Losing Control is a short film about a boy who describes the feelings of his mental illness and depression. He takes the audience on a journey through his mind. The joruney of pain, suffering and hope collide together.
Nicole Koutsoumbas is the director of Losing Control. Nicole is a filmmaker, a photographer and a YouTube artist who makes a variety of videos from comedy to visual films. Nicole likes to make people think about various human conditions in society.
We spoke to Nicole regarding her latest project.
What was the inspiration behind the making of "Losing Control"?
The inspiration behind the making of this film was to spread awareness of mental health. It is a real-world issue that seems to be swept under the rug. This causes victims of the illness to feel more and more alone. It is not talked about because it makes people feel "uncomfortable." Victims, like me, feel censored when we do talk about it. I wanted to make this film for the people like me out there. To help them feel less alone. And for the people that may not be educated about mental health.
What were some of the challenges of making the film?
One of the big challenges making this film was that the star of the film has never experienced depression, anxiety, or anything like that. He asked some of his friends that go through it some questions about how they feel when they go through an anxiety attack. He asked me what it feels like to feel hopeless. Like there's nothing else to live for. It was a challenge to go through the production of this film because the star portrayed what I felt and wrote in the script so well. It almost brought me to tears.
When did you realize that you wanted to work in media and what was the first film project that you created
I realized I wanted to work in media when I started seeing influencers on YouTube. They could create anything they wanted. They could create art that was for their specific audience and make a living off it. That sort of freedom made me want to tell my message and say what I wanted to say online. Since I have been doing that, it has helped a lot of people. The first big project I have ever worked on was my short film called "The Signs." It now has over one million views on YouTube. It is another mental health awareness short film, but I wasn't expecting it to get the attention it has been getting because it was just a student film I had created in high school. However, I am really proud of the film because it helped so many people and has saved lives.
Which directors have been influential in your work and why?
YouTubers like Ben Brown, Casey Neistat, Sam Kolder, and many more have been very influential in my work and career because they create videos that have a positive influence on people. That's all I want to do in my career. I always say, "if one of my films has made someone smile or helped them through a bad day, then I have done my job." I just want to help people through my art.
What genre of filmmaking do you like to work on?
I really love working on short films that spread awareness about real-world issues. If my films ever open someone's mindset about a certain topic, that's the best thing I could do in my life, in my opinion. It could help them in the long run.
What is the most challenging aspect of making an independent film?
The most challenging aspect of making an independent film is getting that film out there and known. I want people to know my name and who I am one day. I've been working at my career for 5 years now, almost 6, and I still haven't gotten noticed. I've worked with amazing people during the process, but sometimes it feels like people don't support me and my art. I just want to get my name out there because I know my message can help a lot of people out there.
How can cinema and films change the world and have an impact on society?
Cinema and films can change the world and have an impact on society by telling a story. That story may relate to someone. That relation can cause someone to think a different way. I want my films to have that effect and I hope they do. I want my films to have a positive influence on people in today's society.