Oct. 24, 2012 - Issue #888: Winter Guide 2012
FAVA Profile: Katrina BeattyFor local filmmaker Katrina Beatty, it all began with her grandfather's 8 mm video camera and Celine Dion.
She and her friend would create their own music videos to Dion's famous tunes and their remakes still exist. Several years and an abundance of experience later, Beatty laughs at the thought of her childhood filmmaking endeavours—but it got the ball rolling.
"I feel like I've always known what I wanted to do, but it was a matter of how do I do what I want to do," Beatty, explains over coffee downtown. "I went to Vic [Victoria School of Performing and Visual Arts] and I got to start taking video classes in Grade 9 and I loved it, instantly loved it."
Beatty, who has now been accepted by Women in the Director's Chair, an organization committed to supporting women in film, continued her infatuation with filmmaking throughout high school, mentoring on her first set at 14 and establishing industry connections she still maintains today. Her journey took her to Quebec for post-secondary at the Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema at Concordia University, but after graduation, she made the decision to return home to Edmonton.
"I'm feeling quite settled here. I love how friendly Edmonton is to filmmakers. Everyone still gets excited by the idea of a movie," Beatty notes. "That energy is great for an indie producer or director, so I'm quite committed at this point to staying here and seeing if we can build up enough of an industry that all of the technicians and the actors want to stay as well."
During her time back in Edmonton, Beatty has continued to work in film in a variety of ways, but producing and directing are what she is drawn to.
"I'm a self-admitted control freak to a degree. I have learned to manage it," she laughs. "With the right people I fully trust them to do their job, but what I love about those two aspects is that I get to be a part of the storytelling from start to finish. I'm in it all the way."
Beatty's films focus on strong storytelling, with her credits including an associate producer as well as casting director credit on the feature film Money and a short narrative titled No Sharp Objects. Currently, she's in the midst of her first feature as director, a film with the working title Moments Between.
"It's just about how we only know as much about people as they let us," she explains of the film, which she co-wrote with a colleague, who will also play the starring role. "Everything I do seems to come back one way or another to being focused on relationships, just human relationships in that I try and stay away from the cliché of exploring romantic relationships. A lot of people are doing that and a lot of people are doing it very well, but I find it more interesting to explore other incredibly valid and important relationships in our lives that aren't necessarily of a romantic nature."
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