Talking Stone Film

Film Reviews & Headlines

I see. I want to talk about this
film because is a very good example of a good story. And I want to mention a few things I learnt for,
specially for making this film. When I got permission from this guy to film this,
I knew a good story. It developed the best possible way because he won. And everybody I told this idea or this story, they understood the block in the story. You didn’t need be a horseman or practice
a horsemanship to understand it. So, it was indeed easy to fund too. So, number one is a good story to tell. The second thing I kept in mind was to work, to
hire the best, best camera men and the best… Let’s say good camera men
and the good editors. I didn’t try to do it myself I just hired the
best people I knew to do it. And the outcome was fine.
Icelandic film center reported on the film. And what is most important a lot of
festivals wanted to show it. And that’s the key points I want to deliver to
you from my experience. It is to concentrate on the investments and pick out festivals which choose yours style or your goals in your filming. Because, actually… I got the
film funded from Iceland film center. I sold I think 5 thousand DVD’s. And now I want tell about festival in Lubeck. Last year I was screening another film there but I of course took a part in the parties at nights. But I always woke up early to meet
the guys from TV stations at the breakfast. That is very, very important thing is
if you want to have contacts. which is very good to use at the perfect time. Because everybody is with a little hangover but OK in the head and good atmosphere to do business. So I gave them my DVD’s and in the end North German TV, they have bought it. And now they are going to show a part of it or the whole film. So, when you want to deliver things and make possibilities, and you probably already know the film festivals are key things To get contacts, is that what you mean? Like, you know. – Pardon me?
– You said that film festivals key to get contacts. Yeah. To get contacts. It’s also to very important for the film center that your film is traveling a little bit around the world. I think after we went to nine festivals, it’s very important for you, when you apply for somebody to finance your next project exporter to have this track of festivals and it’s also very important to… If there is a possibility to send it to TV abroad. – Can I ask you?
– Yes. I’ve heard that, I don’t know if I’m right,
but I’ve heard that here in Iceland you can basically, almost do like, bachelor on a topic of
training to raise horses. Is it truth? Like it’s actually, I think you can
study and even get a degree in it. Pardon me? I’ve heard that here in Iceland you can do
like an actual bachelor example on a topic of training raise horses. Like you can study it. – Yes, yes it’s true.
– And here in the movie, as I understood, it’s like a little bit the conflict between those
who have just studied it and between those who, you know, have been doing it since childhood, right? Or no? Yes and no. It’s indeed… The university for Icelandic horse studies is located here, in Saudarkrokur. But those are two different worlds, actually. The raising and jogging horse. And they don’t actually
have very much to do with each other. But this film wasn’t about raising actually. It was about
how to enjoy the horse and, of course, the raising people they know how to enjoy
nature and enjoy horseback riding. This was more to show that you have
to sacrifice the beauty for money, actually. So, yeah, in way it’s right. I want just to clarify. I am sorry but I didn’t catch in the beginning. The sacrifice was that once you participate in a race outside of Iceland, you can never bring this horse back to Iceland. – Yeah.
– Yes? It’s because Iceland has been isolated
for eleven hundred years. So, everyone who goes out, everyone goes to competition, the horses can never came back – They never come back.
– And what happened with the horse? It was sold. Actually, I just ended the film there.
And I left this question open, was it all worth it? But the truth is, he sold it to two
young persons from Sweden. Usually they sell these famous
horses for a lot of money. He decided to sell them the horse on condition, that he was allowed to come over, had right to ride the horse. And keep the contact. Like it was the same. But it wasn’t. It has never been the same. Another question. How much money have
you got from the TV stations? Oh, I got … Somebody can convert.. Around one and
half million from Iceland kronas. – It is like eight thousand Euros.
– Yeah. Actually it’s 10 thousand Euros. But I got eight millions from the Icelandic film center. And… I suppose I got 5 or 6 millions
from DVD’s. – And German TV? I don’t know. I still negotiating with them. But it’s not a lot of money, maybe 5
thousand Euros, one million kronas. like that. So finally you got 8 million from film center and 1,8 million from … From Roof. From Roof, yeah. Where do you sell these DVD’s? I sell 95% of them on the internet. And also in local retail shop chains. So, what’s the percentage from national retail shops? No, I haven’t … I haven’t got any yet. So, you sold it on internet, you said. Yea, yea I sold it’s on … it’s sold on… on internet book shops, and so on. And it’s still selling. And it has a Facebook page. It has five thousands followers on Facebook. Did you advertise somehow? – Pardon?
– Did you advertise? No, actually not. It just… It advertises itself. I’m not very good at advertising and doing that stuff. But five thousand and more people thought they should know from somewhere about these films. Yeah. It is… You can say generally it is this horsemanship work you have 20% people connected with racing. In a some way, they are doing it as a sport.
But the 80% are doing it for fun and pleasure. And it’s actually proved that a sport groups are popular is on Facebook. 70% mom. And you can say it’s more than approved. So. Yes. When was it shot? – Sorry?
– When was the movie shot? It was in 2007. And then it took 2 years to edit the movie. And it was… We were three together. And we had one adviser from the film center
and we disagreed very much. In the end I understood I have to do it the way
I am going to do it. So, I’m just not paired with them. Can you tell us how you did the marketing for this film? – Marketing?
– Yeah. Did you do? – I didn’t do any marketing.
– Oh, OK. Actually it happens. When I sold it to TV, they said “We need some trailers
for advertising in our TV channel.” So I gave them the trailers and I put it on YouTube. And I think the trailer has now
46 thousand views something. So, it’s just the internet. Where was it premiered ? Where was it premiered?
Was it premiered on TV or in the cinema? – Both.
– Both. Yes. I sold it to them. – You mean Icelandic cinemas?
– Yes. It was shot on very good cameras. So it was… We were able to screen it in big cinemas. I think I got 3000 people or
something like it in screenings. So, it was very nice. Nice thing. But… Remember one, if you have a good story – go for it. That’s number one and for number two… Work with professional people And three, use these film festivals.
Use it for bigger audience and send it to them. Yeah. Also how many people actually worked during the shooting? It was you, one camera man and?.. Two camera men and me, actually.
We were three. And the sound? It was an expensive lesson. You mentioned yesterday that you
didn’t afford to have bad megaphones. And, yes I remember my lesson, because it was too much, much more expensive to have sound afterwards. I spent two million kronas on it. – So I should have hired someone for the shooting.
– Yeah, two millions spent on sound. So, like the most you shooting two cameras
mostly at the same time? Or on the race you also had just two? Out of the nature we were shooting one camera, but on in Holland we were shooting with two cameras. And of course we had problems with world championship people. Because there were TV stations and
all TV stations had a man to film there. It is just like… always when you are doing documentary.
You do, do push to get there. Where did you have international premiere
and what personally do you remember? – Personal premiere?
– International. It was in Thessaloniki. – In Thessaloniki?
– In Greece? – In Greece. – In Thessaloniki?
-Mhm. It was almost at the same time in Canada too,
in a small festival there. And usually people… It is usual that people, in the end, they cry a little bit, because it’s a sad story, But in Canada there was an old lady, nineteen years old. Ninety years old. She started to cry when the sun went down and show this landscape. And I asked her why. Why are you crying at this point?
This wasn’t the right point to cry. She said, my parents, they came
from Iceland. And they were… I’ve never been there myself, but they explained for me how beautiful it
was. That’s why she started to cry. What cameras you used? It was this big Sony HD, with the tape, big tapes. 6 or 7 mm. The thing is… I’ve been working on feature films. We were working a lot on “Of Horses and Men”. And I should… I played very little role in the film. It was a low budget thing,
but they needed to pick up actor from street. Now I’d just like to… I mean, if you are doing a documentary, you
can’t decide the whole thing yourself. And I like that. And it’s just, just the answer. Just because I like it. Maybe you like true stories? Yes, it’s all about storytelling. I mean, film making is just storytelling. And maybe you know what was the budget of “Of the Horses and Men”? It was… They didn’t managed to finance it before. And I think they had 80 millions Iceland kronas or something. – Eighteen?
– Eighty. From seventy five to 80-90 millions. Five hundred thousand Euros. So, it’s quite OK. That is 533 Euros, thousands Euros. Thousands of Euros. – 500 Euros.
– Really low budget. It was a very, very low budget. We were sleeping all together in,
on the floor. And it was hard work. It was a lot of fun. And usual film, because we were
filming outside most of the time. Out in nature, so… In Lithuania everybody liked this film very much. – Yeah?
– Yeah. It was screened, we had festival and was
crowded and every screening. You couldn’t get any ticket. Sad horses and men. In what festival was it screening? In Scanorama. This one. This one we are at now. One of the camera man in this film was …. Yes, Sigma, one of directors in our team,
he was in “Of Horses and Men”. So, I need to go now. So I would say goodbye to you. Here. Hopefully I will join you tomorrow. Because I need to be in Reykjavik tomorrow,
where I’ll have spare time. Hopefully I will meet you to say goodbye. But if you have any questions I can answer it. – If not…
– On phone. If not, I just would like to thank you very much for coming. It was very nice to meet you.

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