalism background and has recently transitioned into "new" media by doing news stories that are video based. He's a great editor.

Don Lewis' background is more film related. Lewis has written for Film Threat for about 8 years and has a bachelors degree in screenwriting as well as a masters degree in cinema studies.

Q. 4: What's your dream distribution plan for the film?

A: I honestly believe that if someone were to put our film into theaters, it would be a huge hit. People LOVE animals and I think our film has a really nice backstory in regards to animal rescue and how important that is. But aiming a little lower, we plan to do as many film festivals as we can and then try to sell the film to an on-demand type service and/or an animal related TV network. We also have some options for DVD distribution.

Q. 5: What does the future hold in store for your film and for you?

John and I decided we want this film to be as talked about and buzzed about as possible so we're going to play as many film festivals as we can and try all sorts of way to get people interested in our film. Honestly, "Worst in Show" isn't a "festival" type doc per se. That's not a bad thing though as I think it might engage people who don't go to alot of film fests. As I alluded to earlier, we both want this doc to get us into the next level of filmmaking; doc features. We want to sell it. Our other short docs were used to get us in the door at fests and now we want to step it up a notch.

We do have some ideas for our next project and they're pretty cool. We like off-centered stories and we also like to stay close to home as we have regular jobs and kids. But we have some stuff cooking. The priority right now is "Worst in Show."

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