Michelle Kim
Actor, Director, Writer, Producer
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Spring lifts me out of winter

April 20, 2013   

Last week, we got amazing news via email: it read:

Lost Lagoon wins the Tonya Lee Williams Award for Outstanding Canadian Feature at ReelWorld Film Festival 2013 during its Brunch With Brilliance Awards held at Famous Players Canada Square Cinemas in Toronto. The award was presented by TD Bank Group.  Lost Lagoon is directed by Rob Leickner and produced by Rob Leickner and Michelle Kim.

Juror comments included:

The film is “a fresh and contemporary exploration of the Canadian immigrant experience in Vancouver, this poignant film juxtaposed the beauty and isolation of the West Coast with an authentic story of finding and maintaining individualism in a new world. Leickner’s strong direction, script and scene composition was coupled with an evocative Indy soundtrack, outstanding lead performance from Diana Bang and complex supporting characters resulting in humorous yet subtly dangerous tone.”

Great news and new beginnings always seem to come this time of year, at the exact moment the cherry blossom trees start to open up in Queen Elizabeth Park, just a few blocks away from my house. And in chorus with the pink and white blossoms, my life and heart opens up as well, and everything sings. New possibilites, new love. This year, we captured this seasonal pattern in my film THE TREE INSIDE. Here is a still:

What does spring mean to you?

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Filming in the snow

February 11, 2013   

The biggest lesson I’ve learned from my most recent film project: how much the natural world gives to art.

A few weeks ago, Rob, Casey, and I went up to Seymour Mountain to shoot the winter portion of my film. Because our location was so deep in the forest, and there had been a recent downfall of fresh snow, we had to snowshoe to set. Casey led the way, I followed, and Rob, was behind me. I think they subconsciously bookended me to protect me from the snowy terrain; sometimes, there is nothing more heartfelt than shooting with two of your closest friends.

When we got to our intended location, there was a group of under-supervised rambunctious teenage boys throwing snowballs, and their lunches, at each other. Casey, a natural woodsman, disappeared and came back, and said, I think I found a better spot. That’s what I love about Casey, he’s never just an actor, but also locations, grip, AD, and ninja, all in one. He led us off the beaten track–uphill, then downhill–until the perfect setting was revealed: the spitting image of what I had always pictured in my head and my dreams.

Rob truly captured the poetry of the scene so beautifully with his framing and abnormally-talented eye; I love Rob and his work. There was a soft fog sitting on the mountains, which added a mystical feel to the shoot, and the white snow acted as a large bounce, reflecting light up onto our faces. Who needs a lot of equipment when the natural worlds gives so much? More reason for artists to fiercely defend and protect it.


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