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6th September 2012
Undressing desire
Title of film: Ninetwofive
Director: Deb Garcia
Production Company: Nicole Crespo
American-based Cuban Deb Garcia's film interpretation of an unusual relationship

You précis the story as “Ryan and Spade are a married couple that live a “nine-to-five” lifestyle. However, their relationship is used only as a mask to cover up their identities.” How did the narrative evolve?

The narrative was born out of a poetry reading back in my hometown, Miami. I was invited by my friend and author of the NINETWOFIVE poem Naty Kos to see her perform the poem live. The words left me in awe and all kinds of visuals flooded my brain that night. I rushed home and began illustrating the storyboards (see Related Content). I knew for a while I wanted to collaborate with her as an artist, so we began to pull together a small crew of amazing individuals and brainstormed ideas, characters and location.

What inspirations were you drawing on to shoot the film in the style you used?

My interest lies in manipulating physical areas of deep depression to create an atmosphere – areas that can summarise the history of a theme, cause, character or subject. I also have a run-on love for low-budget German cinema and sets/props from the silent era. I wanted to really push that in this film by expressing the density of its theme through high contrast imaging and stylized visuals.

Also, grain…lots and lots of film grain.

What lessons had you learnt from your previous work that your brought to this production?

Collaboration is key to the success of any moving picture. As a director, I’ve always been a sort-of-one-girl-band in charge of everything from pre to post production. But with this film, I really learned to flow with my resources to make a great picture. I used Nicole Mijares which is one of the most amazing photographers I know to guide the visuals, found musicians who sound like a choir of celestial angels, and finally paired it with words to create a full synesthetic experience.

What camera did you use and what were the main challenges of the production?

We used two Canons (7D + T2i) with 35 + 50mm lenses. Sound was definitely the biggest challenge. The project was delayed over three months in post because I could not find chemistry between sound/visual. It gets really difficult to try and explain how a moving picture sounds in your head. I went through three sound engineers before hitting the nail with Lizzy.

Any interesting pieces of trivia on the music?

We came across the band on a night of brainstorming. I had juxtaposed the storyboards with the poem, and my friend Jor-EL played me God of Love by Stereo Alchemy with the storyboards played on a computer screen. I emailed Stereo Alchemy’s Chris [Tin] and Kametron the next day explaining how I felt when I juxtaposed the sound/visuals:

“All of my surroundings suddenly drowned in deep hues of red wine. Complimentary colours have ceased to exist. I can’t see this project working without its one true love.”

I mean, who would say no to that!?

Credits

Director + Editor  Deb Garcia
Producer  Nicole Crespo
Director of Photography  Nicole Mijares
Art Director  Natasha Mijares
Script + Narration  Naty Koss
Assistant Director  Jor-El Garcia
Production Coordinator  Virginia Aguilar
Production Assistant  Melissa Martinez
Camera Assistant  Alexander Diaz
Make Up Artist  Vanessa Delgado
Original Soundtrack  Stereo Alchemy
Sound Mixing  Elizabeth Gallardo
Press + Legal  Patricia Del Pino
Financing + Accounting  Erica Bovea— CAST–Ryan Daye  Santiago Borges
Supporting Male  Jor-El Garcia
Supporting Female  Veronika Mejia
Voice + Narration  Naty Koss