What happens when a pregnant movie director finds out she’s made it to the Cannes Film Festival?
She goes into labour, of course.
Writer and director Katie Ross is now not only proud ‘mum’ to short film VIII, soon to be showcased at one of the most important film festivals in the world, but also mum to beautiful baby girl Lola.
“We received the news of our acceptance into the Cannes Film Festival and couldn’t believe our luck, as it’s the biggest and most prestigious film festival in the world,” said Katie.
“But I think the excitement must have been too much, because that’s when I started to feel the contractions coming.”
Baby Lola arrived on March 27, a few hours before midnight, weighing in at a healthy 7lbs 13oz. “She’s a beautiful addition to our family and I’m so very proud of her and her mum,” said dad Stewart, who produced VIII.
“For Katie to have made such a brilliant film, along with already being mum to our 17-month-old Molly-Mae, is truly remarkable.”
The couple, who live in Sherburn-in-Elmet, have been married eight years and manage production company Rossi Pictures and the IPM Acting Academy on Kirkstall Road. They had always planned to make a film for Cannes and expand their family, but didn’t expect it all to come together at the same time.
“Both experiences have been pretty overwhelming, because everything seemed to happen at once, but we wouldn’t change it for the world,” said Stewart.
VIII is described as ‘explosive, tender and surreal with almost a dream-like plot.’
The film re-writes British history in a way never seen before, explains Katie, being based around Henry VIII and the Tudor period.
It was devised through IPM Acting Academy classes, which used improvisation to develop plot and character, based around Katie’s overall synopsis and creative vision.
Around 60 people took part as cast and crew, with filming taking place across three 12-hour days, in and around Leeds in September last year.
VIII has a running time of 28 minutes and will be shown at the prestigious Short Film Corner at the Cannes Film Festival, which runs from May 14-25 and is attended by the world’s most influental film talent, across all disciplines.
“I’m extremely proud of the whole team - all their hard work has paid off with an excellent result,” said Katie.
“This is a huge platform for everyone involved. To complete a film and all its elements, from beginning to end, as well as be accepted by the Cannes Film Festival is just incredible,” she said.