Crossing Paths

Today we are going to talk with Director Daniel Abdilla about the film Crossing Paths. Crossing Paths is a Maltese short which was produced in 48 hours.


What I really like about this short is that it gives us a story in a true Maltese identity. The director managed to capture the Maltese ambience and culture with very simple shots. He also managed to show the colorful ambience that we have.


Also I must say that I felt that Daniel and his team made a very good job. For example: the actor’s performance felt realistic (which is a rare thing to see in Malta).


Watch the Movie: 


 Can you please tell us about yourself and what are your dreams?


I'm Daniel, 22 years old, just finished BSC in Software Development at MCAST. Although I still have no tangible future plans, my dream would that one day, I'd be able to produce films like Spielberg. My first try at filming something came in 2006 were I produced and shot a medieval comedy called 'Tale of a Strange World', with two close friends of mine, influenced at that time by Lord of the Rings and Monty Python. This can be found on my youtube(undoproductions) channel and totally sucks. The only thing that still impresses me, is how I convinced 25 people to come and take part! Last summer I was going to be an Assistant Art Director on a Maltese TV series which is to be aired in October, but had to leave the project after few weeks to be able to finish my studies.


 What's the real message behind this film?


 Although when writing the script for this short we didn't think of any real message to pass, I think one message came out during those 48 hours; hard-working Teamwork can help achieve what is impossible in the eyes of the others and nothing is more rewarding (in filming) than watching people react to your work.


You made this film in 48hours. How did you manage to do that? Does the 48hours include the editing and preparation for this movie or just the filming?


The 48 hours included all the phases of film, from script writing to editing. Only the team members and the equipment where prepared beforehand. This event is now in it's 6th year and it's the first time that was open on an international scale. There were almost 130 participants from all over the world, including us! We registered for the competition online and on Friday 13th May, me and my fellow team mates were given a Genre and a Line of Dialogue which we had to stick to for the competition. We got a Conspiracy Thriller Genre. Some 7 hours later, (2am in the skate park near university) we had a short story, decided who's gonna act what and the place where to shoot. The following day was spent filming from 9am till 5pm, while on Sunday all the editing and music was done. The finished product was uploaded just seconds into the 48 hour mark.


This film is filmed in Malta. Did you find any obstacles during filming? What's the real message behind this film?



Apart from a guy who wanted us to film him, claiming that he was Ozzy Osborne's brother, none. The amount of colour, vivacity and life that this little island holds is impressive and no wonder we had 10 major productions filming here this year. I've been in different places from NY to Sydney, nothing compares to Malta.



This film also won 'People's Choice Award' at the 48 hour Guerilla Film Competition. Are you satisfied by this achievement?


Couldn't be more happy! The team and all of our close friends really did a good promotional campaign so that we could win this award. It means a lot getting all this feedback as it was clear that our work was appreciated.



You filmed this film with Nikon D7000 and Canon 550D and I'm really impressed by the depth of the field. But why using 2 different cameras?



Both are great cameras and their capabilities are truly unique and revolutionary in filming. The first reason we used both was to get as much footage as possible due to the limited time we had. The second was a photographic aspect. The depth of field was achieved by using two prime lenses, one 35mm and one 50mm. We used the 35mm on the Nikon for the majority of the shots. With the 35mm a polarizer and a ND filter where used achieving a far greater quality. The Canon with 50mm was used for close-ups and detail shots. The picture achieved by both isn't the same, each has its highs and lows, but having two cameras is indispensable, especially in conversations.


 Any final comments?



Thank you Chris, Matthias, Mark, Kyle & Ian - the team for the 48Hour competition.



Any future projects?


Right now I'm editing a short film which I started working on last September. The story is from a book which is to be released soon by a good friend of mine, John Naudi. This short, titled 'The Choice', included a larger crew, cast and budget. Filming was done over five days. Hopefully in the coming weeks it will be online for every one to see. Another small project I'm working on is a Timelapse Tilt & Shift video on Malta. This is going to take some time to finish as till now 3 hours spent taking 1018 photos resulted only in 20 seconds of footage! But the result will be an amazing one, in which Malta will be featured as a miniature model!