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Filmmaker Focus | Alexandra Blue

In this week’s edition of filmmaker focus, we will be exploring the varied and impactful career of talent-led creative producer, Alexandra Blue. As the founder of Bluebird Productions, Alexandra favours bold, original and inventive storytelling and has experience not just with award-winning short films but features and television too. 

As we explore Alexandra’s journey into filmmaking, we will look at some of this insanely talented producer's most renowned short films and examine how Alexandra approaches being a creative producer, both in terms of short films and features. 

So, who is Alexandra Blue? 

Alexandra Blue is an award-winning creative producer whose short films have been selected for and received critical acclaim at Oscar long-qualifying festivals, including BFI London and Palm Springs. She was also selected for the BFI’s Flagship Emerging Producer Programme, which supports the next generation of UK producers as they bring original feature films to the big screen. 

Alexandra’s feature slate includes projects currently in development with Netflix, BFI and Creative UK. And previously, she has even worked as a development executive for big titles such as Paddington and ’71. Her slate of short films includes Martha, which was funded by the BFI; Cinderella Games, an original dance film commissioned by English National Ballet, and Welcome to Iron Knob, which won the ‘short film of the decade’ award at the Australian Academy awards. 

Journey into Filmmaking 

As we welcomed Alexandra Blue to the podcast following our review of her short films End-O and Martha, Alexandra reflected upon her journey into filmmaking. As a child, she was always interested in storytelling and would devour books. In fact, she would often find herself bumping into poles as she would be so immersed in these fictional worlds. As her parents were both teachers, Alexandra wasn’t allowed to watch much film or television. So, it wasn’t until she was much older that she discovered her love for film and what particularly excited was how it inspired worlds and allowed her to escape to places she has never been before. Despite her deep love for film, she never saw filmmaking as a career path and nor did her parents—who argued it was not a viable way to make money. 

So, Alexandra went to university to study Arts and Media. But it was there she undertook a module in production and was encouraged by her tutors to dabble in the world of short film and explore her career options. So, this is what she did. She volunteered as a runner and was even given the opportunity to act as a 1st AD on a small production. And the more she did this, the further her foot got through the door and the more she fell in love with filmmaking as a career. As she began exploring the different options for her in terms of a career in film, Alexandra reflects on how she never really felt driven to write or direct, but she did love being heavily involved in the creative process and nurturing talent. So, this is how she discovered her true calling – producing. 

Though, Alexandra states that to make short films, you need to have another job, and this is one of two reasons why her career is so varied. Firstly, she wanted to have a role that was creative yet allowed her freedom to make art, but she also wanted to learn about every aspects of filmmaking so she could have a broad understanding of the industry and what is involved in running a production. This way, Alexandra can not only help with script development, but assisting directors on set and giving notes on edits as a film enters post-production. 

Alexandra Blue’s Short Films

Alexandra loves to work on short films that are bold and original, much like the aforementioned short film, End-O

End-O, written by Elaine Gracie, follows Jaq (Sophia Di Martino), a young woman who wants to have sex. But her Endometriosis is out to sabotage her with chronic pain and unpredictable bleeding – right at the worst time. 

Alexandra reflects on End-O and what it was that initially drew her to the script. It was the lack of conversations and knowledge that people have surrounding this issue, which impacts 1 in 10 women in the UK. In fact, she recalls an occasion where she and the film’s writer Elaine Gracie submitted the film to be screened at a Film Club who subsequently rejected it as their target demographic was men over 50. While she accepted their opinion, she argued that in fact—this was the exact film that that target demographic needed to see as chances are, they know somebody who is impacted by Endometriosis. 

Other notable short films include Martha and Sarah Chong is Going to Kill Herself. Though Alexandra is now at a stage in her career where she is trying to steer away from narrative short films as funding is harder to get and she would much rather those funding opportunities went to indie filmmakers who are just starting out and want to make their mark on the world. 

Alexandra has so much creative work in the pipeline, from feature films to television productions with collaborators like Eleven (the production company behind Sex Education). In fact, she and Elaine Gracie are currently working on a series where Endometriosis is a key theme with the main character suffering from the condition. So, it’s clear that while she steps away from short films, Alexandra is forever influenced by bold, original stories that open eyes and make an impact. 

You can check out our interview with Alexandra Blue below:

And you can also watch her short films by heading to our dedicated page. Keep up to date with Alexandra and her projects by following the links below:

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