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‘The right path’: New Mexico filmmaker’s patience pays off with feature ‘Philophobia’

Aaron Burt, left, in a scene from “Philophobia: Or the Fear of Falling in Love.” (Courtesy of Gravitas Ventures)

Good things come to those who wait.

In Aaron Burt’s case, it took five years to get a feature film for “Philophobia: Or the Fear of Falling in Love” off the ground.

The hard work has paid off; the film will be distributed by Gravitas Ventures. It will be available on digital platforms on Tuesday, Nov. 12.

“We did a short version of the film almost five years ago,” the New Mexico native says. “We thought that would be that and we would never touch the concept again. Then I had an epiphany of how to make it into a feature.”

“Philophobia: Or the Fear of Falling in Love” tells the story of mildly successful podcaster, Damien Booster, who is digging his bachelor lifestyle until a frequent hookup confesses her love for him while delivering an ultimatum.

If he shows up for brunch to meet her mother, she’ll know he is serious.

If not, things are over between them.

Terrified of his true feelings, Booster, played by Burt, accepts this breakup, but his mind and inner feelings begin to spin out of control with haunting visions of commitment, just in time for his hometown best friend to visit him in Los Angeles.

He attempts to maneuver through his psychological and emotional breakdown to show his friend a good time in Hollywood, but his fear of love may get the best of him.

Burt not only starred in the film, but he wrote it as well.

“Getting my mind to switch over took some time,” he says. “I would go for a jog to clear my mind and get on the right path.”

In fact, running is where Burt got the idea to turn the short film into a feature.

It’s also where he realized how he would raise the money for the film.

“(Director) Tyler (Cole) and I were depressed that we weren’t able to raise the money for another project,” Burt says. “Then I realized I can take the script for that film and rewrite it to change the scenery. I had to make the characters more apparent, and the consistency of the story began to take shape.”

Filming took place in California in 2017 over 15 days.

“We did three days of re-shoots,” he says. “We started pitching to distributors, and Gravitas was on the high scale for us. They agreed to watch it, and when we got the letter for distribution, it felt great. The hard work paid off. I’ve had no time to process all of this. I’m grateful that they found a place for this film.”

Burt says the dark comedy was made with a $17,000 budget, which was raised from Kickstarter.

“We had a crew of eight people, with only one person per department,” he says. “It was definitely a journey for us all.”

 

SEND ME YOUR TIPS: If you know of a movie filming in the state, or are curious about one, email film@ABQjournal.com. Follow me on Twitter @agomezART.

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