Making a film is hard. Even to make an average, low-budget one, you need actors, a competent crew, locations (and permission to film on them), loads of technical equipment, and at least a five figure budget. British film is booming, but it’s only a certain type of film that seems to get made. If you want to do a period drama with Eddie Redmayne and Benedict Cumberbatch, it’s no probs. But if you’re a working class kid, not in the industry, if your dad doesn’t have connections, if you can’t afford to intern for a year with no pay, good luck getting very far in the film world.
You’ll probably recognise Femi Oyeniran best as Mooney in Kidulthood and Adulthood. The Nigerian born, London raised actor got his break aged 17 when he when attended open auditions for the first movie. In the ten years since he’s managed to get two films written and directed by him made, completely independently — the 2013 comedy It’s A Lot, and the upcoming crime thriller The Intent. Just getting these films made is a real achievement — here is an immigrant fighting and hustling to get things done himself, and portraying a black London life that’s rarely seen on-screen. With The Intent set to drop at the end of this month, we caught up with Femi and his co-producer Nicky ‘Slimting' Walker (who made his name as a DJ in the early days of grime), and asked them how what advice they’d give to aspiring filmmakers, and how hard it is to get their films made, and just as importantly, actually in front of audiences.