Award of Merit – “Change The World (Music Video)” (Australia)

Title: Change The World (Music Video)
Runtime: 4 min
Country: Australia 
Director: Angelena Bonet
Placement: Award of Merit
Competition: December, 2019

Synopsis: Angelena Bonet’s documentary short film and protest song “Change The World” was co-written from her heart and soul with her late fiancé, Erick Deeby. He had written and recorded instrumental pieces of music for her between 2005 to 2007 then suddenly and unexpectedly passed away three days after they got engaged in August 2007. Angelena wrote the lyrics and melody to his music after his devastating passing and during her time of deep grief. Ten years later she has created a documentary short film which she produced, directed and edited in its entirety. The title track from her multi-award winning debut documentary feature film ‘Angelena: Change The World’ and documentary short film ‘Change The World’ is a message of peace, love and unity.

FILMMAKER Q&A (Angelena Bonet – Director, Producer, Writer, Editor, Singer, Lyricist):

OR: What was the inspiration for your film?

AB: The inspiration for my film came from my heart and soul and is a message of peace, love and unity. I produced the short film to bring my song “Change The World” to life and paint a clear picture of what I was singing. It was borne from my sadness of the world governments, corporations and religious leaders greed and hypocrisy. I wanted to remind people that their abuse of power and need to control the masses was based in fear and that love is the key to peace and harmony on Earth. The truth is the public has the power to change the world if we stand in solidarity with united voices. My last line encapsulates the essence of my message and that is “together, you and I can change this world today”.

OR: When did you conceive the idea for your film and how long did it take before it was realized?

AB: I conceived the idea many years ago when I was living in the bohemian red light district of Sydney, Kings Cross and it has taken 13 years to see the light of day. Back in 2007 my then boyfriend, Erick Deeby, and I began collaborating on my solo album. He had written and recorded instrumental pieces of music for me over the course of a couple of years, we then got engaged and three days later he suddenly and unexpectedly suffered a major heart attack. Shortly after the tragedy and during my deep grief, I wrote the lyrics to the music except for one – Change The World. This was the only song from the soundtrack that I wrote while he was alive. I had watched a documentary on the plight of women in South East Asia and there was Japanese whaling in Australian waters in the news at the time also and I began crying. I was heartbroken at the state of the world and the atrocities human beings can inflict on each other and animals. Erick saw how sad I was and he picked up his acoustic guitar and began playing a tune. I grabbed a pen and notebook and began to sing – “Just in one night I’ve seen the world’s pain…” The song flowed from my heart and was written in about 15 minutes. However, it literally sat on the shelf for years until 2016 when I began working on my first documentary feature film “Angelena: Change The World” (now part of a trilogy series) and I decided that the songs Erick and I had written many years ago would become the soundtrack and “Change The World” the title track. I know Erick would be so proud of me for completing our project and I’m just so grateful to him for the gift of the instrumental music he wrote for me. It gave me an outlet to channel my emotions and grief and essentially heal. It literally saved my life.

OR: What was the most challenging aspect of working in a short film format?

AB: I absolutely love the short film format but it definitely has its challenges. The biggest hurdle is getting your message across clearly and concisely. My short film actually features in a 39 minute short film of the same title and each piece of the puzzle is a story unto itself. The short film format changes the tempo of a film and you have to make some tough decisions whilst creating and certainly during the editing process. You must ensure the audience understands your vision and is engaged right from the get-go.

OR: What was the most challenging aspect of your production?

AB: The most challenging aspect of my production was editing. I worked day and night on this film for months and gave it the love and respect it deserved. My performance side of the film was enjoyable and shot in one take from a few POVs. It was once I got in front of the computer and began editing that the real fun began! Luckily I enjoy every aspect of producing and I find editing to be another creative outlet for me. I wanted to bring my song to life and share my vision visually, not just aurally. It was a challenge but also very rewarding to finally see the finished product.

OR: Do you have any advice for first-time filmmakers?

AB: Filmmaking is very challenging and can take years from conception to completion. Possessing traits such as passion, perseverance and patience will benefit you greatly. I would advise choosing a subject matter and genre that is close to your heart and one that you believe in so that the journey can be organic. Above all else, enjoy the creative process and believe in yourself. They say that if you do what your love, you will never work a day in your life!