(January 11th, 2012) Director John Dolan was in Buffalo recently shooting footage for a new national TV campaign. With a career spawned in theatre and short film,he’sestablished a unique position in commercial production directing high profile yet edgy creative for clients such as BMW, ESPN, and Volkswagon.
John took time out to give the Buffalo Film Office some feedback following his Buffalo shoot.
Your impression of Buffalo and the locations you chose?
I Loved Buffalo. It reminds me a bit of St. Paul, the city where I was born. There are some great locations there with real character. I especially like the street (Allen Street) where we shot. Great neighborhood with some real characters.”
You used an Arri Alexa to shoot your footage, why? Impressions of this camera? New features that you find useful?
The Alexa is incredible, especially in low light. I shoot almost everything now with it. Technically it produces a flawless image, but more importantly I like the texture and feel of the image. There’s an X-factor that distinguishes it from other digital camera systems. I suppose it looks more like film, which is a good thing.
Advice for aspiring Film Makers?
You don’t have to have great gear to make an inspired film. The best film’s, whether they’re commercials, features, etc. are about great concepts and ideas. About great acting. Concentrate more on the ideas, the writing, than on the technique. Audiences will forgive technique, but they won’t forgive tired or uninspired ideas. Or bad acting.
What inspires you as a Director?
Books. Art. Exercise. Nature. Travel. People. Lot’s of things.