Co-Leader Manhattan

NINA GIELEN

Director / Producer / Writer

Nina is a writer, director, and producer whose short films have been shown at festivals in the USA and abroad. Her first feature project is currently in the very early stages of development.

WEBSITE: NINAGIELEN.COM
SOCIAL MEDIA: TWITTER / VIMEO

A Q&A WITH FILMSHOP BREAKTHROUGH SERIES 2017 FEATURED ARTIST nina gielen...

"MAGIC WINDOW" (NARRATIVE FEATURE) In this true-crime drama, when a twelve-year-old boy from a troubled home falls in love with his father’s friend, an adult man, he is determined to do whatever it takes for the two of them to be together—setting him on the path to tragedy.

"MAGIC WINDOW" (NARRATIVE FEATURE)

In this true-crime drama, when a twelve-year-old boy from a troubled home falls in love with his father’s friend, an adult man, he is determined to do whatever it takes for the two of them to be together—setting him on the path to tragedy.

What was the inspiration for your project?

My script was inspired by a true crime from the early 2000s, a murder case in which these two young kids, two brothers, ended up murdering their father so that the younger one could pursue the man he thought he was in love with. It was sordid but also compelling, because the way these events played out, the story felt almost a bit like a Greek tragedy. The case was in the news around the time of their trial, I think in 2001 or 2002—that’s how far back this project dates for me. I wrote the first draft of the screenplay in 2010 and have been chipping away at it ever since.

How did the Filmshop community contribute to its development?

I’ve workshopped the script twice in Filmshop over the past four years; last season, I also presented a pitch deck for the project and got some feedback on that. Plus, I feel like I’ve gotten additional help and support from members outside of our regular meetings, including feedback that came out of a “feature salon” we held over the summer, one-to-one conversations about development, and general sharing of experiences with feature-making. Filmshop has been great.

What would the New York Times say about your project?

I suspect A. O. Scott would not give it a great review, but Manohla Dargis might like it. Ironically, I find myself agreeing with Scott more often than Dargis when I read their respective reviews.

What's next?

Well, my project is at the development stage, and I hope to move it into production and actually shoot it in the foreseeable future. I’m also working on a horror anthology film called The BLDG: Five Stories of Horror with a bunch of other Filmshoppers. We’re launching a crowdfunding campaign this Halloween to raise enough money to shoot the first of five segments making up the anthology, all set in the same creepy building. After that we will use this short as a proof of concept with which to approach investors. There’s a team of very diverse, cool, and talented people involved and I’m super stoked to be working with them.

Tell us something about yourself that most people don’t know.

When I was a toddler, I was convinced that the older you get, the more fingers you grow.