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Behind the Wall

In this magical realism tale, an injured young dancer flees her old life and moves into a strange dilapidated apartment - an apartment with a view into a world that moves to its own distinct rhythm.

  • Bat-Sheva Guez
    A Day in Milan, Morning, 3F, Whorl, As Light As Air, New York Underwater and more
  • Bat-Sheva Guez
    A Day in Milan, Morning, 3F, Whorl, As Light As Air, New York Underwater and more
  • Bat-Sheva Guez
  • Gina Bouchard
  • Alexandra Turshen
    Key Cast
    Red Oak, Boy Meets Girl, Body
  • Karen Lynn Gorney
    Key Cast
    Saturday Night Fever, All My Children
  • Lou Patane
    Key Cast
  • Giacomo Belletti
    Director of Photography
  • Krista Racho-Jansen
  • Mark Orton
    Nebraska, The Good Girl, Everything is Illuminated
  • Project Type:
  • Genres:
    drama, comedy, magical realism
  • Runtime:
    16 minutes 35 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    August 1, 2015
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
  • Rhode Island International Film Festival
    Providence, RI
    August 8, 2015
    World Premiere
    Grand Prize: Best Cinematography and Panavision Grant
  • Hamptons International Film Festival
    October 11, 2015
  • Vassar Film Festival (Washington DC)
    Washington, DC
    October 17, 2015
  • Sanctuary International Film Festival
    Gold Coast, Australia
    November 4, 2015
  • Art of Brooklyn Film Festival
    Brooklyn, NY
    United States
    June 10, 2016
    Brooklyn Premiere
    Best Director
  • Lighthouse Film Festival
    Long Beach Island, NJ
    United States
    June 11, 2016
    New Jersey Premiere
  • The Loft Cinema: Film Fatales Shorts Screening
    Tucson, Arizona
    United States
    April 20, 2016
  • Hollyshorts Film Festival
    Los Angeles
    United States
    August 13, 2016
  • Seattle Shorts Film Festival
    United States
    November 11, 2016
    Seattle Premiere
  • Citizen Jane Film Festival
    United States
    November 5, 2016
  • Atlanta Underground Film Festival
    United States
    August 20, 2016
  • Moondance Film Festival
    Boulder, CO
    United States
  • UCLA Melnitz Movies - Film Fatales Screening
    Los Angeles, CA
    United States
  • Triskelion Dance Film Festival
    Brooklyn, NY
    United States
    July 14, 2016
  • International Fine Arts Film Festival
    Santa Barbara, CA
    July 15, 2016
Director Biography - Bat-Sheva Guez

Bat-Sheva Guez (writer/director)
pushes the boundaries of visual storytelling, weaving dance, magic, and experimental techniques into character-driven stories with lovely production design. She is the recipient of the JT3 Artist Award for Screenwriting & Directing and has written and directed more than a dozen short films, many of which have screened in festivals worldwide. Her most recent film, Behind the Wall, won the Grand Prize for Best Cinematography at the Rhode Island International Film Festival. Her past work has screened at multiple fests including the Constellation Change Screen Dance Festival, the Sans Souci Festival, The New York Television Festival, and the Atlanta Underground Film Festival.

With her production company, Adventure Pants, she has directed over 20 videos for Lincoln Center, promoting artists and performers including New York City Ballet, Paul Taylor Dance Company, and American Ballet Theatre to name a few. She's directed a web series featuring New York's underground performing arts scene and has also created dance films for Steeledance and Renagade Performance Group. She is a member of Film Fatales. www.batshevaguez.com www.adventurepants.tv

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Director Statement

I am a writer/director who revels in discovery and creative exploration. My films toy with traditional narratives and push the boundaries of visual storytelling. I have been known to build special 3-D projection screens for my work, convert a theater into a giant, underbed world, choreograph dancers to partner with split-screen duplicates of themselves, and film animated photographs. I strive to experiment within the medium of cinema, and then, more importantly, apply these experimental techniques to stories that are emotionally accessible, that can be respected for their adroit writing and complex characters.

For Behind the Wall I wanted to juxtapose two worlds: one cold, lonely, and young and one warm, old and cluttered with all the accumulation of history. I also wanted to spend time focusing on older characters and their personal struggles with gentrification as they are forced out of neighborhoods they’ve called home for generations. This theme runs strong in my feature as well (And How She Tried).

I also love the seeing older dancers in an art form that is commonly known for youth and strength. There is so much potential there to inspire and invigorate our viewers.

In Behind the Wall, I created a film that was sound-driven. The dance is powered by the diegetic sounds of the space, and so the music for the dances must also emerge from the rhythmic banging of the steam hammer in the pipes, the creaking of the floor, the percussion of the dancers’ bodies, and any words or sounds that they make. Katrin’s final dance begins without music. Instead, we hear, in detail, the sounds she makes as she breathes, as she slides, as she steps forward with her heavy cast.

I am passionate about dance filmmaking, and have directed several short dance films. I have also directed videos capturing the dances of Paul Taylor Dance Company, New York City Ballet, American Ballet Theatre and more. I care deeply about liberating dance from the confines of the theater and re-imagining it in the world, setting it in a location that adds depth and subtext to the story told through the dance.

The challenge to tell a story where a character doesn’t speak has always inspired me, and this is the second short script that I have written with a silent protagonist. In Behind the Wall, the protagonist does not speak. I have been influenced by films such as The Triplets of Bellville or The Illusionist, which use minimal dialogue and yet convey so much information through visual storytelling alone. The challenge for this project is to tell Katrin’s story without her dialogue, and still maintain her character arc.