MEET THE FILMMAKER: Eileen Agosta.
Local filmmaker Eileen Agosta is one of our favorite people. And she’s a helluva filmmaker to boot. It’s why we recruited her to be the Program Director for the Colorado Independent Women of Film Festival and why we added her to the “EFP Screening Board.” These two things, frankly, made Eileen wonder if she was still “eligible” to screen at the EFP. Our response: “Um, yeah… d’uh.”
Eileen is working on her first feature film project Trauma. Although not technically her first feature, she’s asked us to pretend that her first one doesn’t actually exist. She’s got incriminating pictures of EFP host Patrick Sheridan so we’re happy to play along. Patrick had a chance to catch up with Eileen, who is screening the first trailer for Trauma at October 18th’s The Emerging Filmmakers Project at The Bug Theatre.
PS: Tell us about yourself and why you’ve become a filmmaker.
EA: Would it be terrible if I told you I don’t know why I became a filmmaker? Because I don’t. It happened so gradually it’s like it was organic – almost like I became one because I was supposed to become one. When I was younger my friends and I would play around with my dad’s old Magnavox camcorder, a huge beast of a machine that recorded right onto VHS, and shoot lots of goofy videos, scripted and improv. And I shot a Star Wars parody called CAR WARS when I was a senior in high school. But I didn’t really consider doing anything more with it, not at first. I started out as a writer… I used to write short stories and (attempts at) novels, and then when I was in high school I wrote a feature length film. I went off to college – CSU in Fort Collins (I started out as a biological sciences major, of all things) – and at some point during my second year it occurred to me that perhaps I should try and make that film. I don’t remember how or why, it was just a thought I had that never went away. So I did. I charged the entire thing on credit cards (I do not recommend this), and it turned out as well as you’d expect a first time film that was written/directed/shot/edited by a first time filmmaker would. And I just never stopped. (The making films part. I don’t charge them on credit cards anymore. Seriously, that was a really bad idea. Don’t do it.)
PS: What are we going to see at the EFP? Has it screened elsewhere and what are your plans for it?
EA: It’s the teaser trailer for Trauma, a feature I wrote and am getting ready to direct. It’s going to be a local film and I’m fortunate enough to have a really great team coming together. I’m co-Producing with Jackie Billotte, an incredibly talented woman who will also be acting in the film, and Bradley Haag, who’s also going to be the Director of Photography and is also crazy talented (if you were at the September EFP you already know that.) I’m also very excited to have cast Laura Mayo and Gina Di Tullio, two of the most amazing actresses I’ve had the honor of working with.
The teaser screened at the September Open Screen Night, and it’s on our website and Facebook page. We recently wrapped an Indiegogo campaign, through which we raised part of our film’s budget (a big THANK YOU to everyone who donated!) We’re getting ready to cast the rest of the film (auditions are October 21st) and we have some more fundraising plans up our sleeve to raise the rest. We’re hoping to shoot later this year and early next.
PS: What else are you working on?
EA: Trauma is taking up a lot of my time these days, but I’m always writing. I have a stack of unproduced short film scripts that I’m hoping to get to someday. And Brad and I have been tossing around the idea of shooting a holiday film (with a twist).
PS: Tell us one weird thing about you or your movies.
EA: My cat appears in them – a lot. And all of my shorts have an easter egg from a previous film in them.
PS: Where can people go to find out more about you?
EA: My website – www.tmdfilms.com – has information and links to watch all of my previous short films. I’m also on Twitter and Facebook – @eileenagosta on both. And TMDFilms has it’s own Twitter and Facebook pages too.
PS: Is there anything you’d like to say about The Emerging Filmmakers Project?
EA: Discovering The Emerging Filmmakers Project changed my life. True story. If you’re local and you like and/or make films and you haven’t been to the EFP you’re missing out. Seriously.
PS: Thanks for visiting with me, Eileen! I know Trauma and whatever else you do is going to be amazing. I’m happy to call you my colleague. Even happier to call you my friend.