Q: What is Love on the Airwaves about?
A: I wanted to explore man’s growing relationship with machinery; how we are increasingly interacting with gadgets that talk to us. Is it possible for that line, of machines being man’s slaves, to be crossed? Does the increasing dependence on machines lead people into being deluded into thinking they have a deep and meaningful relationship with their mechanical devices? Also it looks at how easily we discard once beloved gadgets for the brand new ones. If you go back only a few years BlackBerries were all the rage. Then it was iPhones. Now the iPhone is being challenged by a whole new generation of android devices. Yet if you happen to come across that old BlackBerry languishing in the back of your drawer, you would never regard it with the reverence you gave it years ago when it was your constant companion. Instead you would look upon it incredulously, as if “How could I have ever used such a clunky device?”
Q: How did you get the idea for the film?
A: It was on a trip to Los Angeles a few years ago that I noticed how many machines talk to you, usually in the context of your car – parking garages relentlessly repeating a message about how to validate your ticket, parking machines barking instructions on how to use them, warnings at the airport about not stopping. I recorded some of these and later incorporated them in an audio/slideshow piece called The Inner Turmoil of a GPS http://thelandingstrip.tv/portfolio/turmoil-gps/. From there I thought of other uses for the character of a GPS and developed Love on the Airwaves.
Q: How did you get Max Cullen to be in your film?
A: I had known Max for about 10 years and had worked with him on a play that he had written called looking up lower. I sent him the script and he immediately agreed to become involved.
Q: Is there a mechanical object that you have a special relationship with?
A: Probably my iPhone.
Q: What is your own personal background in the film industry?
A: I actually started in the music industry in the 80s as a musician and songwriter. I then set up a radio syndication company. More recently I started writing screenplays and thought that making a short film would help my writing.
Q: What sort of day job do you have and how has it influenced your work?
A: I work as an in-house lawyer for a financial services company and I find that I quite often come across characters and situations that are larger than life. Quite often you see people’s character flaws and need to peel away the layers that mask their inner motivations.
Q: What is your strangest works story?
A: I managed the liquidation of industrial block, which was dotted with disused portable buildings and shipping containers. The owner was a strange and somewhat paranoid individual, who lived nearby in some interconnecting containers on a property that he called Dog Shit Palace. Needless to say he vehemently disagreed with forced sale of the block and each day I would be copied in on 50 page faxes that were handwritten in caps from him addressed to everybody from the Queen to the global head of the real estate agency that we had engaged to sell the block complaining about the punishment that was meted out to him.
Q: What was the riskiest investment anyone has ever presented to your company?
A: As we just work in the mortgage space the deals presented to us are fairly straightforward.
Q: Would you say independent film is an overall good or bad investment?
A: They are a different type of investment and it is difficult to generalize. You can do everything right in a project: the right stars, the right director, the right story, the right promotion and yet the film could bomb. Alternatively you can do everything in what seems the wrong way: no name actors and director, clichéd story and no promotion and come out with a hit. Which one is the better investment and how could you have predicted this from the outset? From a strictly financial perspective investing in films and for that matter all creative endeavours is more like gambling – and we have all gambled from time to time.
Q: What is The Landing Strip?
A: It’s my website that ties all of my creative endeavors – film, videos, music & photography together under one roof.
Please note; Eliza’s interviews are done by email. All answers are unedited and come right from the lovely fingertips of her subjects:)