Short film Shift by Patrick Ryder and Del Mak won Madonna’s Art for Freedom competition

He came to our attention in 2012, after his short film Cerberus, shot on a budget of just £50, won the prestigious Film The House competition. Now filmmaker Patrick Ryder is riding high again, after his new film Shift won Madonna’s Art for Freedom competition, securing a $10,000 grant for a charity of his choice.

“I’m really overwhelmed,“ the south Harrow resident says, “winning for Cerberus was a big thing, but to win for Shift... I just don’t know what to say.

Harrow Times:

“When you win awards for your films you’re usually just getting a pat on the back, which is great, but it’s nice to think that in this instance you get to give something back through charity.“

Shift, a joint project between Patrick and Del Mak, is an imaginative short, which follows a white-collar worker who escapes the confines of his working environment through the medium of dance.

Del, who has worked with the likes of Beyonce, choreographed the film, which stars Renako McDonald, runner up on Sky One’s Got to Dance television series. The music was created from an original score by friend Ben Symons.

The movie was shot over a period of 20 hours, with locations in west Harrow park making an appearance.

“The premise of the film came from a silent, black and white romantic film I’d made,“ explains Patrick. “The film focused on a guy in an office who wanted to escape. Once the film was completed I thought to myself, it’s not quirky enough, maybe dance would make a difference.

“I’m not a ‘dance’ guy, but I’d known Del since working with him in Woolies about ten years ago, and what he could do, so I approached him to co-direct the film. I knew how to cut the film, but no idea when it came to dance. It was great teaming up with him, he really drove the film forward.“

It was Del’s idea to submit the film to Madonna’s Art for Freedom competition, and last week the duo heard their film had been selected as the winner.

“Madonna and her team pick a film they like from the submissions every day, with an overall winner selected at the end of the month,“ the father-of-two says. “We’ve also had some recognition from other celebrities such as Adam Garcia, who tweeted that he thought the film was ‘wonderfully performed and brilliant realisation’, which is good.

“As for the charities, we’re still ironing out the final details as to which causes will be receiving the $10,000, I’ve opted for Sense, which helps people who are deaf and have learning difficulties. It’s a cause particularly close to my heart as my sister-in-law Elizabeth is affected.“

Besides the Art for Freedom competition, the duo have submitted their film to a series of film festivals including Sundance, and are working on their own separate projects – for Patrick that’s a film involving time travel.

“We do have plans to make another film together though,“ he says. “It will either involve dance again or martial arts. Either way, we make a great team.“                  

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