Working with Director Anssi Korhonen
During our first project block at Prague Film School we were assigned as actors to 10 different directors and their scenes. They were given 5 scenes to choose from and were also assigned crew members. This was a way to randomly put people into the various crew positions so as to all get a chance to try things out and get to know each other in the beginning of the semester.
One of the directors I was assigned to work with was a finish music video and commercial director with tattoos and the vision to take his 10+ years of experience and transfer them on to the big screen. Anssi [Korhonen] got his start shooting skateboard videos as a teenager and then transitioned into music videos and other projects. He had never dared to put his own ideas into film however and wanted to use film school as a safe space to test the waters and apply his skills.
He chose a scene from the film “Blood Simple” and we sat in the school cafeteria and discussed ideas. He wanted to make something dark and mysterious. I later found that dark and mysterious is the signature Anssi Korhonen style, and he does it oh so well.
Working on that scene with Anssi and watching how he communicated his vision and worked with his team I knew there and then that I wanted to keep working with him.
When it came time for our next project period Anssi contacted me with a script to read, it turned out he felt the same way about working with me.
He had an idea for a character that he wanted to develop for a series of film ideas in the vein of David Finchers Se7en.
My character, Job, was a psycho murderer with a dark and traumatic past. It was a fascinating character to dissect and work on together with Anssi. We really fleshed out the back story for Job and I believe that it allowed me the freedom to really play around with the short screen time we had in this 3 minute project.
The set for 13:28 was amazing. Anssi designed it himself with help from his crew. He used old spaghetti thrown on the walls and a lot of fake blood. We used all practical effects and the result was incredible for a school project.
Our last project together was during the final semester at PFS. Anssi asked me to read his script and give him feedback. I did and I felt a connection with the character named peter straight away. He was a rockstar based on Petri Walli from Finnish rockband Kingston Wall. I gave Anssi my feedback and told him that I would love to be a part of the project and that I felt I could give the performance needed. Anssi agreed and said he actually already had me in mind for the part.
For the role of Peter in The Question I needed to have long hair, so of course we went wig shopping.
It was a great experience and the story was dedicated to anyone with suicidal thoughts and depression which was a great honour to be a part of for me as I have several friends who have taken their lives and of course all of the musicians and artists around that time who were surrounded by people, yet always alone.
Since graduating from PFS, Anssi and I have stayed in touch and we have plans to work together on a feature film in the not so distant future.