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In Conversation With: Gerry Maguire – Two Graves

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At Picture Canning, we work with some of the most exciting production teams in the country. We recently caught up with Gerry Maguire, a long-time collaborator, to find out more about his latest production – Two Graves.

PC: So, what can you tell us about Two Graves?

GM: Two Graves is a dark modern day revenge neo noir film. It deals with the themes of revenge, unspoken secrets and uncomfortable truths. Our protagonist is Margaret Powers, a middle-aged, middle class doctor who seeks revenge when she captures and tortures the young man she believes murdered her son. But she doesn’t foresee the consequences, unearthing a series of deep and troubling truths. Margaret is aided by Zoe, her son’s former lover and recovering addict. Plus there’s Zoe’s former pimp, yet another shady character!

PC: You worked with Dave Johns, off the back of his incredible turn in I, Daniel Blake. How did that come about?

GM: We worked with lots of great talent on this project thanks to our amazing casting director Sam Claypole. Dave Johns was just a pleasure to work with, a truly funny man who loves his work.

PC: Shooting a thriller has got to be fun. Any good stories from on set?

GM: Thrillers are always fun to shoot! We had guns and stunt driving to contend with on this one, and a few fight scenes too.
Good stories… well, let’s just say that everyone was there for each of the main characters’ on-screen deaths, with their ears plugged to protect against the armourer’s live sound effects!

PC: Bet it’s also a lot of hard work though. What was the most challenging scene to shoot?

GM: Our location is Sunderland gave us tons of freedom to choose how we shot and lit the expansive set, which was vital for a shoot light this. Particularly challenging (yet rewarding) was lighting our custom-built torture chamber set with gigantic silks and backlights. We also utilised the gantry cranes in-situ to hang some similar size lights overhead during key scenes.

PC: What camera set up did you use? Any particular reason why?

GM: We chose Picture Canning’s Alexa package to provide the crisp 4k images we wanted for the feature, and a set of prime lenses, which could serve the dynamic, frantic look chosen by our DoP Adam Barnett.

PC: As a line producer you’re responsible for everything. What do you look for when you’re sourcing kit?

GM: It’s always important to know that the kit we’re hiring is in tip top condition, and that support is just around the corner should anything unexpected happen. I always know we’re in safe hands with gear from Picture Canning!

Two Graves was filmed in April of this year and was shot on an Arri Alexa Mini with Zeiss Ultra Primes accompanied by the Preston wireless follow focus and with some great local crew. If you’re planning a shoot and would like to discuss your equipment needs, please get in touch.