In this feature of Minds behind the Magic, Lynette Chong talks to filmmaker Christian D'Alessi about his new short film Return Flight as well as his experiences, challenges and inspiration that drives and fuels his passion for film.
Introducing filmmaker, Christian D'Alessi
*Lynette: Christian – you’re a busy man! We heard that you have recently written and directed a short film Return Flight that is soon to be released! Please tell us more about this recent work.
*Christian: Return Flight is one of the many passion projects I have. It's about a coming-of-age story with a fantasy adventure twist set within a small rural Australian town during the early '50s about a test pilot that mysteriously disappears. A year later, his young headstrong daughter and her little rapscallion brother find their father, but with flesh-like wings. Oh! And there's a secret military division that's after them. The trailer, which is now available online for viewing, is a proof of concept that conveys the premise of the full story and touches on several themes along with establishing the look and tone. It will make a great miniseries!
*L: You have almost a decade of experience in the film industry. It is said that there are only six stories, maybe twelve. It’s all been done before, and we’ve seen it all. What do you do to keep it fresh?
*C: Wow! 6 to 12 stories! That's more than what I was told, which was 3! (laughs) Well, I've really only just started producing and directing in the past few years. The rest of my experience has been in and out of the industry crewing for others, watching and learning. So it’s all feeling fresh to me and I'm just keen to tell great stories.
*L: Trailer Music II is an innovative collaboration between classical musicians and filmmakers which challenges boundaries of both film and music. What sparked your interest to be part of this film and music collaboration?
*C: I simply love the idea and concepts behind everything that anon. is doing with their Trailer Music series. It also seemed to really go hand-in-hand with my personal philosophy about film-making, which is to show more, tell less. Most often in film, music is the biggest compliment to the visual image. Trailer Music flips that around and says, “Here's music first!” Now compliment it with the visual image! It's great; I had such a blast doing it, I've loved working with the guys at anon., I hope it's not the last. It’s been a great experience.
*L: What is the greatest challenge you have faced or face as you pursue your career in this industry?
*C: Every project has its own challenges and I've had many. I guess the greatest challenge moving forward is similar to what many other filmmakers and creatives have - that's to be supported financially.
*L: Name one film that greatly inspired you and tell us the reason why.
*C: You want me to name just one film has inspired me!? Oh man, this is the hardest question ever! I don't think I can do it! There’re so many films that have inspired me and still do. Well, for the sake of naming one, let’s say Alfred Hitchcock's Psycho. I grew up watching it and it might just be one of my favourite films.
Catch Christian in action at Melbourne Music Week!
Trailer Music II - 12 & 13 Nov 2016, 8pm.