NYFA Australia Graduate to Screen 3 Films at Sydney Indie Film Festival

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It’s with great enthusiasm that we discover New York Film Academy Sydney graduate Ren Thackham has not one, not two, but three films screening in this year’s Sydney Indie Film Festival!

Coming from a background in production design and having produced corporate videos for several years, Thackham returned to her hometown of Sydney to attend NYFA’s One Year Diploma of Screen and Media, in order to take her filmmaking skills to the next level.

ren thackham

“No matter how much experience you have flying solo, you’re miles behind anyone with a year of NYFA under their belt,” said Thackham. “The teachers are all industry, they’re speaking from experience not textbooks and they give real answers to real world questions. It provides the confidence to take on more ambitious projects. The training was definitely valuable and I miss it, but the post graduate support and the pride NYFA has in their graduates is worth the course fee alone.”

The three films that Thackham will be screening at the Sydney Indie Film Festival, which runs from October 17-25, are:

Lady Luck
A film that follows one man through a game of poker where Lady Luck herself materializes and takes him to a fantasy world where he meets the characters at the table as they really are. This was Thackham’s NYFA graduation film.

Glow
This short film throws a twist on the smartphone addiction debate by referring to it as an actual drug called Glow. Glow has been her most successful film thus far, as its been selected for nearly every online festival she has entered.
brainless killers
Brainless Killers
This is by far her most ambitious project. It’s set in a world where zombies and humans coexist. Zombridge is the town where all the zombies reside and survive off donations of cerebral fluid. The story follows a couple of journalists into Zombridge where they uncover an illegal hunting and farming operation and have to blow the lid off the story before they become victims themselves. It’s a twist on the animal rights issue, but instead of showing how animals are treated, Thackham gives a new perspective of how humans would like it if they were treated similarly by someone else further up the food chain. “Starring Australian Comedian ‘Steve Hughes’ with ‘Odd Studio’ doing the make up (The artists behind Mad Max Fury Road), and the best production design I could muster, it’s going to be my best film yet.”
on set ren

Like most filmmakers, Thackham has a couple of feature scripts she’s currently writing. Her hopes are that her shorts will bring help her the attention and contacts needed to make her features a reality.

“When you have a project, even at script stage, your perspective of the world becomes richer,” says Thackham. “Every place you visit is a potential location, every item a prop, every stranger you meet could inspire a character, every situation you’re in could be a scene. That’s what makes you want to do it forever; it’s way more fun than living in the real world!”

If you’re in the Sydney area and would like to see Ren Thackham’s films, visit sydneyindiefilmfestival.com for more information.

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Published on: October 7, 2015

Filled Under: Entertainment Australia, Filmmaking, Student & Alumni Spotlights

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