EIFF 2009 - Wide Open Spaces
Clare Kerr producer of comedy Wide Open Spaces relays her thoughts from the producer’s chair
Wide Open Spaces was a co-production between the UK and Ireland. I raised the money from the UK end. Co-productions are becoming much more important for any producer, really just in order to raise enough money to make films. Normally it’s difficult to raise money for films in general but we were consistently surprised with how quick the process was. We met in February 2008 and by February 2009 we were finishing the film.
We had most of the cast onboard while we were getting the funding, but then an opportunity came up to cast a British actor. My co-producer Paul Donovan and I thought, why don’t we look at good Scottish actors and actually independently both of us thought of Ewen Bremner. He was the first choice for everyone. It was quite remarkable; everything was falling into place when usually there are many hiccups.
Being producer you get sent stuff the day after it was filmed. In a way it was quite good to have a member of production not there, especially with comedy. There can be quite a lot of camaraderie on set. They’ll be having a great laugh and a good time, but sometimes this doesn’t transfer on screen. But I really enjoyed it and thought it was hilarious, and that was an objective view – although you really don’t know anything about comedy until seeing the audience’s reaction.
As far as how it compared with other films I’ve worked on, it felt like it was charmed. It’s normally such a slow process and I was amazed how fast it went. As a producer it was brilliant to have a co-producer, it was like having another piece of your brain. Being a producer can also be quite a solitary and lonely job and gave it a very human approach to filmmaking.
Wide Open Spaces, Cameo, sat 20 Jun, 7pm, Sun 21 Jun, 2.15pm, £8.50 (£7.50).