It’s his wedding day, and Dave is not absolutely sure he wants to go through with it. To figure it out, he asks for external input on the problem at hand. Which decision will he (or his future bride) make after getting way too many people involved? In her short comedic film, Made Public, Foster Wilson pokes fun at our newly found desire for approval and self-provoked loss of privacy on social media. With a sharp screenplay, compelling performances and cinematography that’s an integral part of the storytelling, the film is not only funny and entertaining it also prompts a little self-reflection.
The inspiration for the film dates back to 2004, the launch of Facebook and one of its very first features – the “relationship status”. Since then, social media has evolved and we are at a point where most of our lives are documented online and we often turn to our network of “friends” for a little help with decision making.
Made Public is a clever take on the exploration of the perils of making personal decisions and our need to share intimate details in a world dominated by a certain set of six reactions. Having worked as a wedding photographer, the core idea of the film appeared quite easily to Wilson and along with writer/editor Brian Leahy, they set out to explore the willingness of people to share their everyday life with the general public.
An immediate response to the premise of Made Public, might be to write it off as ridiculous and unreal, but in a near future, it might seem more plausible (feels like a reality TV show in the making!). Leahy, who is Wilson’s creative partner, penned a screenplay that hits where it needs to. The situation he created in itself is funny, even if it seems a little too big to be true. The characters and their dialogue sell the reality he has created and with one-line zingers for some characters and more complex dialogue for the two main characters, the film is not short on jokes.
Leahy also did a remarkable job in the editing room, delivering the right rhythm in comedy is paramount and he ensures the film moves along at an entertaining pace. Restricted by a limited budget in her previous projects, Wilson aimed for something more ambitious with this one, including two impressive one-shots. Capturing the scenes this way increased the authentic feel of the piece, making the audience feel like we are right there with the characters as the tension rises.
The film relies heavily on its two lead performances, Jeanine Mason (Roswell: New Mexico, Grey’s Anatomy) and Josh Zuckerman (Desperate Housewives), who have already played an on-screen couple in different projects. Zuckerman’s portrayal of the indecisive groom is extremely compelling, while Mason’s mix of annoyance and anger comes off as natural. The chemistry between the pair does shine though, which makes it easy to root for the couple and appreciate the light-heartedness of the comedy.
Foster Wilson has already directed a couple of other short films, including Waffles ,which also features Mason, and is currently working on several new projects including a short film called 5 Stages of Grief and a feature titled Living Will.