Brit directors with stellar debuts coming our way…
NAME J BLAKESON
DIRECTED THE DISAPPEARANCE OF ALICE CREED (MARCH 2010)
COULD BE THE NEW DANNY BOYLE
Before his cracking feature debut The Disappearance Of Alice Creed, Blakeson was a jobbing screenwriter, churning out scripts that mostly sat on shelves (though he did pen a draft of sequel The Descent: Part 2). Eyeing his shot at directing, Blakeson put pen to paper for Creed only after setting himself spartan limitations – three characters, predominantly one location, windows taped up so he could shoot night or day. “I’ve always loved films like Panic Room, which do a ‘situation to the limit’,” he tells Buzz. “You take one situation and beat the shit out of it.”
Creed’s ‘situation’ involves one abducted rich girl (Gemma Arterton) and her two captors – one meticulous (Eddie Marsan), the other mercurial (Martin Compston) – holding her for ransom. But by magnifying shifting power dynamics and ramping up some pressure-cooker tension while avoiding kidnap-flick clichés (tearful parents, ransom notes, drop-offs) and lobbing in some ferocious twists, Blakeson has concocted a thriller pumped with anxiety and ambiguity.
“I wanted to show that kidnapping is a humiliating, terrifying thing,” says the director, who subverts audience expectations after a shocking opening that sees a writhing, weeping Arterton bundled into a room, stripped naked and handcuffed to a bed. “Kidnappers become like parents,” Blakeson explains. “They have to do everything for their victim – feed them, dress them, wash them, help them go to the toilet…”
After Creed’s world premiere at the Toronto Film Festival, Danny Boyle’s agent strolled up to Blakeson to tell him he thought the film was the best debut since Shallow Grave. High praise indeed, which marks Blakeson as one to watch in the next decade…
And three more…
NAME JORDAN SCOTT
DIRECTED CRACKS (OUT NOW)
COULD BE THE NEW SOFIA COPPOLA
With a cast lead by Eva Green, Ridley’s talented daughter has crafted a Lord Of The Flies-style psycho-drama set in a ’30s boarding school. “It’s my family’s line of work, so the idea to become a filmmaker came pretty early on,” says Scott.
NAME TOM HARPER
DIRECTED THE SCOUTING BOOK FOR BOYS (5 MARCH 2010)
COULD BE THE NEW SHANE MEADOWS
After two acclaimed shorts (Cherries, Cubs), Harper graduates to features with his bold, tragic debut. Thomas Turgoose is the Norfolk teen who helps his bosom buddy (Holliday Grainger) run away from their caravan park.
NAME LINDY HEYMANN
DIRECTED KICKS (SPRING 2010)
COULD BE THE NEW TODD SOLONDZ
Heymann’s debut follows two football-mad Liverpudlian lasses who take drastic action when they learn their Anfield idol is going to Real Madrid. Shifts into psycho-sexual thriller territory, but Heymann proves adept at handling the girls’ weird friendship.