Recently, Cinema Australia asked Perth director JJ DeCeglie to give us some insight into the way he went about filming his new feature Jugular. The film will screen locally as part of Perth Monster Fest which begins on March 27 and runs until Arpil 2.
I shot Jugular as a one-man crew on a Canon 60d and a rigged-up crude steadicam. We’d done extensive testing before filming and I’d rewatched certain films like Nicolas Winding Refn’s Pusher for reference in terms of feel, colour and light.
I’d written the script as something I knew I could shoot on a micro-budget, using my apartment as the main location. It was just a matter of clearing everything into boxes or cupboards and then moving the left over stuff into another room when shooting scenes.
We would work around actors schedules to get stuff done, shoot guerrilla on the streets and trams of Melbourne and scouted locations based on what we could get; we didn’t pay for any locations, but there was much back and forth organising some. People and establishments were very generous to us.
I guess the biggest issue you have shooting this style is the lack of control in public spaces, cars and trams and people coming by and interrupting a take, which can add authenticity, but can also kill it technically.
Also, you’re kinda on the clock, using someone’s house, or apartment for three hours while they’re at work means you’ve gotta get that scene shot in that particular time frame, otherwise they’ll come home while you’re shooting arms full of shopping bags and done for the day. Last thing they wanna see is me and three actors pleading for thirty more minutes.
Next I’m shooting a comedy, micro-budget again, though this time in Perth, we’re gearing up right now.
Perth-born novelist JJ DeCeglie makes his feature film debut with Jugular, and what a debut it is! Tense, claustrophic and genuinely harrowing, Jugular follows one man’s nightmarish decent into the recesses of his own mind. Recesses from which there are no escape.
Jack is straight off the plane. He has few friends and no money. In desperation, he accepts an apartment formerly housed by the main suspect in a serial murder case – John Ellroy.
Plagued by insomnia, Jack broods in the apartment and wanders the inner-city streets of Melbourne. His loneliness leads him into a friendship with a teenage addict Janie, and into a bizarre obsession with Ellroy.
Jack struggles to retain his sanity as his world spirals into madness and violence.
Director JJ DeCeglie is a GUEST OF THE FEST and will be participating in a Q&A after the film. To find out more about Perth Monster Fest click here.
Directed by: JJ DeCeglie
Starring: Gregory Pakis, Kristen Condon, Fiannah de Rue