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An Interview with Robert Howat

Tell us about yourself. What inspired you to become a filmmaker?

I grew up watching old swashbucklers, westerns and Bond movies with my parents so I always loved cinema and always wanted to make films.

Talk about your last work. What are some of the challenges you faced during production?

My recently completed sci fi comedy short film Professor Henry Bowfax’s Fantastic Journey Through Time! Had it’s production challenges due to Covid, namely cast and crew availability, so took longer to complete but perseverance paid off in the end.

What makes you want to tell stories? In other words, what are the themes/issues you want to incorporate into your work?

I just like making entertaining films with engaging visuals, whether it’s an adventure film that I want to thrill and excite an audience or a creepy horror that gets under your skin. They have to be entertaining and engaging.

Please tell us about your vision and your method of approaching a new project?

Get the best cast and crew of a similar mind you can get that everyone can get on with. A happy committed cast and crew will go so much further and you’ll always have a much better end result. I’ve often also found that necessity is the mother of invention.

Who are your filmmaking influencers? What are the films that were influential for you?

George Miller, John Carpenter, Ridley Scott and the early fun adventure movies of Kevin Connor.

George Miller’s Mad Max films have been a huge influence on me, he’s a genius film maker.

John Carpenter’s Halloween, The Fog and Escape From New York are in my top ten favourite films.

How do you think the industry is changing? How has COVID affected independent filmmaking/creation?

The industry is ever changing really but Covid I think has driven people to be creative during lockdowns and restrictions, so their work will reflect this.

What advice would you give to aspiring artists? What are some of the things they must follow/avoid?

Don’t follow trends, make the films you really want to make yourself, it’s more fun that way anyway!

Do you think films/stories can bring about a change in the world?

Yes. Lots of visitors to Scotland where I live have asked me questions about films set in Scotland, films can be a great initiation to history and other cultures.

What do you think people like to watch these days? Has the pandemic changed people's taste?

Probably binge watching entire movie franchises and/or box sets of seasons of TV shows during Covid lockdowns.

Please tell us about your upcoming projects.

I want to continue my time travelling short film series, already in early pre production, working on some authentic costumes and props.


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