THE NOON GUN
UK/2004/27’/16mm/stereo
   

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(previous) <------ “In 2003, having finally grown weary of seeing this item reappear time and time again on my list of things to do, I took the candlesticks to their maker, the glass artist Anthony Stern. He offered to repair them for me, and asked me what I was up to.

“I had recently had a few shows of stills photographs at Westbourne Studios. With the big bump in processing power in Apple computers that had taken place at the end of 2002/early 2003, it had finally become possible to find an entry level into working with moving images, for something that approached a reasonable sum of money. I had recently invested in the new generation of Macs and editing software, and had begun to fulfill my lifelong dream of experimenting with moving images. This seemed a natural progression from my involvement with both music and the visual arts, a seemingly perfect opportunity to fuse my interests and skills.

“As I was leaving Anthony’s studio, he handed me a VHS of unedited, mute footage that he had shot in Afghanistan in 1971, and asked me if I thought I might be able to do something with it.

“Anthony had worked in the 1960’s and early 70’s as an experimental film maker, but had abandoned his film career in favor of glass making some thirty years prior and had not made a film in the intervening period. I first viewed the footage with Stephen, and then later brainstormed it with both Anthony and Steve.”

Stephen goes on to say “We looked for a story in Anthony’s footage, which essentially was film of his road trip through Afghanistan. One key sequence that he had filmed, on two separate occasions, was the daily firing of the noon gun, to announce the call to prayer. This became the link between what we identified as the film’s four main themes or chapters.”

Sadia and Stephen made the decision to score and edit the film simultaneously.

“Normally one scores music to a picture that is already cut” says Stephen. “In this instance, we would sometimes let the picture lead the music, but, alternatively, the music could lead the edit. So there was an immediate feedback between musical decisions and shot selection, and, since they both took place in the same room, there was a constant dialogue between the images and the score.”

Working together as ‘EQUA’, Sadia and Stephen chose to employ a fusion of world music influences for the soundtrack.

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produced by Sadia Sadia

edited by Sadia Sadia and Stephen W Tayler

sound design and mix by Stephen W Tayler

music by Equa

directed and filmed by Anthony Stern

THE NOON GUN trailer

IMDb entry

 

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