My last respects – Filmmaking gone personal
In the summmer of 2013, before I set out to move to Los Angeles and attend the American Film Institute, I wanted to say goodbye to my friends and family with shooting and screening a very special short film. Generally speaking, you go about this in many ways, but most likely, you do it in person. Unfortunately, with two friends in my closer friends circle this was not an option anymore, because they had both left us in tragic circumstances that year. They had always supported me strongly in filmmaking, so I decided to shoot a movie about their limitless love and devotion for each other to properly pay my respects before I move on with my life.
Tied to their unfortunate destiny, “My Last Respects” is a short film showing a very personal experience: a conversation on the phone that foreshadowed the tragedy and how it affected me, caused by the ever present disease cancer. Everyone will go through the experience to lose a dear one in the course of their lives, but with shooting and showing this film, I don’t only want to let their story live on, I also want to acknowledge all the families and friends that need to stay strong and keep fighting for their dear ones as well as their own life after they lose someone. I want to inspire viewers to reach out to someone who can help, just as I am reaching out to you as an audience to raise awareness for support.
My admiration goes out to the actors Katja Herbers (EVA) and Christian Heiner Wolf (BEN), who were open to this personal project and gave it a very unique touch. I also want to thank my supportive team which consisted of a close circle of filmmaking friends. Shooting with friends who you can trust makes for the best form of art!
I am pleased to announce that “My Last Respects” won Silver at the 2014 International Independent Film Awards, Los Angeles in the category “Experimental”! Its US premiere was at the Miami Short Film Festival 2015 and the German speaking premiere was in June 2016 at the Vienna Idependent Shorts Festival in the special section FEAR IS NOT AN OPTION. It also won the Jury Prize at the Indi.com Short Film Challenge in 2015.