When Convincing People Who Are Not Friends/Family That You Are Capable of Doing Something, The Onus Is On You by Maine Filmmaker Nathan Oliver
FILMMAKER — ‘We Are the Ones’
Film Courage: Where did you grow up?
Nathan Oliver: I grew up in Maine and stayed here until I was 18. After that I moved to North Carolina and then to Montreal, Quebec for just shy of a decade. My home life was pretty topsy-turvy but loving. I lived with my mom and brother through poverty and isolation in Northern Maine. That isn’t so pleasant but it’s part of who I am and I embrace it.
Nathan Oliver as a Teenager
Film Courage: Which one of your parents do you resemble most?
Nathan: I physically resemble my father. My stubbornness and temperament is very much from my mother’s side of the family.
Film Courage: What did the campaign for your 2011 Kickstarter “Lady Psycho Killer” teach you that you’re using toward “We are the Ones — Damnationland 2015”?
Nathan: I started that campaign with one goal in mind: Pay Albert Melamed. He needed the funds to offset the cost of printing/pizza/rent/internet and all the other things in life that I was sucking time from by asking him to walk down the “Lady Psycho Killer” path with. It taught me that there are people in my life that want to see me flourish artistically. It also taught me quickly things can move with the right steam pushing it forward.
Film Courage: What was the biggest lesson from co-writing/directing Lady Psycho Killer?
Nathan: Never go into a meeting expecting a “yes.” You will hear “no” a thousand times before hearing a “yes.” But don’t think that a “no” is permanent either. When trying to convince people that are not your friends and family that you are capable of doing something, the onus is on you to prove it. Always and every time.
Film Courage: Since you love the horror/thriller genre, any real life experience that mimic something in a movie, either yours or a favorite directors?
Nathan: I have never encountered anything remotely spiritual, supernatural or the like. But I want to SO BADLY! I don’t want to be the victim of my own horror but I would love to watch a UFO light up the sky or see a real ghost. In terms of incorporating things from my own life into my work, you bet I do. I give my characters traits of people I have encountered. Some I know very well, like Ella in “Lady Psycho Killer” who is based in part on a close friend I had in university. Then there are classic tropes I like to bend and twist and find something cool within them that I can hold up and show the world. The lead character in “We are the Ones” is a classic character set-up but the context I’ve placed him in is not. I love doing that.
Nathan Oliver: Co-Writer, Director
Nathan Oliver has been making noise in the film scene of New England since a very young age. His short films have found audiences at the Tower of Youth Film Festival (Bus Stop to Nowhere), the Uovo Horror Film Festival in Naples (Uncomfortable), and many more. His first foray into long form film making played at the Portland Maine Film Festival and took away the award for Best Made in Maine (2011).
In his debut feature film Lady Psycho Killer Nathan has taken the reigns as not only co-writer with Albert Melamed (Lady Psycho Killer; John McAfee) but as director, guiding memorable performances from a star-studded cast including Michael Madsen (Donnie Brasco,; Reservoir Dogs), Malcolm McDowell (A Clockwork Orange, Halloween), Ron Jeremy (Boondock Saints; Return to Nuke ‘Em High Vol 2) and Daniel Baldwin (Homicide: Life in the Streets; John Carpenter’s Vampires). He continues to write everyday and promises to bring more unique stories to the world.