The Lost Tree Q&A
The Lost Tree
Q & A with Director and Writer BRIAN A. METCALF
What was your inspiration for the film?
My inspiration for the film was based on a metaphor for being alone and isolated without having anyone to turn to. This film has a person who has lost practically everything forced to go face his own fears.
What was the process of getting the film made?
About 4 years ago, Thomas Nicholas and I got together and discussed working on a project together. He and I already had a working relationship in the past so we were comfortable working with one another. We discussed doing a dramatic thriller together.
Thom came on board to produce as well as star in this film. Then we brought in Ben Chan as a producer as well. Ben and I had a great working relationship together, and we knew he would make a great member of the team. Together, the three of us set out to produce the film. When funding came in, we began pre-production immediately.
How long was the shoot? Where did you shoot?
The shoot took place for about 3 weeks. We shot in various locations in Los Angeles and also near Palmdale and Lancaster.
What is your favorite scene of the film?
Although I have many favorite scenes, one of my favorites is when Noah first walks into the cabin because he is discovering the presence of the place in the same way we as the audience are.
Describe how location played such an important role in the film.
We filmed the cabin and woods scenes in various locations near Lancaster and Palmdale. The cabin is such an important part of the process because it acts like one of the cast itself. It has a complete presence to it. In addition, we needed a large tree that would stand out for the film and found one that was isolated from the rest of the trees. We needed the audience to believe that the tree had been around for many years. Another amazing location that we found was the dry lake bed that leads up to the tree. Visually, it was very striking to see.
For all the city locations, we filmed those in all around Los Angeles. I wanted to show a strong visual contrast between Noah’s cabin life and his life in the city.
What was the most difficult scene of the film to shoot?
There were a number of difficult scenes that we shot as we were constantly fighting against the clock to get as much footage as possible. Some of the more difficult scenes for both the crew and the actors were the action ones because we had to do a number of takes that involved long running sequences. Since I acted as one of the cinematographers as well, I also had to run while holding camera equipment for a number of those takes all while trying making sure I got exactly what I wanted from the shot. Other difficult scenes involved getting the emotional scenes down correctly.
As the film’s writer, what ultimately is the film about?
The film is ultimately about loneliness, regret and fear.