THE BOOK OF BIRDIE heads to Berlin! FINAL GIRLS OPENING NIGHT

26 Jan 2018

Final Girls Berlin Film Festival showcases horror cinema that’s directed, written, or produced by women*. After the thrilling and chilling first two editions in February and June 2017, they are holding the third installment of FGBFF from February 1-3, 2018 at B-ware Ladenkino in Berlin. Final Girls BFF are committed to creating space for female voices and visions, whether monstrous, heroic, or some messy combination of the two, in the horror genre.  Featuring women focused workshops and panels too! 
We are thrilled to announce that THE BOOK OF BIRDIE is the Opening Night film of the festival, and director Elizabeth E. Schuch will be giving a workshop on storyboarding during the festival.

SCREENING
THE BOOK OF BIRDIE
1 FEB 2018 8:30 PM 
b-ware! Ladenkino
19 Gärtnerstraße
Berlin, Berlin 10245
Germany


WORKSHOP
STORYBOARDING
3 FEB 2018 2.30 PM

REVIEWS: THE VERGE - 'glitter, gold, and open wounds'

23 Nov 2017


The Book of Birdie imagines religious horror with glitter, gold, and open wounds

Elizabeth Schuch’s fantastic directorial debut comes on the heels of her work in Wonder Woman’s art department


This fall, The Verge is making a choice. The choice is fear! We’ve decided to embrace the season by taking in as many new horror movies as possible and reporting back on which ones are worth your time. We’re calling this series Hold My Hand, as we look at films you might want to watch with a supportive viewing partner. Get comfortable, put the kettle on, check the closet for ghosts, then find a hand to squeeze until the bones pop.
Culturally, we don’t think enough about morbid girls. There aren’t very many of them in our movies, beyond the silent, violent ones Emily Yoshida described for Vulture earlier this year, writing about LoganStranger Things, and Game of Thrones: “Their age and increasing silence has become a handy crutch for writers who might otherwise have a harder time bringing female leads to life.” Young women in movies tend to be just as confused as young men are, but with way less room to be super weird about it.
This fall has produced two standout entries into the tiny genre of morbid female coming-of-age films so far, a happy coincidence after the year kicked off with Julia Ducournau’s “teen girl cannibal movie” Raw. The first was Anita Rocha da Silveira’s debut Kill Me Please(actually released in Brazil in 2015, but just now making its way to the US), which followed a group of teenage girls as their ringleader nursed an obsession with a local serial killer’s beautiful young victims. The second is The Book of Birdie, another film from a first-time feature director. 
WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD 

"It’s also girly coming-of-age at its morbid best, and the perfect piece of melancholy for a dark fall afternoon."

FESTIVALS: UNDERWIRE FILM FESTIVAL LONDON SCREENING








"Underwire is the UK’s only film festival celebrating female filmmaking talent across the crafts. It was founded in 2010 by Gabriella Apicella and Gemma Mitchell to address gender imbalance in film and change the industry from the inside out. The festival has awarded training and mentoring opportunities to over 50 filmmakers, and has screened over 300 films."


THE BOOK OF BIRDIE UK PREMIERE
Fresh from the Sitges Film Festival, the first feature by designer-turned-director Elizabeth E. Schuch, The Book of Birdie is a haunting and lyrical portrait of an imaginative teenager (the titular Birdie, played by newcomer Ilirida Memedovski). Placed in an crumbling convent by her grandmother for her own protection, Birdie begins to experience unusual hallucinations that will spur the imaginative teen onto a spiritual mission. Is she being called to sainthood or are these visions a sign of something darker within her?

The screening will be followed by a Q&A with co-writer/director Elizabeth E. Schuch, costume designer/co-writer Anami Tara Shucart and cinematographer/VFX producer Konstantinos Koutsoliotas.

Running time: 91min
Director: Elizabeth E. Schuch
Screenwriters: Anami Tara Shucart and Elizabeth E. Schuch
Producers: Iakovos Vroutsis and Konstantinos Koutsoliotas

DETAILS

Friday 24 November | 6:45pm
Running time | 91 minutes, followed by a filmmaker Q&A
Venue | Curzon Aldgate, Goodman’s Fields, 2 Canter Way, London E1 8PS
Tickets | £12

Buy Here: http://www.underwirefestival.com/events/the-book-of-birdie/

INTERVIEW: Meet Birdie, Q&A with actress ILIRIDA MEMEDOVSKI

15 Oct 2017

ILIRIDA MEMEDOVSKI Photo by Coleton James

Between running around to film festivals and finishing her theatre degree, we sat down with ILIRIDA MEMEDOVSKI to chat about her experience filming THE BOOK OF BIRDIE.

Before filming 'THE BOOK OF BIRDIE' what kind of performance experience did you have?
Before Book of Birdie I’ve only acted on stage, my most recent work has been mainly through Carthage. Acting on stage is so different from film! Stage acting requires a lot of physicality and projection whereas on camera acting is so much more intense and personal. I love both but they both have really different qualities.

Birdie is sweet and a bit odd... would you say she's very different to yourself?
I love the playfulness of Birdie, she comes off kind of serious but she’s actually a total goofball. I think I’m similar, I think people don’t understand how weird I am until they get to know me. But, I think our fascination with blood is our main difference!

Can you tell us a bit about what the shoot was like - working with the crew, under a first-time director?I loved this crew. Every single person on this team was kind, caring, and so talented. Liz, the director, was professional and so obviously passionate. Being a first time film actress I felt comfortable and excited to come to work every morning. Shooting a film is like nothing I’ve ever experienced as a theatre student. The hardest part was the cold! The crew did an amazing job of keeping us comfortable but nothing can beat a Wisconsin winter. The most fun was our “dream sequence shoot”, it was so fun getting to dance around and be goofy.

Did you have any inspiration sources for the character?

Audrey Tautou’s 'Amelie' will forever be my inspiration for every character, I think she is my universal inspiration. I really think she applied well to 'Birdie' too, the emotional cut off at an early age, the childish need for affection, etc. On set we also discovered that I highly resembled Saint Philomena, that came as a huge inspiration as well. Her story and her image really drove a lot of Birdie too. Liz may not know this but I also used her mannerisms as inspiration sometimes, I think that she put a lot of her heart and soul into writing Birdie.
ILIRIDA MEMEDOVSKI Photo by Coleton James

THE BOOK OF BIRDIE is an all female film. Was that important to you?
This is so important to me. As progressive as the artistic world is I feel like we still have a long way to go in regards to women’s empowerment/representation. We need more female writers, designers, and directors to be represented in the community. I am honored to have taken part in this film.

'Birdie' falls in love in the film. What was that like for you?

Once again, as progressive as the artistic world is I feel like we still have a long way to go in regards to women’s empowerment/representation, especially in regards to LGBTQA+ women. I myself have always seen sexuality as a fluid thing. I don’t really limit myself with love based on a person’s gender. Kitty was a fantastic love interest and I feel as though our views on sexuality are really similar! Sexuality in film, especially women and sexuality, needs to be talked about and represented!

There's some darker religious subject matter in the film, how did that affect you personally?
I’ve never really been a religious person. During this film I definitely learned a whole lot about Christianity. I have a lot of respect for every religion, and although this film has darker themes I think it’s still respectful.

What's your family background like?
I’m a first generation American/daughter to two incredibly hard working Albanian-immigrant parents.

What is your dream for the future?
My dream is to continue doing what I love. I want to act in film and in theatre as much as possible. I love the art community and I want to be an influence to it. My ultimate super crazy dream however is to be on a long running TV show. I want to be on something like Friends or Gilmore Girls, I want to have that super strong bond with a cast and crew and do something I love!

Meet the lovely and charming Ilirida in person tonight at 
BROOKLYN HORROR FILM FESTIVAL!
http://brooklynhorrorfest.com/portfolio/the-book-of-birdie/

Photos from the series 'Trials and Tribulations' by Coleton James

SCREENINGS: Tickets now on sale - CLOSING NIGHT FILM at Brooklyn Horror Film Festival

9 Sep 2017

Tickets are now on sale for THE BOOK OF BIRDIE - the Closing Night Film at Brooklyn Horror Film Festival.

The Brooklyn Horror Film Festival (BHFF) is a competitive international film festival showing nothing short of the best in badass genre film. In addition to the screenings, we have parties, Q&A’s with filmmakers, panels, events, food & drinks and more. The directors of BHFF are committed to celebrating the art of horror filmmaking and are focused on pushing horror’s boundaries to challenge the genre’s preconceptions.

CLOSING NIGHT FILM
NORTH AMERICAN PREMIERE

Venue:  Wythe Hotel Cinema
Time:  8:00PM
Date:  Sunday, October 15
BOOK TICKETS HEREhttp://brooklynhorrorfest.com/portfolio/the-book-of-birdie/

ABOUT THE FILM
Introverted teenager Birdie (radiant newcomer Ilirida Memedovski) is forced to live inside a quaint, Lake-Michigan-situated convent by her concerned grandmother. Grandma’s hope is that the strict nuns will change the teen’s outlook on life. It doesn’t take long, though, for Birdie’s obsession with blood, via her inquisitive reactions to such bloody noses and her own menstruation, to rock not only her own world but those of the convent’s inhabitants, including the groundskeeper’s young daughter, with whom Birdie sparks a romance.
A storyboard artist for big Hollywood films like this year’s WONDER WOMAN, UK-based writer-director Elizabeth E. Schuch brings her visual flair to this beautifully shot and colorfully hypnotic debut. Schuch’s decision to cast only women wasn’t by accident—THE BOOK OF BIRDIE applies Gothic horror and Shirley-Jackson-like fantasy to a quietly unnerving story seeped in feminism. —Matt Barone