Letter carrier delivers top national film prize
(note: Ryan is out of town this week but returning on Monday, Dec. 12)
Letter carrier by day, award-winning film director by night, Simon Fraser University School for the Contemporary Arts’ student Ryan Flowers is receiving accolades for his short film No Words Came Down, chosen as one of Canada’s Top Ten Short Films of 2011.
The award was announced Dec. 6 at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF).
The announcement arrives on the heels of “No Words Came Down” receiving the prize for Best Student Shortwork at the 11th annual Whistler Film Festival this past weekend.
“No Words Came Down” is the story of a young man who is set up on a blind date with an older woman. Despite their differences, they carry on with the date, exchanging few words but reaching a quiet understanding of each other.
Flowers, who wrote the film and directed the project with fellow SFU SCA students Lisa Pham (co-director) and Tyler Hagan (director of photography), spends his mornings working as a letter carrier for Canada Post, delivering the mail in Vancouver’s historic Chinatown district to help fund his education.
“It’s a great set-up, I get out of bed, work for four hours [with Canada Post], and then have the opportunity financially to make films at night,” says Flowers, adding that No Words Came Down is semi-autobiographical."
[The film] is about people who have trouble connecting with other people. I was actually set up on a blind date once, with a woman who was much older than I am, but when I started writing the story it became a little darker. There are lonely people out there trying to connect and I hope people can try and see beyond the façade.”
For an encore, Flowers is currently working on a documentary along with a personal friend who suffers from schizophrenia and is also looking for an opportunity to work with Pham, Hagan and fellow SCA students down the road.
“Our class actually made a pact to team up and make a feature film together,” explains Flowers, who also received the award for Best Fiction Production at the 42nd annual Canadian Student Film Festival in Montreal. “We are going to schedule a meeting soon. Hopefully this recognition will help get this project off the ground.”