Buzz Uncut: Faintheart Q&A

With director Vito Rocco and writer David Lemon

How did you each get involved, and where did MySpace come in?
VR: I first started on the project about 18 months ago with David - it's his story, which was originally written as a TV pilot about one guy's journey to win back his family, his wife, and his self esteem as a Viking.

DL: It's an underdog story of epic proportions! I think there's something innately English about it, which is what we were both interested in. Maybe because Vito and I think of each other as
underdogs.

VR: I think of him as an underdog. I'm more of an overdog. Actually, I'm just an old dog. Anyway, I'd made a short film, Goodbye Cruel World, that helped me win this MySpace MyMovie MashUp competition, and the project that I was working on at the time was this one, Faintheart. So David and I carried on refining the screenplay, and eventually got to cast it and get it to this stage.

And MySpace also had a hand in casting, right?
VR: Casting was a fair old mixture; we did some conventionally, but it's not your archetypal romcom really - it's basically a film about losers, about everymen and women, and I really didn't want it overrun with glossy names. So we did a bit of casting through MySpace, yeah, which has turned up some really nice surprises.

Various aspects of the project have evidently been relatively open to the whims of democracy - has it drifted a long way from your original vision(s)?
DL: The project as it stands now shares a lot of its DNA with what I was originally working on alone, but it has changed immeasurably. Looking at it today, what's lovely is the scale of it now: although it has a bit of fun at the expense of people who perhaps aren't Braveheart or Aragorn, you can really tell just from the way it's looking that it's invested with a genuine appreciation of their world.

VR: That's been the biggest challenge, really - trying to throw every penny [of the £1m budget] up there on the screen. We could've done it more modestly, but the battle sequences - one of which is, like, the last fifth of the movie, it's about 20 pages - really needed the attention to detail we've luckily been able to give them. It's a pretty ambitious project, especially given the way we've continually been fighting the [five week] schedule and the weather. But, y'know, we're trying to work with whatever Thor throws at us.

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