With the 25th Anniversary of
the Dusty Film & Animation Festival just around the corner (May 10 – 13 at the SVA Theatre), SVA Close Up is checking in with some of the College’s many successful alumni making names for themselves in the world of film, video and animation. For the third installment of the series, the spotlight is on stereographer Alonso Homs (BFA 2008 Film and Video), whose credits include Blue Valentine, The Great Gatsby and HBO’s Girls. Homs recently took some time out of his busy schedule to answer a few questions via e-mail.
When did you realize that filmmaking was what you wanted to do with your life?
When I was in middle school, back in Mexico. I had no idea what filmmaking would entail, but my instincts were telling me that I would enjoy the process and I was absolutely right.
What makes a great film?
First and foremost, a great script. Secondly, a visionary director that is able to see past the challenges of day-to-day filmmaking and able to focus on the overall arc of the story and the performance of the actors—and ALL of the crew.
If you could have dinner with three filmmakers, dead or alive, who would they be and why?
Krzysztof Kieslowski: He was able to explore his stories to a degree of spirituality that I haven’t seen in any other director’s work. His work was cutthroat and really objective, but with an unbeatable sense of humanity at the same time.
Hal Ashby: I would love to talk to him about how great editors make great directors, and why that is.
Federico Fellini: I don’t love his movies as much as most people do, but I do know that he must have thrown a hell of a party.
If you find yourself stuck in a creative rut, what gets you out of it?
I go out for a run. I find that moving around and putting your body through physical strain gets you out of a stagnant mindset.
How did your time at SVA prepare you for what you’re doing today?
Well, it was a whole, long journey of intense learning. Not only on a theory level, but on a personal level as well. It was the time when I became independent, when
I realized that whatever I was going to achieve in life was up to me. And then there were also all the connections that I made that eventually got me jobs. Networking is key!
What advice would you give aspiring filmmakers?
Be courageous enough to give up doing what you don’t love doing to pursue what you do love doing. That’s it. Everything else falls into place, as long as you work hard for it.
Image: Alonso Homs on the set of The Great Gatsby.