Ivan Sen Wraps Indigenous Suicide Tale “This Winter”

“Mystery Road” filmmaker Ivan Sen has announced that he’s currently in post-production on a new film called “This Winter” which tackles indigenous youth suicide in Australia head-on.

As part of an upcoming interview on Graffiti With Punctuation, Sen revealed that he’s already completed production on this passion project despite is having a ‘sub atomic’ budget. Discussing the filming of it, he calls it the ‘ultimate DIY’ project and one about a subject close to his heart as the issue has affected his family recently:

“On location with two actors (or non-actors) and that’s it. And it’s just me through post (production) this time. So I’m actually doing all of the sound, all of the grading … on the iMac as well… the stars just aligned with this little film I think it’s gonna have a big impact. I just felt the need to do it found some amazing young kids to act very exciting little film. I’ve touched on this issue in ‘Toomelah’ and ‘Goldstone’ (and) … it was time to face it head on.”

His ambitious independent film “Toomelah” was shot on location with non-actors, leading to him being ‘surrounded by all the dysfunction that you see on screen.’ After learning those lessons the hard way, he’s now found a way to immerse himself in the chaos, without being consumed by it:

“I learned a lot of lessons from ‘Toomelah’. I got Ursula Yovich to kind of shoot through the centre of this film with this young guy we’ve got her experience to be kind of a platform. My lead actor is incredible, he’s a cousin of mine and he’s twenty years old and he’s just mesmerising, so real the difference with this film compared to Toomelah is all the performers are strong.”

Sen is also tacking an upcoming untitled sci-fi project, but found his work here had a massive influence on that film:

“Even though it’s a bigger budget with much bigger stars, that simple DIY approach can make a $5-10 million film feel like a much bigger film and compete with much bigger Hollywood films.”

“This Winter” is being submitted for the upcoming Berlin Film Festival.