Following months of award-winning screenings at film festivals worldwide, the latest feature film, The Colour of Spring, from Nova Scotian director Paul Andrew Kimball, returns February 14 to its hometown with a premiere television screening on Eastlink Community TV.
We all make our own choices. We are not predestined. Thoughts do not define actions, but actions have consequences. A lot of the film is working out what the consequences of those actions are and whether you can rewrite your past by doing the right thing when the time comes. – Paul Andrew Kimball on The Colour of Spring
Shot in Windsor, Chester, Avonport, and Halifax, The Colour Of Spring tells the story of stage actress Sarah and her partner Sam, who look like a perfect couple to the outside world. But their relationship begins to crack under the pressure of Sarah’s new gig and Sam’s feelings of inadequacy. But there’s something more sinister afoot that could change everything as they know it.
“It is a love story set with slightly supernatural overtones about a young couple who fall apart and then how they kind of piece their lives back together,” says director and writer Kimball by phone.
While admitting it may describe 98% of independent films out there, Kimball says it is the supernatural aspect of the film that sets The Colour of Spring apart.
“In this case, one of the two characters makes a rather big mistake,” continues Kimball. “I don’t want to give too much away, but it is the kind of mistake that tends to ruin a relationship. So then they spend the rest of the film trying to find the way back to what we call ‘home,’ which I would define as the true nature of who they are and their love for each other.”
No stranger to the supernatural, Kimball is also responsible for Haunted. This popular Eastlink television show follows Kimball and his team to some of the Maritimes’ most haunted locations.
It is a genre that has taken root with Kimball. And while Haunted deals more with ghosts, he says The Colour of Spring is more about Dante’s Inferno or Satre’s No Exit.
“For me, it is all a question of who we are, where do we come from, and where are we going after we shuffle off this mortal coil,” explains Kimball.
“So, when I say supernatural about The Colour of Spring, it is about what happens to us after we die, and do the actions that we take in this life impact where we go after we die. Heaven, hell, purgatory, all those kinds of things.”
Describing himself as an “Arminian free will type” instead of a “Calvinist predestination type,” Kimball believes we all can make our own choices, good and bad.
“Thoughts do not define actions, but actions have consequences,” he says. “A lot of the film is working out what the consequences of those actions are and whether you can sort of rewrite your past by doing the right thing when the time comes.”
Written by Kimball almost a dozen years ago, the film almost got made nine years ago, but like many films, it sat on the back burner while Kimball undertook other projects.
“Eventually, I dusted the script off and realized it was the best script I have ever written and just as good as it was eleven years ago,” he says.
With a title change, a few changes to the original script to incorporate his leading man Jamie Moscato’s musical abilities and the addition of several original songs, Kimball feels it is a better film than he could have made a decade ago.
“It is not the film I would have imagined making eleven years ago because that was a different film,” he says. “But because of the people we cast and some of the things that happened in the intervening years that I think made me a better filmmaker and better storyteller.”
Shot almost entirely in black and white, Kimball admits The Colour of Spring is a bit of a commercial risk but opened up storytelling possibilities.
“I think that it enhances the narrative,” says Kimball. “Maybe you do not want to see The Avengers in black and white, but independent films offer more opportunities to do more interesting creative artistic things.”
By shooting in black and white, Kimball shot it the way he wanted, telling the story he wanted to tell and making it look the way he wanted it to look. “Hopefully, people like it. But if they do not, well, that is okay too,” he says.
A big proponent of supporting local artists, Kimball concludes by saying that much of the film’s success comes from the local actors and crew involved.
“I cannot say enough about the acting,” he says. “It has great performances from actors like Alexa Morton, Jamie Moscato and Ellie Haydon that I think you are going to see a lot of in years to come.”
He also says audiences will also see themselves reflected in The Colour of Spring. “And it will move you emotionally, and it will make you think too.”
The Colour of Spring premieres on Eastlink Community TV on February 14 at 10:00 pm Atlantic time. Check your local listings.