Writing Magazine

In the frame

There are very few novelists who are also film writer-directors. Perhaps the most famous example is Michael Crichton, who wrote the original novel Jurassic Park, and wrote and directed films such as Westworld and Coma. Once, like publishing, filmmaking existed in a walled garden. But now, just as ebooks and print on demand have enabled anyone to publish a book, so new technology has liberated filmmaking. So when I spoke to writer/director Andrew David Barker I was keen to find out how a novelist can become a filmmaker.

In the beginning, Andrew says, ‘I had no connection to the film industry whatsoever. I grew up in Derby to a working-class family and the options I had when I left school, after getting a very poor education, where either to go and work in a factory or on a building site.’ He did both.

With no money, but an ambition burning inside him to make a film, his feature came about because ‘I discovered an old abandoned RAF base just outside Nottingham. It was an entire village just left to the elements and it did look like the end of the world. So I decided to write to order –

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