Interested in community building through art-making? Building from short films to features? Low-budget independent feature film- making? Working with non-professional actors? Join us as director Randall Okita, Reel Asian regular and our Canadian Spotlight Artist last year, discusses the making of his feature film debut, The Lockpicker with members of the production. The Lockpicker was a product of an innovative creation process where young students from Toronto Central Academy were empowered to participate both on and off the camera.
Randall Lloyd Okita is a Canadian artist and filmmaker whose work employs sculpture, technology, physically challenging performances or stunt-work, and rich cinematography. His work has been shown in both group and solo exhibition, awarded internationally, and screened at festivals around the world, including retrospective screenings of his short film catalogue in San Francisco and Toronto.
Randall’s feature film, The Lockpicker, was created through a unique partnership with a Toronto high school and an innovative production methodology developed to invite students to collaborate in the making of the film. It was made with the support of Telefilm Canada, The Canada Council for the Arts, the Ontario Arts Council and a Technicolour Post-Production Grant awarded by TIFF Director Piers Handling as part of his TFCA Clyde Gilmour Award.
Keigian Umi Tang is a first time actor having worked most his time behind the camera this is most certainly a change of pace for him. Favourite activities include plugging in large lights and riding a unicycle.
Tania Thompson is a curator and producer specializing in work that bridges art and the commercial, often working directly with multidisciplinary artists on all facets of their career development. She is the Creative Director of Sunday Drive Art Projects, an arts organization that mounts large exhibitions of contemporary art outside metropolitan areas. As a producer, Tania was the in-house executive producer for POV, a youth film program governed by a coalition of Toronto’s top production companies. She holds a BFA from York University and is a graduate of the competitive Schulich School of Business WIFT-T Media Leadership Program for Media Executives. She continues to operate independently through her company ReDefinery. The Lockpicker is her first feature as a producer.
Jason Lapeyre is a director and screenwriter working in both film and television. His first feature, Cold Blooded, won Best Canadian Film at Fantasia 2012. His second feature, I Declare War, starring a cast entirely made up of 14-year-olds, was an official selection of the 2012 Toronto International Film Festival, won the Audience Award for Best Film at Fantastic Fest the same year, and was released theatrically by Drafthouse Films. His next feature is The Crawlers, adapted from a Philip K. Dick story and produced by Edward R. Pressman (Wall Street, American Psycho). He has directed MOWs for the Lifetime network, most recently Who Killed Jonbenét?, which premieres in November 2016. Jason has taught classes on screenwriting and directing at the Winnipeg Film Group, L.I.F.T., the Etobicoke School of the Arts, and the Manitoba Theatre for Young People. He created and facilitated a one-year curriculum at Toronto General Hospital’s Inpatient Psychiatry Unit, in which he mentored patients in the creation of short films during their recovery process. He continues to give filmmaking workshops at inpatient psychiatry units throughout the city of Toronto.