Mohawk’s second-year TV class is showcasing student talent and creativity through their “Capstone” final projects. Students have been producing short films that will highlight their skills and creative vision for their future careers. The films will be premiered Wednesday, Jan. 10 at the McIntyre Theatre on the Fennell Campus.
TV students Greg Brent and Kurt Hall have been hard at work on their film Black Mask. The pair were eager to share details on their project with Ignite News.
IN – Greg describes the story of Black Mask as your “baby”. How did the idea for the film come about?
KH – Initially, I had an idea of a scene I wanted to do years ago. I think a lot of people may relate to this, but you know how you just think of stuff while you’re walking and listening to music? I was walking and listening to The Rolling Stones, and I thought of a scene where a guy tries to rescue a girl and after he dispatches her captor, he realizes he’s got everything wrong. I had a really loose idea that I took and tried to flesh out for an 11-minute long script.
IN – So the film has a moral twist to the plot?
KH – Without spoiling anything, there is a turning point. Most films are in a three-act structure and at this point, we’ve just had the come up and the come down for Black Mask. There’s this one part in the middle where we’re very excited and very with the “hero”, and then at this specific point, we begin to question his methods and motivation.
IN – What kind of background does the main character have that gave him this skewed moral perspective?
GB – Our main character, Ted, was raised on the Internet and entertainment media. He doesn’t get along with people in general, he’s super socially awkward, and he doesn’t try to get out of his apartment. He imagines himself as a different person, being more forward and falling in love with the girl across the hall, all of that stuff. Our inciting incident is that he has a conversation with the girl, and to her it is rather meaningless but to him it means the world. She gets kidnapped and he spies it through the peephole in his door. He grew up watching revenge flicks, reading the Punisher comics and in the world of our story, there is a fictional action movie character from the 80s called The Black Mask. So, when she gets kidnapped he sees it as his opportunity to live out a personal fantasy.
IN – What is the message you want to convey with the film?
GB – Our whole goal is to call into question some of the stuff that we just accept. You watch something like 24, It’s really easy to be like, “Well, he’s stopping terrorism so it must be the right thing to do,” but he’s also pulling somebody’s fingernails out in the bottom of a subway! That’s not cool. Drawing that connection and trying to get people to ask those questions is the larger, heavy goal for the piece.
IN – Has the production of Black Mask inspired your crew to produce future projects?
KH – Black Mask is made in association with Mohawk College, but it is by Apolleon Media Group, which is my and Greg’s company. We’re on to the next project now that we have this one done, and looking for work. That’s about it. If I can get anything nine-to-five that can fund future projects like this? Yeah, that’s where I want to be.