Boyd Tinsley Shares Faces In The Mirror
For over twenty years, music fans have known Boyd Tinsley as the always energetic, Grammy winning violin player in the Dave Matthews Band. Now, Tinsley is taking his creative talents from the stage to the film making industry with his new film, Faces in the Mirror. The idea for the film came to Tinsley late one night in 2008, and since then, Tinsley has been hard at work producing, writing and creating. The premise of the movie surrounds a man who has to visit his home town for his estranged father’s funeral. The film follows the main character, Ben as he comes to terms with the emotions that surround his relationship with his father as well as himself.
Although production on the film started just four years ago, Tinsley explained the idea of making a movie has been in his head for quite some time. “I first started thinking about making a film when we shot the video for ‘Crash into Me.’ I thought it was a beautiful video. It was haunting and it had so much emotion and you felt so much from it.” Tinsley was unable to ignore the attraction of making a movie, so he started writing the ideas he had on his iPhone. “It was more of a compulsion, than just an idea. I was committed to it as soon as the inspiration hit. I reached out to Ryan Orr, the lead in the film, and Fenton Williams, lighting director for the Dave Matthews Band who is also the owner of Filament Productions.” Fenton went on to become the executive producer on the film. Once the lead actor and production team was assembled, Tinsley enlisted Aaron Farrington to direct.
The process of creating the film was rather unique. Tinsley’s next step was to take a group of talented musicians, such as Dave Matthews, Stefan Lessard, Shawn Smith, and Maktub into a studio to develop a collection of songs for the film. Once the soundtrack was completed, it was up to Farrington to film the movie around the music. Unlike many Hollywood produced movies, there was no working script.
Tinsley explains, “I think people thought I was crazy for the way I made this film, starting with the music and not having a finished script by the time we started filming. This was all on purpose. I wanted this film to unfold and be free to go where it was leading us. Even though, we finished it and made an amazing film, I think some people still think I am crazy. You have got to be a little crazy to create something truly special and unique.”
Boyd describes the process as one of the most creative experiences of his career. “This film is more about emotion than dialogue or plot. There is dialogue, although not a lot. There is a plot, but in many ways it is open to interpretation. I believe words can get in the way of the flow of a film. Words do not always speak the truth. But, dialogue is important where needed. I wanted my actors to not act ; I wanted them to become the character that they played.”
But, with any idea as unconventional as this one, the production of Faces in the Mirror did “face” some trials. “Well, the first challenge was this was the first film we made, so we were not versed in traditional filmmaking, this is one of the reasons the film became a great piece of art. We made it the way I had envisioned, meaning that the end result was to have a film that could be felt emotionally, from the heart,” said Tinsley. One of Tinsley’s fears going into production was if the audience would be able to capture the raw emotion he had envisioned for each scene. “There were moments throughout the process that I didn’t know how we were going to tackle a particularly daunting aspect of the film, but, when we got to that point we always figured it out, and in a way the far exceeded our wildest dreams.”
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