Flooding to Cannes

Fine Arts

- John Threlfall

A short story turned short film turned out to be the shortest route to the Cannes International Film Festival for Fine Arts staff member Dan Hogg. A digital media technician who specializes in film production, Hogg—also a UVic alumnus—was invited to Cannes in May when his 10-minute film, Floodplain, was included in Telefilm Canada’s annual Not Short on Talent showcase.

“The screening was great, people seemed to really respond to the film, and nobody walked out . . . which was good,” says Hogg, calling from Cannes. “The festival’s pretty incredible—it’s the largest film market in the world, with over 5,000 films represented.”

Floodplain is the latest collaboration between Hogg and Department of Writing alumnus Jeremy Lutter, who directed the film; they were also co-producers on the project. The bittersweet story of two childhood sweethearts voyaging across a Kootenay lake on a homemade raft, Hogg wrote the Floodplain screenplay from a short story by fellow Writing alum and rising literary star D.W. Wilson—and all three UVic grads travelled to Cannes for the screening.

While at Cannes, Hogg met producers, film fest programmers and attended a film-pitching workshop. “You can talk to people you wouldn’t otherwise get to meet,” he says. “A lot of countries are represented and have pavilions, and they all have networking events, happy hours, lectures, panels and workshops, press and industry events . . . there’s a lot going on.” Floodplain was promoted at the fest by the Canada Pavilion and Telefilm Canada’s own pavilion.

No stranger to either film festivals or awards, Hogg was part of the team that created UVic’s Leo Award-winning web series Freshman’s Wharf in 2010. He’s currently writing the feature film Rip My Heart Out, which he describes as “a tongue-in-cheek creature feature,” as part of the NSI/Movie Central Script to Screen initiative.

Hogg and Lutter already have a broadcast/webcast deal with Bravo television for Floodplain and are submitting the film to festivals. Is a feature-length version in the cards? “That would be one hope, especially with the world D.W. has created,” says Hogg. “These characters have a pretty solid narrative arc throughout their lives in his short-story collection Once You Break A Knuckle, from the first time they met to about 15 years after this story is set.”


In this story

Keywords: film, writing

People: Jeremy Lutter, Dan Hogg

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