Sunday, November 05, 2006

Very cool interview with Adrian Meade

How did you start writing?

I was 33 years old, living in New York and stressed out after 15 years working in the pressure cooker world of hairdressing and fashion shows. On the weekends I was helping out downtown in a gang's projects, persuading kids to give up their guns. I'd travelled the world, been in some VERY strange situations and people were constantly telling me that I should write about it all. A kid from Kirkby in Liverpool becoming a writer? Surely you needed a degree in English Literature to be one of these rare and exotic creatures?

Desperate for a new career I moved to Edinburgh with a plan. I would become a criminal psychologist! So I signed up for an Access course at Edinburgh University. Then that strange phenomena that I have come to love and trust kicked in. You instigate change....and totally unforeseen events begin to take over and carry you a different direction.
I was asked by some students to be a stuntman in their no-budget short film, as I had a background in Martial Arts and, more importantly, I owned a suit and tie! Once on the film set I realised that THIS was what I was meant to be doing. I'd always sketched, dabbled with music, LOVED films and was never afraid of hard graft. Making films and TV combined all those elements. I was smitten.

Now absolutely determined to to be a writer/director I planned it like a military campaign, visualising every step.
Step 1. I needed training and a calling card. I would make a short film. But first I needed a budget.
I worked 5 days a week in a Salon, 1 day a week at the Access course and 6 nights of the week as a bouncer. I snatched any time I could to write, five minutes here and there but every day I would write. On Sundays I would take out all my scraps of paper, write them up into a script and then pay a student £20 to type them into a screenplay format for me (I didn't own a computer and couldn't type.)
In nine months I'd saved £7,000 and went back to New York and made a short film on 35mm. I passed my Access course, the short won some awards and my two short scripts and feature (written mostly on the toilet in work ) secured me an agent at ICM London. I was off.

More here and a wee reminder his film Night People is on next week at the GFT and Cineworld Fountain Park

1 comment:

m said...

I saw Night People again last night with 3 friends. It held up well on a second viewing (I last saw it last year). To my relief the friends enjoyed it as well - there is always that worry when you recommend something!