1st November 2012
Fun and games
Title of film: Mikayla And Melissa - Charlie White - Music For Sleeping
Director: Molly Schiot
Director Molly Schiot on capturing angst-ridden teenage woes and the trials and mainly tribs of making videos with Cher Lloyd

See more of Molly Schiot’s work in Related Content

It must be like fireworks inside your mind, can you tell us please how your latest work Music For Sleeping Children came about? Did you work with the artists on your ideas or were you given total creative control?

I got asked by Charlie to listen to a few tracks from the Music For Sleeping Children album. I immediately connected to the “Mikayla and Mellissa” track because the girls are bright and cognizant of the very worrying world that teenage girls have to shake hands with day in and day out. The beautiful thing is that when Charlie said Go, I didn’t have to check in with him again until I was finished. That’s called a DCT = Dream Come True.

How does your creative process work for, say, a) Music For Sleeping Children and b) for Cher Lloyd?

For Charlie’s project I wanted to illustrate innocence. I also wanted to bring to life a variety of voices that seem to collectively sing the same song for this day in age which is: It’s ok to be you, in a society that is always trying to make you someone else.

I showed this piece to my mom today who thanked me for doing a PSA on Bullying. Bless her heart. It is interesting though because one, she is adorable and doesn’t know Charlie White from Charlie Brown, and two she is spot on. These girls tell it how it is and what better way to show these voices than through something that we all can’t get mad at. So, the long and the short of it is, I bought tons of bread packed with chemicals and literally created the most diversified bunch of faces on the planet.

For Cher I worked backwards. I edited down hours of talking head footage to create five stories about HER. Then I contextualized them into playful worlds that I knew her fans would love and want to live in. I remember when I was a teenager being OBSESSED with Guns and Roses. The little things that made me excited and happy were when I would find out that Axl loved track and field or that he loved to eat clams. I wanted to do this with Cher. I wanted to make her relateable and live inside of a trapper keeper world that kids could peek at while in class.

You’ve worked with Cher Lloyd collaboratively on several projects, and they are pitch perfect for the market and beyond. What part of creating this series do you find the most rewarding and the most challenging?

The most rewarding was the fact that her fans also known as Brats, LOVED seeing a completely different type of video. The most challenging part of the Cher project is what anyone that has ever directed a music video faces: Music Videos. You find out on a Friday evening that its due the following Friday and then Wednesday night you finally find out the location, the budget, perhaps what track it is. I am obsessively organized and take pride in preparation. When you are working with a musical artist it’s close to impossible to have things run smoothly. It’s unfortunate because often times, and all of you who make videos can relate to this, know that the project suffers when you are at odds with almost everything.

Do you storyboard your films meticulously or do they evolve as you work?

It’s completely necessary and responsible as a director to storyboard any form of moving content. With that said my most beautiful and exciting moments have never been storyboarded.

There is nearly always an animated element to your work. Where does this knowledge of different animation genres come from and do you yourself ever animate?

I animate as much in camera as I possibly can. I love love love anything that looks like it was created by someone’s hands. The knowledge comes from practice. Over and over and over and over and over again. Recently I have been bridging the world of in-camera animation and post production much more.

When did you first realise you wanted to direct? What led you to directing?

I knew I wanted to make films when I first saw Lynne Ramsay’s Ratcatcher. There was a moment when a mouse drifts off, into space, attached to a balloon that totally rooted itself onto my brain. What led me to directing was a series of awesome events, including self discovery, amazing friends, break ups, car accidents, being broke, developing a thick skin, making tons of mistakes, again, and again, and believing and relying on completely myself.

Are you developing personal projects as well as commercial projects? Can you tell us about those?

Yes!! And maybe?

What would the dream job be?

I would love to start a company that produces amazing content made by woman to even out the playing field a bit. That field is pretty damm steep right now and I have all the faith in the world that will change.

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