Science fiction has always had a place in JJ Pollack’s heart.
It explains perfectly why the filmmaker would make the short, “Jettison,” which will have its New Mexico premiere at the Albuquerque Film and Music Experience on Saturday, Sept. 17.
“Jettison” is about a restless young woman who ships off to fight an interstellar war, only to struggle with the effects of being cut off from her home by both time and space.
Produced with support from the Other Worlds Film Festival, the short uses the sci-fi genre to explore feelings of alienation among veterans sent overseas.
Pollack began the process of working on the film in 2016 when he applied for a grant from the Other Worlds Film Festival.
“I decided to write the story,” he says. “My parents are both psychiatrists and the whole experience for veterans to come back and reintegrate into society is difficult. The story is a fusion of both of those elements.”
The short was filmed in 2017 over a couple of weekends – four days in total, with another day of pick-up shots.
Then it sat in Pollack’s hard drive for two years.
“I had gotten so busy with other projects that it went unnoticed,” he says. “I began editing in 2019 and it took two years to get it right. That’s four years of my life I’ve spent on the film.”
The film runs 11 minutes and 13 seconds.
Pollack says he hasn’t filmed any more shorts since “Jettison” because he’s focusing on feature films.
“This is the film that I’ve spent the most time and energy on,” he says. “It feels like my graduation piece. The pandemic helped me realize that I want to create feature films. I’m starting to shop around and get funding for a few that I’ve written.”
The Texas-based filmmaker will use his time in Albuquerque at the festival to network.
“Texas only has a 10% rebate for films,” he says. “I’ve been learning more about New Mexico’s and it could be the spot for me to film some of the upcoming features.”
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