Hungry Eye speaks to Avril Furness, our Filmmaking Diploma graduate...
“Being taught by film industry professionals was inspiring. Having masterclasses with people like Jan Harlan, Stanley Kubrick’s Exec Producer, Dame Diana Elizabeth Rigg, Actor, Richard Kwietniowski, Director and others inspired a real connection and an honest depiction of the film industry. Brilliant to have stories regaled directly from their experience.
I loved the pitching process. There were 12 of us in the filmmaking diploma group, and of course, we all wanted to direct. Part of the process in the 2nd or 3rd term was to write scripts and then individuals in the group would write treatments on their favourite script, to then pitch their Director’s vision of that script to a panel. I loved the competitive element of the process. It gave a flavour of what the real film industry was like. I enjoyed the treatment writing and presenting that vision to an audience with the potential promise of landing the job of directing at the other end, which I was fortune enough to succeed at! I went on to direct a 4-minute short film with ‘Made in Chelsea’s’ Lucy Watson (which was a huge learning curve, but very rewarding).”
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Avril Furness is an Independent Virtual Reality, 360 and Film Director, Writer, Producer based in London.
Having a background as a Creative at London advertising agencies Fallon and Wieden + Kennedy, Avril is driven to tell compelling stories and ideas that grip the viewer.
Avril’s debut VR film ‘The Last Moments’ is an interactive Virtual Reality 360 docudrama that allows the viewer to experience an assisted suicide and either end their life or carry on living, shot in a replica of a room at Dignitas, Switzerland. The film was nominated for Best Director at the BAFTA-affiliated UnderWire Festival (2016), and was nominated for a ‘Most Immersive Award’ at Encounters Film Festival (2017).
Since graduating from film school in 2015, Avril has had success in having films she has written, produced and directed screened at many festivals including: -Indiewire, UnderWire, London Short Film Festival, Hyperdrive Sci-Fi & Fantasy Film Festival, Comicpalooza Film Festival, SCI-FI- LONDON Film Festival, Flicks International Student Short Film Festival, Encounters Film Festival, and at The British Film Institute as part of their Media and Education programme.
Avril recently shot ‘The Empathy Machine’ 360 VR-Noir Sci-Fi Murder Mystery film in collaboration with The Roundhouse Theatre, London. The film is currently being submitted to festivals and is due to be shown as part of The Last Word Festival 2018 at The Roundhouse, London.
Avril is currently developing several Virtual Reality film projects and art installation ideas.