The Inheritors have become the curators of the Obsessives; a civilization that left behind very few coherent fragments. The meaning of their stories are mostly a mystery now and may always remain a mystery.
Produced by Bill McKenna
I heard of the festival from a friend and quickly turned around the film over the course of two or three days to meet the submission deadline. I had the shape of the story in my head, wrote the script, created original music, shot the footage, recorded the voice-over (in English) and then re-recorded the voice-over in a made up language.
The language has roots in my experience as a video editor going back almost 30 years. Before non-linear, everything was, of course, on tape and the forwarding, rewinding, cueing mostly took place in real time. I can imitate pretty accurately the sound of the English language going backwards. It's sort of a party trick in some ways. I eventually altered it to a point where people can actually be convinced that I am speaking an odd, sort of Eastern European language.
The voice-over of the alien - "The Inheritor" - is basically a slight alteration of that original "party trick."
The footage itself has an interesting background. Initially, I wanted to go around Washington DC or to Baltimore Maryland to shoot abandoned buildings but I was concerned that I wouldn't have enough time to meet the deadline. I had heard about Hashima Island from a story by the Japanese broadcaster NHK. Then about two months ago, I discovered that Google was documenting historic locations for their street view maps including the abandoned island called Hashima which is also known as Battleship Island or Ghost Island.
So, over a day or two, I recorded my "web journey" around the island by sticking a video camera in front of my computer screen. I probably recorded a total of about 2 or 3 hours of footage which I then strung out on a timeline, reduced it to something a bit more manageable and, eventually, I was left with about 10 minutes of footage that was used in the finished film.
Here's some interesting background on Hashima Island:
This film was produced for the "Alien's Guide Short Film Festival" at the Corcoran Gallery of Art.
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