Interview: Keeran Anwar Blessie on BAFTA Longlisted LGBTQ+ Short ‘A Fox in the Night’
A Fox in the Night is director Keeran Anwar Blessie’s directorial debut. The beautiful story is set in south London and shares an unlikely meeting of two young black men.
This phenomenal short film has been longlisted for a BAFTA. We caught up with Keeran to talk about the film, inspiration and London’s best bits.
Tell us about A Fox in the Night. What should we expect and how can we watch the film?
The film is a meet-cute story about two people from opposite ends of the spectrum that meet in a chance encounter. The story is about the unexpected joy from surprise moments shared with a stranger that leaves you walking away forever changed.
The film is currently available to watch on All 4 for free, so definitely have a gander.
Who inspires you to make work like this?
The story and much of my work are inspired by what I observe in the world around me – my friends, my family and my own experiences.
This film was inspired by a friend who had found a ying to their yang. I was fascinated by the relationship. Through exploring the story I realised that this story has never been told, these characters have never had this moment on screen before.
Which films have you loved in the last year and are there any you are looking forward to seeing in 2023?
Gosh, so many films! Two films really stood out for me (this was difficult to answer); The Woman King and Triangle of Sadness.
The Woman King was such a breakthrough moment, something completely new and engaging from the incredible Viola Davis. The entire cast was riveting and the story was something completely unique.
Triangle of Sadness is another film that left me laughing out loud, shouting at the screen and gripping my seat. Ruben Ostlund is a favourite filmmaker of mine. His cutting social commentary and ability to stretch a narrative to its extremes and still keep it human and relatable are masterly.
I am looking forward to seeing Tár and The Whale in 2023!
What advice would you give to people wanting to make a short film?
I think simply lean into your fear. There are makers who are dying to collaborate, and who are eager to tell stories with you. Go out, find them, and make films. Be courageous.
What are your favourite London haunts? (To eat, to get inspired, to relax)
It’s very rare I go to the same restaurant twice in London cause I am so spoiled for choice in the city, but at the moment I would say Casa Fofó, Morito, and not forgetting a seafood boil from Hot ‘n Juicy (get into it!).
I walk and cycle a lot, that is where a lot of new ideas are generated and creative problems solved. I love Hackney Downs for an early morning walk to watch the sunrise or flaneuring through the city at night.
I am Joint Editor at To Do List. I like free, cheap & offbeat London, especially: cabaret, art, theatre, pop-ups, eating out, quirky films, museums, day trips, social enterprise & much more.