Filmmaking is an art form that allows creators to share their stories, perspectives, and experiences with the world. It is a powerful medium that has the ability to entertain, provoke thought, inspire change, and connect people from different backgrounds. In a Virtual Film Festival chat with filmmaker Shalyse Dominique, we gain insights into her background, inspirations, challenges as a filmmaker, and her passion for creating meaningful content.
A Multicultural Upbringing:
Growing up in Milwaukee provided Dominique with a rich tapestry of experiences that influenced her artistic journey. She admires old-school filmmakers who pioneered groundbreaking work in horror and science fiction without the advanced technology available today. Influenced by Kenneth Johnson’s work, she is inspired to integrate interactive elements into her own projects and explore distribution opportunities within the NFT space.
Admiration for Old-School Filmmakers:
Dominique expresses admiration for old-school filmmakers who paved the way in genres like horror and science fiction without access to advanced technology. She cites Kenneth Johnson’s work as one of her inspirations. Embracing the innovative opportunities offered by WEB 3 platforms such as NFTs will allow Dominique to integrate interactive elements into her own filmmaking strategy while exploring new avenues of distribution and collaboration.
The Inspiration Behind “Legal Threat”:
“Legal Threat,” created by Shalyse Dominique, emerged from a desire to create a film that conveyed personal feelings and thoughts—thus unlearning certain paradigms ingrained within society. The movie serves as an exploration of paradigm shifts experienced by individuals willing to challenge societal norms. It was through helping other filmmakers that she realized the importance of telling stories close to one’s heart. In this film, she expresses a paradigm shift experienced firsthand while exploring themes of unlearning ingrained beliefs.
Importance of Multicultural Representation in Film:
Throughout the casting process for “Legal Threat,” Dominique sought multicultural talent through Craigslist referrals and serendipitous connections in order to ensure inclusivity. Although she stresses that more women need to be represented in the industry, she also acknowledges that women hold power—a finding she has made throughout her career.
Working Hard to Achieve Goals:
It is evident in Dominique’s filmmaking style that she has an independent mindset. She recognizes the benefits of platforms for distributing films; however, also identifies the potential of WEB 3 platforms to allow artists to have a global impact. The ability to assert oneself within these spaces enables filmmakers like Dominique to reach global audiences with meaningful and innovative content by establishing a strong presence there.
Challenges Faced during Post-Production:
Post-production proved challenging for Dominique due to incorporating sci-fi elements into “Legal Threat” without making them look cheesy or dated. Learning composite work from scratch was no easy feat but essential in achieving the minimalist aesthetic she desired.
Unforeseen Challenges and Creative Solutions:
During production, an ambitious plan involving lasers and fog effects in a gymnasium didn’t unfold as expected. However, Dominique creatively augmented characters’ goggles with glowing elements—a visually appealing alternative that enhanced the scene’s overall impact.
Advice for Aspiring Filmmakers:
Dominique advises aspiring filmmakers to believe in their stories passionately, network actively, participate in platforms like Hollywood DAO and NFT studios, showcase their work widely, and connect with other creators who can provide support, guidance, inspiration on their journey towards success.
The Changing Landscape of Film:
Dominique discusses how the film industry needs new original characters of color rather than simply reimagining existing ones—for example: casting actors of color as James Bond—highlighting diversity truly begins by creating fresh narratives that represent all cultures authentically. She also reflects on how film school can be beneficial but not necessarily a prerequisite for success—a sentiment validated by her own experiences collaborating with talented individuals outside formal education settings. Collaborating with her mother, who studied costume design, was a rewarding experience that ensured the cast was well-dressed.
Challenges & Post-Production Process:
Post-production proved challenging as Dominique aimed for a seamless integration of sci-fi elements without appearing cheesy or dated. She had to learn composite work from scratch but maintained a minimalist approach to the overall aesthetic.
Supporting Young Female Filmmakers:
A discussion emerges about inspiring young girls supported by guidance throughout their creative journeys—an opportunity where filmmakers like Dominique can connect with young women, provide platforms for their work, and serve as mentors. Recognizing the talent and creativity of children from the iPad
Interactions at the Virtual Film Festival:
During the Virtual Film Festival chat, Dominique appreciated the audience’s support and interaction. Being inducted into the Starseed Film and Music Virtual Film Festival Hall of Fame and receiving an NFT award were unexpected honors that inspired gratitude and anticipation for future collaborations.
Conclusion: An Inspiring Journey Ahead:
Shalyse Dominique’s journey as a filmmaker is marked by determination, creativity, and dedication to meaningful storytelling. As she continues on this path while embracing new technologies like WEB 3 platforms and exploring creative avenues within NFTs, audiences eagerly await her upcoming projects—a testament to her talent and vision.
In an industry hungry for fresh perspectives, Shalyse Dominique stands out as an emerging voice telling stories that challenge paradigms while celebrating diversity—her unique blend of experiences shaping narratives that resonate deeply with audiences worldwide.
*Virtual Film Festival with Geno Martin and Tonya Scholz interviewed filmmaker Shalyse Dominique via Twitter Spaces on February 16, 2022.
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