This week we had the chance to ask Michael Sundberg some questions about his short film Jacob’s Recall, and his thoughts on the filmmaking process and short film industry in general. Here’s what they had to tell us…

Interviewer: What inspired you to make this film?

Michael Sundberg: In 2018 I was writing a screenplay for a feature film titled “La Stanza.” During that time, I found that I needed to learn more about personality types and traits. While studying these, I read about different types of mental issues and illness. The conditions of sociopathy and narcissism seemed fascinating and a bit mysterious. I wanted to explore a story and characters affected by these destructive psychological forces, and how they might be dealt with.

Interviewer: From the lessons you have learned through your experience, what advice would you like to give to aspiring filmmakers?

Michael Sundberg: Spend as much time as you can in fine-tuning your screenplay. It needs to deliver your film’s theme in the most direct and powerful way. Have your screenplay reviewed by experienced writers and make it as short and direct as possible. Always push for more action, less dialog! 

Interviewer: Jacob’s Recall explores the idea of mental health, suicide, and salvation in a very unique way, what made you create a story around these issues, and why did you choose to set it in the time period you did?

Michael Sundberg: I considered how isolation and self-centered behaviors could lead to thoughts of suicide. I also considered how family relations can be a major factor. I watched hours of interviews and documentaries of prisoners with life sentences and death sentences. The Ted Bundy interviews were a significant influence on the story, including the time period of the 1960’s. In the end, I wanted to address how family and friends can help save despondent people by simply reaching out and staying connected and engaged. 

Interviewer: Why do you think Short films are important?

Michael Sundberg: Short films can deliver deep and meaningful messages, in compact formats, that rival the importance of feature films. They also provide opportunities for more filmmakers to deliver their messages with much smaller budgets.

Interviewer: Where do you see the film industry going in the next 3-5 years?

Michael Sundberg: I see growing opportunities for independent filmmakers producing short films and low budget features, as the studios focus on big budget films. We’ve drifted away from smaller budget films in the commercial distribution platforms, yet I think the huge popularity of film festivals shows there is a demand for this art form. It will re-emerge in a big way!

Watch Full Short Film Here: