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The making of Nexus

Between shots on 'Nexus'.

Relaxing between shots.

This film won a Gold Standard award.

The story of Nexus is a personal one.

Two people separated by time and fate, each living in a completely different world, but still connected through a very thin, invisible line.

That is something many people can relate to. Longing for something that is out there, but out of reach. Longing for someone lost, or almost forgotten. Themes that are a part of many people's daily life.

In Nexus, we follow two of those people. Both yearning for that single thing that could end their painful wondering about their past and future.

Nexus was started as an attempt to process stacked away feelings about a painful memory.

Berry Van Der Vorst giving direction to his cast.

Berry Van Der Vorst giving direction.

Applying make-up for 'Nexus'.


In a way, writing the piece was hard, since it was an emotional process, but on the other hand, there also was a redeeming side to it. It was a way to express inner feelings, for which film proves to be a great medium over and over again. Through the eyes and ears, film communicates directly to the heart and enables the filmmaker to grab his audience in a hugely effective and universally comprehensible way. Writing Nexus was overall a pleasant experience and - as is the case with any other film - was a great way to find out what the final movie was going to be like. How we were going to 'grab' the audience. What style would suit this story best? What were we actually trying to achieve?

Still from 'Nexus'. Still from 'Nexus'.

In finding the right faces for each part, casting via the internet proved to be a very useful tool for us. There are many sites and opportunities to post your advert, and it wasn't too hard to get a decent number of responses from which suitable candidates were picked.

One of the most important things we learned on this project is that proper timing is of eminent importance. You cannot have the burden of still being in the middle of casting when the start of photography is already looming on the horizon. At the time we were finally ready to shoot, casting and planning were done (albeit just on time), and a smooth couple of days of filming lay ahead of us.

Still from 'Nexus'.

Having done a proper amount of 'location scouting' (hate the word), proved very helpful, since we were able to start shooting on the spot. Personally I find rehearsing on a film like Nexus redundant, because spontaneity is very helpful when you work with fellow amateurs. It supports the 'freshness' of the scene and enables you to work with that small bit of 'being real' that is left to actors when they immerse themselves in their roles. As long as you don't play a character that is miles away from who you are, putting in something of yourself can help both the actors and the director to make it more real.

All are amateurs, so expecting the impossible from your colleagues can work the other way round. That is one of the things that made filming Nexus a great experience, a good atmosphere on set and just trying for the best, stimulating each other to push it just a bit further. Being enthusiastic and motivated truly is the number one rule in amateur filmmaking.

Still from 'Nexus'. Still from 'Nexus'.

I think Nexus is the culmination of a personal story, a positive approach to the project by all who participated and just a pleasant working atmosphere, which in the end resulted in a movie that we are all proud of. And hopefully are rightly so.

- Berry Van Der Vorst     March 2006

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Page updated on 09 October 2011
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