As a close friend and film school buddy it only seemed like a matter of time before Tyler Cyrenne shared his view for this series. To me, Tyler has always embodied a lot of that film school optimism and belief that bigger things were just around the corner. It's really been in just the last couple of years though that his approach has become even more assertive: starting a blog, entering contests, and creating original videos on his own terms. Plus, I have to say his involvement and assistance in many of my film school shorts and personal projects in recent years has also reflected his ambition, for which I very much appreciate.
With his stint in film school being one of the longest (sorry Tyler, I had to say it) of anyone I know, he's now starting a new chapter. I look forward to seeing how he decides to pursue his filmmaking in a professional/commercial capacity in the years ahead. In continuation with this new series of posts, readers, viewers, and dreamers, Cinematic Acrobatic Presents: Tyler Cyrenne.
1. Who is Tyler Cyrenne?
I’m a 25 year old filmmaker from Regina, Saskatchewan. I was born in the small town of Ponteix, Saskatchewan, where a lack of productive activities drove me to movies as a form of escape. With no local movie theatre, I either had to rely on TV, buying or renting, or driving an hour to the closest theatre. This meant every movie I got to see on the big screen became a privilege, and was rare, which made me appreciate the cinema more, and added a permanent magic to all things movies. And once I found out people could go to school for filmmaking, what I wanted to do became very clear at that point.
2. As someone who went to film school, was it worth it for you?
Definitely. Even if most of film school was BS classes, the production aspect of it provided a practice ground for the basis of what making a well thought out film entails. And being able to constantly have your work critiqued by professionals and colleagues (other than moms and relatives) was an invaluable if not occasionally harsh way of letting you know if A) you have what it takes and B) how to get in the habit of always aiming higher and always experimenting no matter how little or pointless. Filmmaking isn’t always about how much money you can make or how successful you become; it’s about whether you have the passion to keep pushing yourself enough and not give up so that eventually the rest falls into place. The friends I made during film school going through this insane process have lasted thus far and I believe will last a life time.
3. What about movie-making inspires you?
Movies are unglamorous to make, cumbersome to put together, time consuming and a pain in the ass - but it's all for the sake of feeling something at the end of it. Be it a feeling of accomplishment for the filmmaker, a laugh from the viewer, or a whole date planned around seeing a movie and getting that first kiss after. To put something out there that creates so many memories, and contains so much life; to know that without that one small idea that arose out of a joke, or an everyday situation none of it might have happened or have had as nig of impact, is the most rewarding thing someone can do.
4. If you had to choose a single project you've made or participated in to showcase your style, which would it be and why?
I would say it’s 4th Year Film Project. Now, it’s not one of my most pristine or well thought out projects, that’s more likely to be something like Gilligan. But, from start to finish on 4th Year, I wanted something that would appeal to my core audience – and at the time that was my friends and I. So, the script was always based around the inside jokes or sayings we had at that moment. The film was intended to capture that moment in time, so that I could watch it later on down the road and just laugh. I’m very nostalgic for the old times so to sum up my entire film school experience it was the only thing that made sense to do at the time. The same goes for my involvement in the Buick to the Future series - it’s about getting together with your friends, and capturing that moment. Which is why there’s four in the series so far, I imagine. Because when you find something that works, it’s becomes not only easier and easier to add on to that storyline, but it’s more and more fun, and almost addictive.
5. Passion, Creativity, Drive - Choose ONE.
Passion, hands down. Passion for something means it’s all you think about. You live and you breathe it, it becomes a part of your being. If you have passion, creativity and drive will fall into place. For me it’s a natural evolution.
6. Seeing as you've helped me with a number of my shorts, I should ask, what has that experience been like from your perspective?
Rewarding. I say that for two reasons. One, it’s nice not having the (albeit light) pressure of having to write the script or work the camera or edit it later on. All I do is go over the script, show up and get to act silly. Then I wait a few days, and I get to see the fruits of our labor. Not to mention in most of our films together we do so much ad lib that it’s entertaining to see how you put it together. Buick 2 is a great example of that. The other reason ties to what I said earlier, about making these films together, and bonding over the experience, making our relationship stronger as friends and as filmmakers.
7. In a utopian world, what would you like to achieve with your work or what would you like it to say about you individually?
Obviously we all want to be successful and win Oscars and all that stuff. I don’t think any actual filmmaker or actor that actually wins goes into that project aiming for that type of recognition. They do it for the same reasons I do – to have fun and challenge themselves. If you win something –great, if not - then whatever. That’s not what matters. What I want to achieve ultimately is to be able to make the films I want with a decent budget and the freedom to collaborate with whoever I want. I want my movies to appear in the same places as the movies I’ve watched and fell in love with, in hopes that maybe I can inspire someone in the same way I was inspired - plant that seed of inspiration and passion and the idea that no matter what, you can achieve anything. I want people to see my movies and say “That movie was awesome, I had a great time watching it, and it looked like they had fun making it”. Because if things go the way I would ultimately love them to – it will be.