Seven Questions with Alexander Casimir

Alexander Casimir is the director of Straw Man. In the film, a scarecrow sets out to save his family’s farm from foreclosure.

1. Who are your film influencers?

My film influences are Jean-Pierre Jeunet, Vince Gilligan, Spike Lee, and the DANIELs.

2. What are the toughest aspects of making a film today?

Making a movie is a challenge in itself but finding people to watch it can be even harder. Especially as attention spans get shorter.

3. Best advice you’ve received as a filmmaker?

Best advice I’ve ever received as a filmmaker?  My mom is always telling to stay patient. No one ever talks about all the time you have to spend waiting patiently for something big to happen. Stay hungry and be ready for the phone call or email that will change your career.

4. What does it mean to you to be a Black filmmaker?

Being a Black filmmaker makes me feel like I’m going up against the world. Sometimes it’s a sad feeling, as if there so many odds working against me. But most of the time, it’s this feeling of righteousness. I feel like I’m helping push the industry forward.

 

5. What does it mean to you that your film is on Aspire TV and other platforms?

I’m incredibly grateful to be sharing Straw Man with a larger audience. I really hope you all enjoy watching it as much as I enjoyed making it.

6. Advice you would give the next gen following you?

I think the best advice I can give to the next generation of filmmakers is to take your work seriously but don’t take yourself seriously.

7.Are there any inspirational films, articles or books that you would recommend to go deeper into the topics and themes in your film?

I highly recommend reading Toni Morrison’s The Origin of Others. The book dissects how humans use the concept of “otherness” as a way to dehumanize groups of people and justify economic exploitation. This is a critical motif of Straw Man and Morrison’s words helped us elevate the short film’s script.