Five Questions With Filmmaker Jarrod Flood

Jarrod Flood’s film, Through the Dust, is playing at the 2015 GI Film Festival.

Where are you from and what is your film background?

I was born in Massachusetts, however I’ve lived in many places that I’ve called home. It was an unforeseen blessing at times but now looking back I can see how each place greatly influenced my life. I currently live in Cedar Springs, Michigan a small town outside of Grand Rapids.

My film background is certainly more clear in hindsight. I grew up in the outdoors and one thing I loved as a child was Saturday morning outdoor television. It was that burning desire to be outdoors as an adult that called me and I picked up my first camera in hopes to pursue a career in the outdoor film industry. From there the calling burned deeper ultimately leading me to film school where I not only starting honing my skills but learned that this is my calling and who knew I had an eye for it.

Who are your biggest influences in film and why?

I’ve been blessed to have had many great teachers but one teacher in film school, Phil Worfel, I would say has been the most influential. His classes always engaged me causing a great turbulence of thought and soul searching. It was from him, that I experienced the most inner growth as a filmmaker. It was in his classes where I found my voice and for that I will always be truly grateful. I would also have to say Vimeo has been a big influential factor for me. I don’t really have specific filmmakers that I look to for inspiration, though I admire many, it has been more of a collective of unknowns and knowns.

What was the hardest part about getting this film made?

The hardest part was the script. I wrote the original story and the first draft then worked together with screenwriter Andrew Furstenberg through 20 or so drafts, until principle photography. It was tough bringing back those emotions that I had suppressed. It was not only difficult emotionally but trying to convey those emotions into words proved to be a challenge.

Many times I wasn’t able to clearly relay specific words so Andrew had to process emotions and experiences he hadn’t felt or gone through before. We worked endlessly to get it right. The truth that the hardest things we go through are usually the most gratifying held true not only for the film but the healing that I experienced through the process.

What do you want viewers to take away with them after watching your film?

One of the things I love about film is that it gives you the opportunity to put a piece of yourself, your soul, your experiences into a visual medium in hopes that people will connect with it. With this film I had two major goals I wanted to accomplish. One was to bring understanding to those that haven’t gone through PTS and the other was to sow the seeds of healing and hope to those of us who have.

What is a fun fact about you that would surprise people?

A fun fact that people are usually surprised by is that I was a taxidermist. I guess I still am just not open for business…

Through the Dust, directed by Jarrod Flood, is playing at Angelika on May 24, 2015. Click here for tickets.