On The Cusp, Longlist - Short Film - Non Fiction

The Both of Me

Brandon Lavoie

"The Both of Me" is the definition of a passion project. This film is the culmination of years of work, travel, and collaboration. I've now known Chuck Nelson, the miner in the film, for almost as long as I've been calling myself a filmmaker. Through our conversations, both on and off camera, I've learned so much about life and about myself. Chuck has become family and a mentor. He has taught me about conviction and what it means to be a person who tries their best to follow their own moral compass. His willingness to allow me and my team to create an evocative story around his life's narrative was both courageous and heartbreaking. Unfortunately, Chuck passed away in June of 2021, after suffering a heart attack. I feel incredibly fortunate that he was able to see the film before he passed away, that he connected with it on a deeply personal level, and to have the opportunity to share his story. Thank you for your consideration.

My interests as a filmmaker are tied directly to my fascination with people and the power of their personal narratives. The stories I’m most interested in are intimate, character-driven portraits of people, often split between two worlds, dealing with the choices and circumstances of their lives. The work I set out to create exists at the intersection of narrative filmmaking and non-fiction storytelling. An approach exemplified in my documentary and commercial work, and most recently in “The Both of Me,” which was recently shortlisted at the 2021 Young Director Awards in Cannes and had its festival premiere at the Mountainfilm Festival in Telluride, Colorado. I am most interested in making films that will push the documentary genre forward by implementing narrative techniques more typically found in fictional filmmaking, where an audience can suspend their disbelief while still finding empathy in the underlying human story. At the end of 2020 I was selected to SHOOT Online’s 18th Annual New Directors Showcase. My films have screened at festivals and events around the world, been shortlisted for Cannes Young Director and Venice TV Awards, received Vimeo Staff Picks and have been published and shared via many online platforms, such as The Atlantic, The Guardian, SHOTS. Director's Notes, Film Shortage and many more. I currently reside in San Francisco and am available to work globally.