What inspired you come up with the idea for the film?
A lot of inspiration came from my city, Montreal, with both its rampant auto theft as well as a lack of representation of people/communities outside of the French majority population being portrayed in stories about the city.
Why did you want to tell this story?
It was selected for development in a call for genre films, so I pitched a crime-thriller. After doing research into who is responsible for a majority of the auto theft crime in Montreal, I realized a teenage protagonist making difficult life choices as he navigates adolescence would be very compelling.
How do you relate to your characters or subjects?
I feel every teenager feels like an outsider growing up so I used my own high school experience as a launch off point to explore the feelings and anxieties we have at that pivotal age.
What aspect of the story changed the most during writing and production?
The characters were originally South Asian but due to casting we modified the main characters to being African American and more specifically Eritrean.
What was the most courageous decision you or your crew made during production?
To cut out a major action sequence I believed was crucial to the story but would’ve messed up the whole schedule. So I reluctantly cut it to save the schedule then in post the editor told me if we had shot the sequence he would’ve cut it for time in the edit anyway.
Where there any risks that you faced during production and how did you find a way to embrace them?
Racing cars without a ton of stunt people. We saved ourselves by making it very simple and planning out every shot.
What influenced the visual style of the film?
Neo-realism and gritty European crime films, most notably ‘Un Prophet’.
What risks did you take to tell your story?
Having a sympathetic main character who is also a criminal.
How would you encourage others to tell their story or manage through the process of screen writing or film producing
Persistence and caring more than anyone else in world about getting your film seen since no one else will ever make your film for you.
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