Updated: Aug 29
While in quarantine I decided to have a bit of fun by interviewing The Mitoté director Frank Bennett. At just 19, he took on pretty much every key creative role in the film, including that of cinematographer, composer, editor, director, co-writer and actor! He has very unique, beautiful and eye-opening perspectives on the world that shine through into all that he creates in such captivating ways. He is also one of my favourite people on this earth! So I wanted to give you a little peak inside his mind...
I've split this up into two parts. Part One is more about creativity in general. Part Two is focussed on the making of The Mitoté.
Frank, What is your favourite film?
The Matrix & Revolver
Richard Linklater & David Lynch
What inspires you to make movies?
I have always found a way to express myself creatively, even before I knew I was doing it, with intricate imaginative games as a child, to drawing, writing, music, photography. I was continuously compelled to be creative throughout my childhood, and after exploring these mediums and others, film came as almost the pinnacle medium, as it combined all of the things I had done before into the one seamless artform.
I love film and movies for their immersivity, boundless possibilities, and their ability to carry a voice far and wide. I guess I’m inspired to make movies because it is the medium I am most enveloped by at the moment, and I feel I will be for some time, and it also allows for me to continue with music and writing and such. I am also just really excited to see what will happen, I thoroughly enjoy the entire creative process involved with making films, and am currently compelled to keep making them.
What inspires you in general?
Life! Observing the phenomenon of existence in this moment is inspiration enough for me.
Do you have a creative process? What is your relationship with ideas, art and creativity?
I haven’t really formed a replicable process or routine yet, but this is something I’m working on creating. Nonetheless, whenever I sit down to create, I must be carrying a certain amount of clarity and stillness in order to be productive, and some ways that I find bring me into this space include going for a swim in the ocean, walking amongst nature, or some other form of mindfulness practice.
Well, my relationship with these things would be love...
Art is something that can’t really be defined, but I could easily go as far as to say that everything within this existence we call life, is art. That’s how I perceive it, anyway. There is no shortage of art and artists; in fact the number is infinite, from the ants and spiders, to the bark on a tree, to the clouds and even the space between the clouds. And to me, this is the most wondrous thing there is, and I could be entirely satisfied with simply witnessing the beauty embedded in all there is, manifest and unmanifest.
But, then there are ideas, and ideas are like the art of existence tapping you on the shoulder and pointing you towards a new little oasis that you hadn’t seen before and maybe nobody has ever seen it before, and saying “go play!’ Ideas are such blessings, and from my experience the only way to have or truly embrace an idea is to let go, allow, and soften any resistance and you might have and they will come, with some intent of course. The same applies for being creative in general, it all begins with letting go.
You're a young man of many creative passions, tell us a bit about your music, photography and anything else.
Music has been a huge part of my life for as long as I can remember. Neither of my parents played an instrument, although dad played enough music to make up for that, but they insisted I try piano when I was five. This was a beautiful gift that spiralled into a deep-rooted love for music, and after a foundation of piano and classical guitar, I learnt to play drums, joined bands, and was continuously evolving musically.
I stumbled into photography when I was about 11 - I was in the post office with my mum and spotted a little Fujifilm Finepix camera - and became immersed in capturing images for quite some time. I had always been the introverted observer, so this accompanied me perfectly. Since then I haven’t really put down my camera, I’ll even go all cliché and say it has become an extension of myself.
I’ve always really enjoyed writing, too. When I was pretty young I started writing short stories, and would fill journals with poems and songs, and last year I wrote an album which I’m really happy with, and I’m about to get onto recording it which is really exciting.
… To be continued in Part Two...
Stay tuned! And in the meantime you can find out more about Frank by visiting his website; www.frankbennett.me
Or find The Mitoté on IMDB.
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