Derry filmmaker hits Cannes film festival

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Derry filmmaker Danny Patrick Ogle has mixed emotions about one of his films, Maltese Connection, which won an award at the very prestigious Cannes Film Festival – delighted to have received this accolade but heartbroken he did not. could not attend the scintillating awards ceremony due to Covid -19 restrictions. Here, Danny Patrick looks back on a career that has seen him work with some of the biggest names on the big screen and talks about returning to his hometown to film his latest production, Pulcinella, starring Jaime Winstone and Julian Glover.

Danny Patrick is the writer / director of film company Empire Productions. He recently returned to record Pulcinella, the fourth film he has shot in his hometown.

Danny Patrick said: “It’s based on an Italian opera (and an original Punch and Judy show) and it’s the school play they are staging in the movie, however, it reflects real life. and what the characters are going through.

“The story takes place in Portrush and we shot there for all the outdoor scenes. However, all interiors were shot in Derry to facilitate production and to know where to film.

Danny Patrick has said Derry is a “great” place to film.

He said: “It’s a great place with nice people and amazing backdrops with a mix of history and the new years of turmoil that followed.

“There is a lot of talent in Derry, both in front and behind the camera, so we were able to complement our cast and our team with locals.

“Pulcinella is the fourth film I made in Derry, apart from reshoots on Moussaka & Chips. Unlike other places, there are fewer restrictions and people are more open to assist or allow filming at their workplace. ”

He conceded that filming during the Covid-19 restrictions was not easy.

“It was difficult, especially keeping everyone in a ‘bubble’ – we had risk assessments and mitigation measures, like testing every three days and when either of the new members distribution was coming in. There was a cost for all these tests that we had to integrate, but it had to be done to allow us to make the film. “

Danny’s first feature film was called Malicious Intent and starred former world featherweight boxing champion Barry McGuigan of Monaghan.

Danny Patrick said: “The story was about a brother with completely opposite goals on a collision course. It was shot in London and it was difficult like all productions because the things you learn cannot be explained or read in a book, you have to live them and learn from them.

His other films include Moussaka & Chips, starring Mike Reid, Ron Moody and Jack Wild, The Best Years with Martin Kemp in the lead role and Requiem for a Fighter, starring Kim Kold.

Danny said Maltese Connection, shot in Derry and Malta, was a “semi-sequel / reboot” of Moussaka & Chips.

He added: “Everything that worked in this film came back in Maltese, everything that didn’t work was rewritten.

The film received the award for best independent film at the Cannes Film Festival.

Danny Patrick said: “It was amazing. However, because of the Covid, it was the first year since 2014 that I was not in Cannes. It was heartbreaking not being able to pick it up in person.

“It was a shock because the movie won’t be released until October, so I’m still trying to find out if people will like it.”

Danny Patrick is the eldest of six children of the famous couple Derry, Danny and Margaret Ogle. He remembers his first visit to the cinema. “The first movie I remember my dad taking me to was Disney’s The Black Hole, and it haunted my nightmares with two images, Maximillion (The Bad Robot), killing Anthony Perkins with his blades through a book , and the final image of Dr. Hans caught inside the robot deep in the black hole.

The Strand Cinema was Danny’s “home” where he would see films such as Superman 2, Back to the Future, Rocky 4 and most of the Hollywood blockbusters of the 1980s.

After attending Steelstown and Slievemore Primary Schools, Danny attended Templemore Secondary School on Northland Road before going to the University of Reading, which led him to settle in London.

He explained: “I met my best friend in Reading – we’re still best friends – and moved to London as roommates.”

So how did the making of the film go?

He added: “I’ve always been interested in playing, especially in school – it was a great way out of school. My writing has always been imaginative – supported by my English teacher, Ms. Jennifer Gormley. I didn’t know it would lead to the movies. However, I started writing short films and then moved on to feature films.

“Having always been interested in movies, I worked out some of the tricks they use in movies to convey information and how that impacted people and wanted to learn how to do that for my own stories. “

Danny Patrick’s advice to any young person considering getting into filmmaking is, “Just go do your movie, whether it’s short or long – take advice where you can, but don’t let it go.” never discourage. ”

Despite an award at the Cannes Film Festival, Danny Patrick revealed his “dream”: “For me, a television series that spans four, five-seven seasons. Like all shows, the first season is always cautious and limited, as no one knows if it will work, but season two and, most importantly, three and four, the show is on its way – everyone knows their characters and the team is in bed. , the only limits are your imagination.


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