Filmmaker Gareth Edwards, who hails from the UK and now calls Los Angeles home, didn't think he would ever come a successful film director less alone the helmer behind the big ticket film "Godzilla," opening May 9th.
"I've wanted to be a filmmaker since I was six," confesses the affable Edwards, "There weren't film schools in my hometown so I read the story of how Steven Spielberg began, dong short films, screening them then working as a television director and finally he becomes a Hollywood director so that was the path I imagined. It didn't happen that way."
Gareth spent over ten years toiling in odd jobs and crafting short films that he happily admits weren't cinematic masterpieces.
Then along came personal computers and access to animation software and he again, turned to books and immersed himself into learning this new craft.
"I knew that computers were the future," confesses Gareth."What and how I would become a director wasn't crystal clear but I knew I was getting closer. I want into debt buying the computer and learning the software but my passion and curiosity won out."
Driven and visually motivated to share stories, the filmmaker worked tirelessly on a
BBC documentary "Hiroshima" which earned him a BAFTA award. All this from his modest LA apartment.
"I knew the learning animation was going to change filmmaking,” states Gareth. “To that end I taught myself by trial and error. My work caught on and I decided to enter a sc-fi filmmaking contest and that changed my career path exponentially."
Inspired by his growing knowledge of sfx and trusting his guerrilla roots, the resilient director went on to make the sc-fi thriller "Monsters," about an alien attack as witnessed by a snarky American journalist, with a minimal crew, serving as director/cinematographer/and visual effects supervisor.
"I did what needed to be done," slyly confides Gareth. "Monsters' earned rewards in unexpected places and when the calls from Hollywood started coming in, well, at first I didn't take much stock in that either."
Gareth continues his astute observation on getting a foot inside films' inner circle.
"Understand that every young director gets those type of LA calls. It's like a revolving door with the seat your taking usually still warm by the recently exited, excited and hopeful filmmaker."
Then one day "that" career altering call came from Chairman and CEO of Legendary Pictures, Thomas Tull and the new chapter in the Godzilla legend was started.
"The experience was grand and what I leaned was almost immeasurable, " begins Gareth. "This is the man and the company that has generated billions of dollars worldwide for movies like the "Dark Knight" Trilogy and the Zach Snyder's "300'" "Watchmen" and "300: Rise of an Empire" to site just a few. The collaborative environment with all of the key creatives helped me push aside all fear."
The screenplay by Max Borenstein, with story by Davis Callaham, based in the character "Godzilla" which is owned by TOHO CO., LTD, was modeled by many hands but all agreed to keep the integrity of the 1954 masterpiece.
"In the end," summarizes the director, "All of us were genuine fans of Ishiro Honda's landmark film and as fans we wanted to be stimulated and entertained."
"Godzilla" opens May 9th. PG rating. www.godzillamovie.com