Janey Clarke [janeyclarke]
What is your specialty? Production, direction, something else?
I direct, write, produce... almost exclusively it's raising funds for my own projects with my production company, I'm a Camera. but I work part time as PA and script editor to a film producer as well, Frank Tuscany of Imperial Film Productions.
Is there a link to a site where we can see references to your work?
this is my production company... www.imacamera.co.uk (mainly theatre)
this is me on imdb... www.imdb.com/name/nm3145021/resume (present/upcoming)
I need to update the production co site but never mind
How did you begin in this field? Who introduced you to it?
My Dad was in lots of films, so it was my Dad's influence. But when I went into a profession I chose theatre, which was great, and is where I worked for over 15 years as director/producer.
Which have been the most symbolic works of your career?
I staged Woody Allen's short film noir themed short stories for the theatre, adding bluesy jazz songs. Sounds like a musical? It was more of a blues/jazz cabaret with the fast paced stand up Woody of the 70's. It was called Woody Allen's Murder Mysteries. It ran in London's Off West End for 14 weeks, then transferred to Off Broadway in a much bigger theatre. I started from scratch again! It was a massive project.
Do you work for a client, for the audience, or for your own creative adventure?
I work for the audience, they take the risk when they see a film or piece of theatre, they're thinking, 'I hope this will be good,' so we have to deliver! I never want them to get bored sitting there! The creative adventure is part of the journey in making it for the audience.
What should a good script have in order to interest you?
For the characters to be alive, for it to be punchy and driven, and the story to be strong.
if I open the script on any random page I want to be interested in what I read, the language and how characters interact. A writer called Tracey Letts from Chicago showed me that when I was a young AD: 'go on, open it on any page. Is it good? If that page is not so good the rest won't really be,' or something like that he said!
Name three contemporary directors or producers that you admire.
Christopher Nolan, Quentin Tarantino and Martin Scorsese... however I really love some of the people who go further back... David Lynch, Tim Burton, Roman Polanski etc...
What movies or television shows inspired you to work in this field?
I loved My Fair Lady as a kid, and there was a copy of Pygmalion in the house by George Bernard Shaw, and I read it and realised, hey they put this on the screen... it opened up the world of language and film for me.
If an actor delivers the lines but is not believable, how do you direct him/her?
There is so little time and money that I only ever work with actors who I find believable. It's my job to set up believable actors in the casting process.
But if say an actor were having trouble with a scene, I'd give them time and space as much as possible and improvise. Always keeping them creative, thinking about the world of the piece... and I listen to their ideas.
What actor would you love to work with and what type of character would you propose to him/her as a challenge?
Jack Nicholson. A King Lear type character maybe.
Are you the type who instantly knows when a take is good, or one who does another three takes to be safe?
I know when it's good, the three to be safe are in case of 'who knows what?'!!
What type of direction are you used to giving the director of photography?
I'm starting out in film after a loooong theatre career. I've not directed a feature yet I'm still writing it.
I'd know what I want, I'd also be learning. But my theatre and film friends say I've got a grasp on lighting etc so perhaps I'll get away with it!
How interested are you in image technologies such as robotized cameras, special effects, etc.?
very interested however it's all about the words and the actors for me. and raising money (groan)
Which has been your experience with conflicts between direction and production?
If you mean the limitations of production vs cash, well that hits us all doesn't it? There's never the luxury of time that's why you rely on amazing actors who can come up with the goods in the time frame that you have.
Do you enjoy post-production, or do you prefer to leave that in the hands of other professionals?
Always been collaborative so enjoy having a part in this too - though as I said I'm from a theatre background. But I love the craft of editing.
Do you approach an editing session with a clear idea of what you want to do or with an attitude of experimentation?
I haven't worked with that many editors but from what I've done I'd definitely say I have a clear idea AND am always interesting in experimenting.
What magazines or websites of the sector do you follow regularly?
imdb, totalfilm.com, I like reading film reviews in the Guardian, Independent etc... I also like Shooting People...
What is the best movie than you have seen in the last year, and why did it seem especially good?
I know it's a bit of a chick flick but I liked Black Swan, because it was striking and original.
Do you eat popcorn at the movies?
What do you think of public subsidies for cinema?
cinema is valuable. it should be invested in. British film is an amazing thing.
What respect does the reality phenomenon deserve? What experiences have you had with this genre?
It's bubble gum. Bubble gum plays a minor part in art I suppose, but I'd rather focus on other things!
What works best for you when selecting an actor: an audition, seeing some of his/her previous work or having a long conversation with him/her?
audition. meeting them, seeing them with the script, that is the only way i've ever worked
Do you like to have a second unit or do you prefer to control every still of a production?
as I said I have a lot of theatre experience and am starting out in film. I would probably want to shoot all the footage myself though!
Do you change the dialogue after selecting the actors in order to adapt the characters to them?
to adapt to the way the cast has laid itself out on the table. you always tweak when u know the proper line up
Which do you like more, large budget or small independent productions?
both can be amazing. smaller independent productions are probably more my thing but it's a v general question... they can both be great
Do you like to experiment with new technology immediately or do you prefer to wait for it to develop?
Interested, learning more as I go along. my focus mainly is on script and producing.
Is the future of cinema the Internet? Mobile phones?
It will be the auditorium I don't think phones or internet can stop people wanting to go into a venue and experience it all together. I hope piracy doesn't hurt cinema but I don't think you can beat that human instinct to sit in a room as an audience. it stems from theatre, music hall etc.
Does the concept of interactive video stir up creative thoughts for you, or does it leave you cold?
I'm interested in writing, and unless I give my screenplay to someone I admire, I want to be making films. I love that, rather than video interactive stuff.
What recommendations do you have for someone who wants to break into in the industry?
work hard get all the experience you can, be useful and multi-tasking, always remember that it's a privileged position just to be in work!
Be generous. Value people like crew and actors who give their time. Be the calm and focused person in the room. keep your head. Maybe you'll get another job!