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Meet the 2013 SXSW FIlmmakers #34: British Duo Jones' Comedy 'Everyone's Going to Die'

By Indiewire | Indiewire March 6, 2013 at 9:16AM

The debut film from British collective Jones, "Everyone's Going to Die" is a lo-fi comedy with a darkly misleading title.What it's about: Two lonely people who find and help each other in unexpected ways. Those times in life when it seems suddenly short.About the filmmakers: We’re from London, England. This is our first feature. We wrote, co-produced, directed and edited it, so if you don’t like it, there’s nobody else we can blame.What else do you want audiences to know about your film? In the bigger picture it’s about mortality and loneliness. We wanted to have a look at those things without the film itself becoming depressing, which is how you come back around to someone who thinks their dead husband has been reincarnated as a cat, for example. The title applies on a broad level. Nobody actually dies in the film (although that depends how you define ‘nobody’). So if you like action films with a high body count, this may not be for you. If you like films with a sense of humour and moments of unexpected tenderness, come on in. On the shoot we were always being asked what the film was called by groups of builders or something and we’d say ‘Everyone’s Going To Die’ and they’d say ‘brilliant’ and we’d say, ‘it’s an indie comedy’ and they’d say ‘oh’, and their faces would drop. If anyone wants to remake it as a martial arts revenge epic featuring Van Damme on the rampage, we know for a fact there’s an audience. What was your biggest challenge in developing this project?
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Jones
Jones
The debut film from British collective Jones, "Everyone's Going to Die" is a lo-fi comedy with a darkly misleading title.

What it's about:

Two lonely people who find and help each other in unexpected ways. Those times in life when it seems suddenly short.

About the filmmakers: We’re from London, England. This is our first feature. We wrote, co-produced, directed and edited it, so if you don’t like it, there’s nobody else we can blame.

What else do you want audiences to know about your film? In the bigger picture it’s about mortality and loneliness. We wanted to have a look at those things without the film itself becoming depressing, which is how you come back around to someone who thinks their dead husband has been reincarnated as a cat, for example.

The title applies on a broad level. Nobody actually dies in the film (although that depends how you define ‘nobody’). So if you like action films with a high body count, this may not be for you. If you like films with a sense of humour and moments of unexpected tenderness, come on in.

On the shoot we were always being asked what the film was called by groups of builders or something and we’d say ‘Everyone’s Going To Die’ and they’d say ‘brilliant’ and we’d say, ‘it’s an indie comedy’ and they’d say ‘oh’, and their faces would drop.

If anyone wants to remake it as a martial arts revenge epic featuring Van Damme on the rampage, we know for a fact there’s an audience.

What was your biggest challenge in developing this project?

On a film like this it’s all a challenge. You think you’ve written a low budget story and then you realise you need to shoot someone jumping off a bridge into a harbour. At night. Predictably, everything comes down to money. How to get it, and how (not) to spend it. The film was funded entirely privately by individuals giving very small amounts in film terms. We wrote the finance plan ourselves, went out and pitched it face to face and were very lucky to find people whose generosity we’ll never forget. Although we’d never done a feature, this wasn’t our first time behind a camera, so we knew we could be very cost effective on the shoot and still make something that wasn’t let down by its budget.

What would you like SXSW audiences to come away with after seeing your film? A smile on their faces, some things to think about and the feeling of time well spent.

"Everyone's Going to Die"
SXSW "Everyone's Going to Die"

Did any specific films inspire you? It started when we went to see "In Search Of A Midnight Kiss" in a small cinema called the Prince Charles, off Leicester Square. We’d always wanted to make movies eventually, and that made us realise that a very low budget film could be just as entertaining as any other. That film feels lo-fi but the quality of the writing and acting is so high you just don’t care. That’s a different thing to aiming at an audience who already watch a lot of lo-fi movies.  It seems obvious now that it’s possible to cross that line, given what’s happened since in terms of movies and also the technology moving on, but this was 2008 and it was a revelation (to us at least). Beyond that we just thought a lot about what films we liked tonally, and how that affected what kind of film we wanted to make.

What do you have in the works? Our next project is called Firebird. There are some tonal similarities with this film. It’s a story about a circus performer who loses an eye and then finds out nobody likes him.

Indiewire invited SXSW directors to tell us about their films, including what inspired them, the challenges they faced and what they're doing next. We'll be publishing their responses leading up to the 2013 festival.

Keep checking HERE every day up to the launch of the festival on March 8 for the latest profiles.



This article is related to: Meet the 2013 SXSW Filmmakers, SXSW





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