My Big Issue

28 May 2010 | 2 Comments
Don't Panic is all about DIY film making. This month on DPTV, we profile young aspiring film makers who have decided to just pick up a camera, head out into the world and point it at things they think interesting. First up is Oliver Beer, who did an internship at Don't Panic a while back. Here's his film about homelessness in the UK and a Q&A with the man himself.

Please introduce yourself and tell us how you became interested in film.
My name is Oly Beer, I’m 22 years old and, I’m a short filmmaker and writer. I first became interested in photography and film when my parents bought me a disposable camera on holiday.

What film making experience do you have?
I’m self-taught, I’ve made a couple of short films before but making ‘My Big Issue’ has been my biggest project to date.

What inspired you to begin this project?
When I was sixteen I saw poverty that I didn’t know existed, I was in South America on an early gap year after my GCSE’s. One night whilst walking through the city streets to meet some friends for drinks, a man who looked close to death from malnutrition and sadness approached me. His name was Juan and he was homeless. From then I knew that I wanted to make a short film from a homeless persons perspective. It wasn’t until a few years later the ideas went from pen and paper to me getting my camera out.

What did you find the most difficult/challenging part of making the film?
The most challenging part of making the film was the coordinating. It was quite a task to arrange who I was filming, where and when I was meeting them and, making sure they turned up! Although at points I found the editing process strenuous, in hindsight it was the part I enjoyed the most.

Did your perceptions of the homeless and homelessness change while making the film?
Originally When I set out to film I was apprehensive of what reception I would have from the people I was filming but they were really friendly and, even contributed ideas towards the film. This was great because I wanted to make the film from their perspective; it made the film true to the people that suffer from homelessness. I wouldn’t say that my perception of the homeless and homelessness changed but it made me understand in more depth the challenges they face everyday.

What's your next project?
I’m working on several other films at the moment. Some of them are only ideas at present but they include a short documentary about UKIP, another about Britain’s students drinking habits, a film about healthy eating and, one about the now legal drug mephedrone. I’m really excited about all of them.


  • Guest: Katyjames1
    Thu 02 - Sep - 2010, 01:44
  • Guest: tombarker
    Tue 10 - Aug - 2010, 20:21
    Extremely enterprising, I look forward to his next one.
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