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Luke Creely - interview

Dear Friends,

Today's interview is with director Luke Creely, who recently presented the film with PiaGrace Moon "They Can't Hear You", winner with Juncture at MedFF. A true Star !!!

But who is Luke?

Luke is an award-winning filmmaker based in Melbourne, Australia. In 2013, he established the original Primitive Films with a vision to create experimental short films in the horror genre. In 2014, he co-founded Primitive Films Inc. with creative partner Jack Coco. Luke is inspired by Australian cinematic history and culture, European cinema, the Mumblecore film sub-genre, and the horror genre.

Luke is the Primitive Films writer and director with a strong vision to create compelling and provocative stories which are uniquely Australian. He is particularly passionate about cultivating a distinctive filmmaking style to serve as a point-of-difference in the Australian Film Industry. In 2015, he wrote and directed Playground (2015), a mid-length horror film which premiered at the Monash University and was awarded an Academy Award at the Phoenix Film Festival in Melbourne. In 2016, he wrote and directed the supernatural short horror film Juncture (2017), which won Best Horror Short at the Frostbite International Film Festival, Best Short Film at the TMBT Film Awards, was a Semi-Finalist at the Los Angeles CineFest, and was awarded several Official Selections across a variety of festivals. (

In front of a good coffee, Luke and I talked about his plans, his future and his ideas.

1) How is born the project They Can’t Hear you?

My intention for "They Can't Hear You" was to create a film in the spirit of 1970s American exploitation films such as "The Last House on the Left" and "Deliverance", and Australian horror films of the 2000s, mainly "Wolf Creek". Those films are visually characterised by their low-budget gritty aesthetics and hyper-realistic violence. They are "serious" social commentary horror films about the nature of violence and the violent acts that human beings are capable of and inflict on each other. This concept interests me as a film maker. It is at the heart of "They Can't Hear You". In "They Can't Hear You", I wanted to use tropes from exploitation films and high levels of gore and violence to explore some deeper themes and meanings. These meanings are located in the film's subtext. On one level, this film follows horror film formula. A girl is tied to a bed. She is tortured. She struggles to break free. But on another level, it breaks a lot of "rules". As a point-of-difference, the entire film is shot in one continuous take, for example, with the camera being positioned as a "character" that is constantly moving and that creates an immersive experience for the audience. Ultimately, my aim was to create a short, sharp and impactful slice of horror that appeals to horror genre fans and that feels both familiar and unique.

2) Is it possible that it will become a feature film?

No, I don't think this film can be a feature. It is what it is. It's purpose is to be short. But, the themes that the film presents can certainly be fleshed out and explored in a feature film format.

3) You and Adam La Rosa did a great job. How was the fellings after the shot? Did you imagine that your film with PiaGrace will win immediately?

The shoot was an amazing and very rewarding experience. I had a wonderful crew who worked tirelessly and were very open and excited about my film making approach. Shooting elaborate single takes is complex. There is a lot of planning involved. A whole bunch of moving parts that have to gel and come together. A lot of practice. But once everything falls into place, there is no better feeling on a film set. I had an absolute ball working on this film. We got it done in one day and everything ran relatively smoothly, which isn't always the case.

Adam has been instrumental in helping me get this film onto the screen and then marketing and promoting the product in recent weeks. He is a gem. As my EP, he pushes me hard, but I love that. It inspires me. He wants the best and strives for it. I'm lucky to have him on board.

PiaGrace was a pleasure to work with. She is such a committed and talented actor and a very sweet and friendly person. She takes direction like a champ, but also implements fantastic ideas of her own. That's the best way to work with actors on set - as a team and a partnership. Her work was astounding. I couldn't believe the level of raw intensity and realism she gave me. 

You never go into any film making process with the sole intention to win awards. You just do the best you can do. As a director, you stick to your guns, trust your gut and your vision, and then execute. Collaborate with those around you, trust them and their skills, have fun, treat everyone with respect, and lead the team into battle. The rest takes care of itself.

4) What is your favorite film gendre?

Horror. It is a genre that means so much to me. I fell in love with cinema after seeing "Wolf Creek". That is the film that made me want to be a film maker. McLean is my film making idol. But I love all cinema. Any film with a great story and great performances works well for me.

5) What's new project for you?

I have many, many ideas and have a new project that I am currently writing and already beginning to develop. It will be a feature film. My first. And it will be based around themes and a concept that is very close to my heart. But I won't say any more for now.

6) How is hard today realize a movie?

Film making is bloody tough. No matter how big or how small, $5 budget or $1million budget, it is hard. Any film maker who gets something up on the screen is a winner. Because it isn't easy. But in many ways, with shifts in equipment, technology and platforms for viewing and consumption, film making is now more accessible than ever. Anyone can make a movie. Anytime, anywhere. All you need is an iPhone. But executing it properly is another thing.

7) Will you come in Italy during MedFF events in the future?

I would love to come to Italy! I have a bit of Italian in me, and I've never been, so what a great way to experience the country for the first time. If my films get selected in your future events, then let's make it happen.

Thanks Luke Creely

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