Becoming a Self Taught Filmmaker at Age Sixteen
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In 2017, at the age of 16, my debut film "WWII: The Long Road Home" premiered at the Brighton and Edinburgh festivals after spending literally three years in blood and sweat producing the zero budget film (it was me) at the beginning fourteen years old). Little did I know the film would get a major distribution deal three years later, which made me not only the youngest feature film director in the country, but also the youngest in the world to land a feature film on Amazon, Sky and iTunes in most major UK supermarkets.

"WWII: The Long Road Home" tells the true story of my great grandfather's experience as an escaped prisoner of war in Italy during World War II and his quest to survive in hopes of being reunited with his wife and young son in England. Over the three years I've made the film, I've learned more than I could ever imagine about the process of filmmaking and the innate difficulties of turning your idea into a full-fledged feature. The experience I had overseeing every aspect of the production; Scripting, working with actors, composing, production design and editing. By immersing myself fully in the filmmaking process, I developed a strong understanding and understanding of every aspect of the process, allowing me to refine where I've excelled and delegated elsewhere. That's the beauty of independent filmmaking in my opinion. There is no better way to learn about the process of making a movie and gain an accurate appreciation for the medium than just making one.

I am completely self-taught and have never entered a film school. My cinematic training consisted of studying films that I admired and listening to the directors share their experiences through DVD commentary. When I hit the road at age fourteen, I had no entry into the industry and no connections (I was forced to take on the lead as it proved nigh on impossible to find credible actors at such a young age, and As such, I have "I am indebted to those who agreed to help. Constructing an observable film became more than a" simple "task. I also had to prove myself as a credible filmmaker who through my visual storytelling, aroused emotions and a feeling of disbelief in the audience that such a film could be made by such a young director. Judging from the reaction to the film's release, Graham Fuller of Culture Trip described it as "a miracle." "and described me as" the next Spielberg "as well as the new distribution contract for the picture, I can rightly say that it was mi r succeeded.

At the time of this writing, I'm in the middle of shooting my second feature film, "Vindication Swim," the true story of swimmer Mercedes Gleitze, who became the first British woman to swim the English Channel in 1927. On it I have a team of actors from films like "Darkest Hour", "The Favorite" and "Pirates of the Caribbean" with the amazing Kirsten Callaghan as Mercedes (who swims all alone in the movie!). Aside from the on-screen talent, we have a crew that has Emmy wins and a Grammy nomination among them. Even so, the production was by no means child's play. Filming at sea on the English Channel was the greatest challenge for me and everyone involved in our career. But it's through so monumental calls for greatness to be achieved; It is the hard work, the bloodwork and the sweat, the arrogant pain of holding your eyesight on celluloid that makes movies worth watching. The great epics that I am most inspired by; The "Lawrence of Arabia", the "Apocalypse Nows", were all products of hard work that paid off tenfold in the end. For me, this is my biggest lesson for those who want to make a name for themselves in film. Dream big and just do it.


About Elliott Hasler

Elliott Hasler is the UK's youngest film director and the UK’s most exciting emerging film talent. He finished his first feature film "WWII: The Long Road Home" after three years of production at the age of 16. "The Long Road Home" was shown at the Edinburgh and Brighton festivals, where it received critical acclaim and critics as a "miracle". Culture Trip's Graham Fuller cited Hasler as "the next Spielberg". Hasler will follow the success of his debut film with his next project "Vindication Swim", a biopic about Mercedes Gleitze, who in 1927 became the first British woman to swim the English Channel.


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