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Meet the 2014 Tribeca Filmmakers #50: Nick Fenton and Peter Strickland Capture ‘Björk: Biophilia Live’

Meet the 2014 Tribeca Filmmakers #50: Nick Fenton and Peter Strickland Capture 'Björk: Biophilia Live'

Icelandic and visually striking Björk performs with innovative visuals by designers from around the world, and Nick Fenton and Peter Strickland have captured her presence on-screen. While this is an early work for Fenton, Strickland has been working on screenplays and shorts since 1996.

Tell us about yourselves: 

Fenton: I normally sit in the editor’s chair and so switching to the director’s with Peter, and on a film for Bjork was an enormous pleasure. 
Making something from disparate elements into a unique whole. I love that.

Strickland: I’m half British, half Greek and forty years old. I co-directed this concert film with Nick Fenton.

Biggest challenge in completing this project?

Fenton: Getting the editor to show up for work was a constant worry.

Strickland: Probably planning where to put 16 cameras. The concert was in the round, which made it especially difficult to hide cameras. Brett Turnbull was the head cinematographer and it was a big job for him to make sure we wouldn’t disturb the performers or the audience with our presence. There were many emails from Brett discussing stage and seating elevation.

Did you crowdfund? No. Jacqui Edenbrow , the producer, managed to gather all the finance.

What camera did you shoot on? 16 of them. A mixture of Alexa and Red Epics. Brett Turnbull, the DOP, and his flawless preparation involved gathering together a collection of brilliantly talented operators.

Did you go to film school?

Fenton: Yes. I went to The National Film and Television school just outside London and studied editing.

Strickland: No. I tried to get into Reading University’s Film & Drama department in 1992. I wrote an essay on Jack Smith and Stan Brakhage as part of my application, but I was rejected. That’s probably the only rejection that I never got over.

What films have inspired you?

Fenton: Without meaning to sound smug, but Biophilia Live was inspiring . I love “Gimme Shelter” and the Maysles. There is a film called “Come and See” by Elem Klimov that is gut wrenchingly powerful every time. Juris Podniek’s films are incredible.

Strickland: It changes each day. As it’s Saturday night, I’m in a Bruce LaBruce mood.

What do you have in the works?

Fenton: I am currently editing “Life” directed by Anton Corbijn.

Strickland: A feature film called The Duke of Burgundy. I’m also releasing a 45 single by a band called Cavern of Anti-Matter.

Indiewire invited Tribeca Film Festival 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 2014 festival. Go HERE to read all the entries.

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