Apple Devices News Samsung Smartmoviemakers, , , , , , — January 22, 2013 20:32 — 0 Comments

Mobile filmmaker brings Belfast’s other side into focus


Filmmaker, Peter Ferris, samsung, mobile, belfast

Filmmaker Peter Ferris

The premiere of filmmaker Peter Ferris’s latest film was held in the troubled Northern Irish city where it was shot using only a Samsung Galaxy Note smartphone with actors from across the community

A 20-minute film, shot exclusively on a Samsung Galaxy Note, received its premiere in Belfast at the weekend to show a different side to the city which has been in the news again lately for all the wrong reasons.

Against a backdrop of riots and more sectarian violence, filmmaker Peter Ferris chose his home town to show his new film Seance to an invited audience at the cross-community Dockers Club. Seance was filmed using actors from his monthly screen acting masterclasses that he runs in the city.

For the past four years, Ferris has been working with ordinary people from both sides of the political divide including working-class Irish-speaking nationalists, an ex-soldier as well as Belfast’s other ethnic minorities.

“I knew that we could lead the world in mobile filmmaking. People think that Northern Ireland has gone back 20 years due to the current pictures on the news but it is only a blip which is bound to happen in a delicately progressing peace process. We are all moving forward and our films show that we can lead the way in  film  and TV. We want to inspire people towards a future that is outward looking and not trapped by parochial insular fears which can so easily erupt into rioting and street violence ” said Ferris.

ferris, belfast

Peter Ferris, left, with members of his Belfast acting masterclass at the premiere of his latest film Seance

Seance is a story about a group of actors in Belfast, who have constantly been made aware that the venue they use for their regular acting classes is in fact haunted. They know the ‘Old Spirit’ has a message for them… so there is only one solution to find out what that message is….

Ferris shot the film raw, ie using no extra lighting, apps for accessories such as steadicams, mics or dollies. Results are impressive and the Galaxy Note’s 8 mega-pixel camera handled the low-light setting of the Seance extremely well.

So far, Ferris has shot 30 films at his masterclasses, which he also runs in Cardiff, London and Los Angeles. He switched to using smartphones last year when he heard about the new wave of mobile filmmaking driven by devices such as the iPhone, the Galaxy and some Nokia models.

He says he has used both the iPhone and the Samsung Galaxy but thinks the Note has the edge over the Apple device in many areas such as battery life. “The Note is also easier to handle than the iPhone, the iPhone tends to autofocus, which can be a problem, where as the Note doesn’t so it’s very good for tracking shots,” he says.

The Note also features 1080p Full HD video recording and playback and is as good, if not better than most smartphones for shooting video.

The Northern Irish filmmaker has been invited to show his work in Hollywood, as well as London and Belfast and his films have also been entered to international film festivals.

As Ferris says, the Irish have creativity in their souls, and now they have it in their hands, in the shape on a smartphone.

Watch the trailer for Seance here:

The Seance trailer 1 – Medium from Peter Ferris on Vimeo.

Declaration: Peter Ferris is a founding partner of the iPhone Popup Film Festival.

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About the author

Tony Myers has written 866 articles for Smart Movie Making

Fooling around with the iPhone since 2010. Taking it to the next web by writing about new media, new technology, new wave cinema and the digital revolution.

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