Ensnared is the first offering from new production company Spade Lion Productions. The company is made up of magician/illusionist Steve Spade and director/writer Paddy Murphy. Ensnared is a short film based around a young man who learns that he can’t trust his mind. Scannain caught up with Paddy to have a chat with him about the film and what happens next
Paddy, first of all tell us how Spade Lion Productions came about?
I had been working with Steve Spade for about four months, doing his marketing and PR stuff. We were driving up and down to events and chatting. We realised the two of us had a massive interest in film and theatre. As a writer I would have loved to have a production company to send my stuff to, so we decided to set one up. Steve has the name really with Spade because he is recognised and the Lion too! I’m not in the name anyway. I just come up with all the ideas!
Ensnared is quite a dark film, where did the idea come from?
I live in quite a rural area outside Limerick and I was walking down the riverside and I just saw a little ripple in the water and that was the first inspiration. I ran home and wrote the story. The more I think about the more I realise that it comes from struggles I’ve had myself in the past with mental health and depression. I came to the realisation that there is nothing scarier than being trapped in your own head. There are elements of me in John’s (the main character) character. When Kevin came on board he really expanded the character of John. The person I wrote about had a limited amount of emotions but Kevin really brought lots more out of him.
There is quite a lot of limerick based talent in the film, was that something that was important to you?
Yeah definitely for the first short, my directorial debut, it was important. We are working on the second short already and that one will have more of a focus on international actors
How did you manage to get Kevin Kiely Jnr?
It was all down to Steve! He pretty much can get whatever he wants. We needed an actor for the main role and he went and got him. Kevin really made me become serious about it all. He forced us to take it seriously and be professional!
Was it a scary prospect putting something so honest and personal out there for the world to see?
Not really no. I’m hoping that people who have had a similar experience will relate to it. The goal is to have people talking about mental heath again.
Is it difficult to make friends/contacts in the film community in Dublin?
Yeah it can be. It’s a small community and I’m generally doing post production stuff so I can’t get out. Hopefully Ensnared makes a difference with that. I am looking forward to bringing it to the screenings.
You have mentioned that it wasn’t a smooth shoot, what type of things went wrong?
Well it was all logistical issues. We had one day to shoot as Kevin was very busy. There was an incident where the equipment didn’t turn up and we needed an underwater camera. We ended up putting a mobile phone in a coffee jar and it put it int he water and it worked!
You’re working on the next short, can we get a sneak peek?
I can’t say too much or else I’ll give it away! It’s another horror but this time it didn’t come from my mind! Myself and Steve were in the car and Steve had this concept. We agreed it should be made in to a short. I started writing the script, I have about seven pages done. It’ll be about a 14 page script. We are hoping to begin shooting in October,
What are the plans for screenings of Ensnared?
We have two coming up in Limerick. One the 25th August we are in the Red Hen in Limerick and on the 28th we are in Cellar Door Foxes Bow. We are hoping to have a good few screenings around the country too. Ultimately we will be taking it to all the film festivals too.
Have you anything else you are working on?
Well Spade Lion is a theatre company too so we are working on a new stage show for Steve. It’ll be more theatrical than magic but there will be some magic in there too. It has a story to it. It’s going to be a really interesting show. We are writing it at the moment and that’s set for October too.
Keep an eye out on the site for details of screenings of Ensnared and in the mean time you can pop on over to their Facebook page to keep up to date with the latest news.