Monday, October 14, 2013

How technology makes disability filmmaking possible

Director Errol Morris pioneered the use of a technology he called the "Interrotron." ( It uses mirrors to allow the interview subject to make eye contact with the director and look directly into the camera lens at the same time, thereby making direct eye contact with the audience in the finished film. The result is a much more intimate and absorbing connection.

In this photo I am using what I call a "poor man's Interrotron" to interview Dr. Nancy Klimas. It reflects whatever image is on the iPad, which sit flat in a bed, onto a angled mirror in front of the camera lens.

While I love the effect of direct eye contact, there's a much more practical reason. First, because of my tachycardia, even if we are both in the same studio, it would be impossible for me to sit on a stool or in a chair and conduct the interview at her eye level. She would be looking down at her feet the whole time, which would be less than ideal!

Second, and most exciting, is that we used Facetime to project my image onto the iPad. This means that even if I am too ill to shoot on location in Toronto or London or Tokyo or wherever this film might take us, I can still conduct interviews and direct the film--from my bed in New Jersey!

Our Kickstarter campaign launches October 22nd. Until then, we’ll be releasing one still from the movie (or behind the scenes) a day. Spread the word! 
Help us change the face of Myalgic Encephalomyelitis ("Chronic Fatigue Syndrome")

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