"I’ve had a huge paradigm shift in my approach to filmmaking since making my second film.  With Chris Byrne, we launched the Rebel Heart Film Workshop, where we share step by step how to make a stand out indie film.  We are making OF DUST AND BONES 100% according to the principles that we teach.  

Please check out our website, Rebel Heart Film where I will be blogging about the making of the film." - DIANE BELL 

Rebel Heart principles at work, at the heart Of Dust and Bones

Ultimately, a response to the experience I had making my first two films urged me to conceive of a different way to make my third film, OF DUST AND BONES, a way that will give me real creative freedom as well as time to work with my actors on set in a different way, time to go deep, to shoot when the light is right, to explore the scenes in the moment of filming in a penetrating, profound way.  To truly make the best film that we are capable of.

With OF DUST AND BONES, we will mostly be shooting at one location, a desert home near Joshua Tree that belongs to Matt Medlin, our producer (and producer of my first film). This will free us up considerably.  In essence, there are only three actors in the film, two of whom I also worked with on my first film, Gaynor Howe and Michael Piccirilli. I wrote these parts with them in mind, and have been developing the characters with them ever since.  I am also thrilled to be working with actor David Zaugh for the first time, who is already proving to be a dream collaborator.

Much of the crew are people I’ve already worked with. It will be my third collaboration with the composer Liam Howe, and with my brilliant editor John-Michael Powell. Julia Van Vliet, the production designer of my second film, will take that role again and make everything look amazing. I couldn’t be happier to be working with them all again. We have learnt so much together already, I feel we are ready to raise the bar on each other and ourselves in every way.  

The idea of this film is to go deep. To explore fully the cinematic possibilities of each scene and moment, to seek truth and beauty in every frame. I imagine “slow filmmaking”, steady, rich, uncompromising. Despite the small number of locations and cast, this is without doubt the most ambitious film I’ve attempted. I’ve been rewatching films by the likes of Bergman, Kiarostami, Kieslowski and Tarkovsky for inspiration – I want to make a film that is pure, unhurried, philosophical, true. It feels terrifying to me in many ways, but I also know that it’s when we take these frightening creative risks that we have the greatest chance to make something truly special.

We know this film is not a mainstream offering: that’s why we want to make it on a very small budget, so that we can be free from commercial constraints and really push ourselves to make something powerful, unique and creatively risky, something that will appeal deeply to a very particular niche audience of cinema lovers and poetic, philosophical thinkers, but probably not to everyone.