Foundations of film making

Tamara Hardman on set

Tamara Hardmann (BCreatArts(Screen)’17) wrote, directed, produced and edited the 2022 Adelaide Film Festival Best Short Film, Are You Really The Universe? The award winning film stars Flinders Drama graduate Antoine Jelk (BCreatArts(Drama) ’14) with costume, hair and makeup by Lauren Brice (BCreatArts(Screen ‘15).

The idea for her award-winning short film, Are You Really The Universe? began to take shape while Tamara was creating her final year project at Uni.

“I had this idea of romance and miscommunication between people and not saying what you really want to say,” she said.

“I started writing it but never pushed myself to finish it until recently, so I could apply for the Hanlon Larson Screen Fellowship. I didn’t win that grant but going through that process really broke something open in the story, and it really came alive for me then.”

The Helpmann Academy entrusted Tamara and her team in making the film and provided her with a grant to fund it.

“I’d previously undertaken a mentorship through Helpmann, and they’ve always been big supporters of my work and growth,” she said.

“The Adelaide Film Festival also supported the film as part of their Investment Fund – I had such an excellent cast and crew on this film and we made it in quite a unique way.

“Each person in the team has played a significant role in the success of Are You Really The Universe? and we’re all so proud of what we’ve achieved. The award is a really big vote of confidence in my work, and the film we made.”

When she was young, Tamara wanted to be an author, but this goal changed when, in high school, she discovered film.

“I still write though, I’m just writing screenplays instead of books,” she says.

“I chose to study film at Flinders because it has such a practical focus on film making.

“A big part of my studies included collaborating on film projects with other students, plus I learnt a lot about the culture of the film industry.

“I also made some great friends during my time at Flinders; we went out and watched films together, pushed each other to work harder, and learned from each other – I’m still really close to many of them.

“Flinders gave me a solid foundation to work from and I still use what I learned in my film making today, and I also developed a deeper sense of passion for film while I was there. It’s shaped the person I am and my love of film.”

In her final year at Flinders, Tamara interned with Adelaide based filmmakers Closer Productions, who’s mini-series The Hunting was released on SBS in 2019. When she graduated, Tamara began working part-time with Closer, and the amount of project work has gradually increased from there.

“It all started with that first internship, and it just worked out,” she said.

“I have worked there for around four years now. I worked on The Hunting and more recently I did a fair amount of work as an assistant on a feature film, Good Luck To You Leo Grande.

“Adelaide’s film making community took a real hit when COVID came along, but now I’m seeing a really great young community of passionate filmmakers emerging and that’s very exciting.”

To read more about the stellar line up of Flinders University filmmakers, writers and directors who are involved in this year’s Adelaide Film Festival read Film festival talent to the fore.

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College of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences Creative arts and media

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