Nathan Hill (from Nathan Hill Productions ) is an acclaimed Melbourne Arthouse director and has just released a full length feature “Colourblind”, a follow up to “Revenge of the Gweilo,” which premiered in the Chinatown cinema chain. A leading Australian ‘budget’ director he has moved into a new and exciting phase of his film career.
“Colourblind” is an 80 minute feature, based around a murder/mystery, inspired by the Agatha Christie, Hitchock style “Vertigo,” done in the old style “film noire” style. It combines a lot of spy movie style, “which is really where my roots are at,” admits Nathan.
“It’s a return to the roots of the thriller type genre, I also have one of the leads Jane Badler, (remember the lead character Diana, in the Sci Fi “V” series many years ago. In my movie she plays Baxter an American woman with three daughters. The movie revolved around he, a broken down marriage and a younger daughter who has killed herself.”
“She hires a private investigator (Jaffy Rotunda) played by myself, to track the middle child who also might be suicidal.”
“The hook is that the private investigator tracking this girl, is colour blind, but when he sees this girl for the first time, she appears in colour. He thinks she is his soul mate, but she thinks he is just a creep.”
“Is he deluded? Or does he really see her in colour?” There are many subplots explains Nathan.
“The eldest daughter has also hired a private investigator. Both daughters are unaware of this, both private investigators meet up on the job and worlds collide.”
Being the writer I have had to be pretty clever with the red herrings, the twists and the cliff hanger ending.
Advertising screams “Sometimes You Need to Look Twice.” We think of the lead character, the colour-blind detective who sees his client in colour, we look to the two sisters and the two detectives. There are in fact plenty of “twices” in ‘Colour Blind.’
“Then there is the girl who is looking at the detective with tunnel vision, but if she looks at him again she may see an opportunity for love.”
‘It’s a movie I hope you’ll watch twice to try and figure out all the levels. The crux is this private investigator trying to figure out what is happening in this family without getting all the information he needs.”
A violent break up at the start of the movie acts as a breaker to reality, where we see the main character in a less than favorable light. The movie is in fact a tale of redemption as we grow to like this character,m moving away from our first impressions, then tend to un-neccesarily colour our view of his actions”
Nathan likens the movie to a David Lynch film, where the principal character is shown in a series of cuts each somewhat un-related to the other, but all having a thread that draws together as the movie sucks you in. “I like playing with the time line, so the audience is never sure whether it is present day or past.”
Nathan gives as a clue as to the passing of time, past band future. The detective has been beaten up badly and has a “horrific black eye”, as time progresses. His eye heals. “Follow that eye!”
Preparing himself to write the script, Nathan spent many hours researching the lonely world of the private investigator, a world he describes as soul destroying for these guys following the lives of other people.
Armed with a wish list for actors Nathan head hunted Jane Badler (she had worked with Nathan before on a short film,) Ian Rooney from Doctor Blake, Nick Wightman from “Hide and Seek” also returns to work with Nathan. “I probably got 75% from my wish list.”
What was the most difficult scene for you to film as an actor?
‘I had a fight scene with Jake Ryan (Home & Away, Wolf Creek series, Great Gatsby). He was a national Taekwondo Champion, I was a State Champion. It was going to be interesting. But when we did the scene it was just perfect.”
“I was lucky.”
Watch out for the colour grading of the film.Nathan was very particular about getting the right “feel” for the saturation.
“We took out all the red when we shot it,” he explains. “When we looked at the rushes when we were putting it together, it already had that washed out feeling. So when we went to grey I only had to tweek it!”
“It is really me trying to maker a stand and say “Look guys this is me, I can direct, this is a proper feature film!”
At present it is on Amazon.prime.
Stars: Nathan Hill, Anne Gauthier, Jane Badler, Nick Wightman, Anica Brown, Ian Rooney, Mardi Edge, Jake Ryan, David Macrae, Marty Rhone, Frederique Fouche, Leslie Lawrence and Thomas Morris star in the film written by Hill and produced by Hill and Michael Siu.