Corinna Faith is a British Writer and Director who recently made her feature debut with The Power. The Power tells the story of a young nurse forced to work the night shift in a crumbling hospital during a time when England was plunged into mandatory...
Corinna Faith is a British Writer and Director who recently made her feature debut with The Power. The Power tells the story of a young nurse forced to work the night shift in a crumbling hospital during a time when England was plunged into mandatory blackouts every night to conserve power. As she works her shifts by candlelight, a terrifying presence threatens to consume her and everyone around her. The Power is a very atmospheric and spooky supernatural thriller, and the concept of nightly blackouts in an asylum is very eerie. The Power is now streaming on Shudder. Corrina and I discussed the making of The Power, her supernatural and paranormal research for the movie, and big director lessons learned from her first feature.
Here are some key takeaways from this conversation with Corinna.
- Re-visit the 70s. The 70s was a very innovative time for filmmakers in the wake of the dissolving of the studio system. Here you saw the unbridled rise of auteur and renegade filmmakers, and as far as decades, none of them compare to the ’70s. Prior to making The Power, Corinna's cinema diet consisted of a number of 70's films, focusing intently on the work of Robert Altman. The edge and sophistication of the ‘70s sensibility shine through in The Power and gives it a very noticeable quality of filmmaking and interesting storytelling. It also helped that the story took place in the ‘70s. If you're a student of film, it would behoove you greatly to dive into this decade as much as possible as it was a golden age for independent film and maverick directors.
- Take care of your health. Ok, I'll admit this is a boring one, but before you wring me out on Twitter, think about it. Corrina learned that your health is one of your greatest assets as a director, which is absolutely true but often the last thing to be taken care of. We've talked about this a lot, but yes, while making your films, there will be sleepless nights, there will be uphill battles, way too much coffee, and aching bones, but it benefits you as a director to take care of your health as much as you can. Being healthier increases your physical endurance, emotional resilience, problem-solving ability, and overall cognition, which are all things you will need a high supply of when you're on set. So, as hard as it is, do what you can to get adequate sleep, exercise, and a decent diet.
- Find a mentor/cheerleader. It is a difficult long slog to get movies made, things go wrong, projects get canceled, but it’s important to keep the faith. When Corinna's first project was unexpectedly canceled, she was very dismayed, but she had a pivotal mentor who expressed confidence in her work, and that's all she needed to push through the difficult times. Sometimes all it takes is for one person to believe in you for you to believe in yourself enough to push forward during adversity. This worked very well for Corinna, who years ago was in a very difficult and frustrating place but now has an awesome first feature under her belt. Try to find those mentors out there whose feedback can help shape your ability, they can not only improve your craft, but their confidence in you can help you push through the tough times.
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