SONGS SHE WROTE ABOUT PEOPLE SHE KNOWS tells the story of Carol, an emotionally repressed woman, who loses friends and alienates people when she begins singing songs she wrote about people she knows. When she unexpectedly inspires her boss, to whom she dedicates the song ASSHOLE DAVE, to attempt to reignite his dream of becoming a rock star, Carol is forced to confront her fear of intimacy and her issues with her mother. As Dave flounders in his quest for rock and roll glory, Carol continues to hone her creative voice, pouring all of her money into her debut LP, SONGS SHE WROTE ABOUT PEOPLE SHE KNOWS.
The film is written and directed by Kris Elgstrand, writer and co-director of 2011’s DOPPLEGÄNGER PAUL (or A Film About How Much I Hate Myself) and stars Arabella Bushnell (DOPPLEGÄNGER PAUL, THE CABIN MOVIE) in a singular and sexy turn as Carol and Brad Dryborough as her enigmatic boss Asshole Dave (DOPPLEGÄNGER PAUL, THE CABIN IN THE WOODS).
A huge hit at the recent Toronto International Film Festival, the film was embraced by audiences and critics alike. “We experienced such wonderful receptions from audiences on the festival circuit – it was incredibly galvanizing to see that audiences really do connect with the underlying story while laughing out loud at Kris’ comedy,” comment producers Amy Belling and Thea Grivakes. “It’s not an exaggeration to say that there is no one else like Kris in film today, and SONGS SHE WROTE is a very sophisticated step forward in his work. It merges his singular narrative style with some compelling references to new wave film making. It is visually dynamic, heart-warming, and hilarious.”
SONGS SHE WROTE ABOUT PEOPLE SHE KNOWS is Kris Elgstrand’s second feature film as writer/director and was his fifth film to debut at the Toronto International Film Festival. Previously, Elgstrand wrote and co-directed the feature film DOPPLEGÄNGER PAUL (or A Film About How Much I Hate Myself), and wrote and directed the short films LOVE SEAT and IN HER EAR. His screenwriting credits include the award-winning MAN FEEL PAIN (2004), GALO de BARCELOS: The Chicken of Portugal (2004), THE CABIN MOVIE (2005), STUPID CHAINSAW TRICKS (2009), AND BIG HEAD (2009). Elgstrand has also released a CD of original music, SONGS OF THE SAD SACK, Volume 1: I’m So Disappointed (2011) and he occasionally hosts Kris Elgstrand’s Social Anxiety Hour, a variety show for anxious times.
SONGS SHE WROTE ABOUT PEOPLE SHE KNOWS is shot by Amy Belling (THE SADDEST BOY IN THE WORLD, HIRSUTE), production design is by Drew Shaffer, costume design by Arabella Bushnell, editing by Alex Barker (DOPPLEGÄNGER PAUL) and the music and production score is by Juno award-winning keyboardist, composer, engineer, and producer Chris Gestrin, who is also arranging and producing an album of the songs from the film.
I spoke with the film's stars Arabella Bushnell and Brad Dryborough during The Toronto International Film Festival about working on the film and the process of writing songs about people they know. Please click on the link below.
The film is currently playing in Vancouver and Calgary and opens in Toronto at the Carlton Cinema on May 1st. The film's soundtrack is available for digital download on iTunes, Amazon, Google Play and at http://kriselgstrand.bandcamp.com and atwww.songsshewrote.com
A limited edition of the soundtrack on coloured vinyl will also be available at screenings and for order at www.songsshewrote.com in May.