Sally Potter


Quick facts:
Born 1949, London
13 wins and 10 nominations
Awarded the OBE
(Officer of the Order of the Britis Empire) 2012
1 European Film Awards
1 Berlin International Film Festival
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writer & composer

What first drew you to film-making?

"First, watching films as a child. Second, putting a camera to my eye when I was about 14. My uncle and his then partner lent me their 8mm movie camera. I realised that, when you frame the world, you see and feel different things."

Sally is an English director, and screenwriter borned and raised in London with her younger brother. Potter started making amateur films already at the age of 14, when given a 8mm camera by her uncle, she early realized that looking at the world through a camera changes the way we see and feel. At the age of 16 she dropped out of school to become a filmmaker.

1968-1970 she worked as a kitchen worker and a picture researcher for BBC to support herself and her work. She made several short films during this period, such as Jerk (1969) and Play (1970), Before she later trained as a dancer and chorepgrapher at the London School of Contemperary Dance. She created both film and dance pieces, before she founded Limited Dance Company with Jackey Lansley. She has also sung in bands and done operas.

After spending years doing choreographing and composing, she went back to filmmaking, with her short film "Thriller" (1979). Which was followed by her first feature film "The Gold Diggers"(1983). After several short films and a documentary series for channel 4, she internationally distributed "Orlando"(1992). as well as some of her big sucesses like "The Man Who Cried"(2000) and "Ginger & Rosa"(2012). 

// 1992 //

// 2000 //

// 2012 //

"Choreography was the perfect 'poor theatre.' All you needed were willing bodies and some space. So it was as a choreographer that I learnt how to direct and it was as a dancer that I learnt how to work."

As to how Sally interested me, it was mainly because of her great effort of brining something into the films other than just making a film to mass produce it. How she really pours her heart and soul into the stories being told, and how she choses to make "quality before quantity." Her passion. 

When it comes to how Sally has inspired my own work, on this project, it is basically by looking for that extra something to put into my work. Make sure that the end product is something that is of good quality. And last but not least, how important that extra spark and passion is for your work, and the planning en prep you put into it. As well as to be encouraged to try out now things and take risks, as to most of her films have been risk-taking. 

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