An alien from Skyloania is fearful of using his superpowers to help the world. Therefore, a superhero seeks to take him down because of his irresponsibility. This is the story of the new film of Eje Izokun. It was our pleasure to interview him for LA Indies Magazine.
What was the inspiration behind the making of your film?
I have always had a passion for superheroes. Growing up I enjoyed watching superhero movies, playing the video games, playing with the toys and dressing up as Spider-Man for Halloween. Combining my passion for the superhero genre, storytelling and filmmaking, I was inspired to create my own superhero character and my own superhero film series. After making a variety of short films on my YouTube channel (https://www.youtube.com/c/EzokuStudios), I started developing Skyboy. With my limited equipment, resources and special effects, I worked hard to produce my own superhero content. I was also inspired by Sam Raimi’s trilogy of Spider-Man; which is one of my favourite movie franchises.
When did you realize that you wanted to make films?
I realized I wanted to make films at the age of thirteen. I had just graduated from elementary school and was deciding between making films and making video games. After watching Michael Bay’s Pain & Gain, I was greatly inspired to make my own feature film. The story, characters, humour and action sequences in the film are what excited me and grew my desire and vision to produce my own films. The desire for filmmaking grew more and more as I began scriptwriting, studying film and the industry. I also conducted research in various avenues such as YouTube, following interviews and the work of film producers like George Lucas, Steven Spielberg, Kevin Feige, Christopher Nolan and Sam Raimi. In my pursuit of career excellence, I found that filmmaking gives you a great amount of creative freedom. My late father encouraged my passion for filmmaking. He continually encouraged me to keep on writing and improving my scripts over the years and registered me for camera/video training. I also attended the New York Film Academy, Los Angeles, California last summer 2019 to get more insight into filmmaking.
What genre of filmmaking fascinates you and why?
The superhero genre of filmmaking fascinates me because of the character development, their backstories, powers, the action sequences, the moral themes, and the overall grandeur. I am drawn to the ability to promote continuity in the life cycles of the characters and their stories. Also, the impacts of the storylines (heroes and villains alike) on individuals, countries, the world and the universe!
How did you find the cast and the crew of Skyboy?
I’m very grateful for the cast and crew of Skyboy. They were all very supportive and professional. The cast and crew consisted of myself, my older brothers and my good friends. Brandon and Liam worked on the cinematography. Brandon has great experience with photography, so I collaborated with him on the visuals for the film. Tito worked on the boom (sound recording) and worked on the film editing with me. My oldest brother Ehi played the part of “Azure” the antagonist, my friend Mudia played the part of the other villain “Trent the Thief”, and my other brother Isi and friend Liam played short cameo roles to make the film feel realistic.
What is the most challenging thing about making an indie short film?
Apart from the obvious restrictions due to the covid-19 pandemic, strictly following my shooting schedule was the most challenging thing while making Skyboy. There is so much to do during filming and production, and it was difficult to shoot every scene and coordinate every aspect of production on time with limited resources. Duties such as assembling the cast and crew on time, setting up and break-down of the equipment, rehearsals, costume changes etc. All this had to be done while adhering to social distancing and gathering restrictions.
Which directors have been influential in your work?
Sam Raimi, Christopher Nolan, Anthony Russo and Joe Russo have been influential in my work. They are the filmmakers of my favourite films which include the Spider-Man trilogy, the Dark Knight Trilogy, Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame. The stories and excitement of those films greatly influenced my work on Skyboy.
What is your next film project?
My next film project is a short film about a boy who uses his teleportation powers to travel to different parts of Los Angeles. He interacts with the citizens of the city and while he… I guess you will have to wait for my film to be fully immersed in the story and experience! Last year while I was in Los Angeles, I filmed some footage while I toured around the city to make this creative short film.