THE FOURTH WALL
Directed by Kelsey Bollig
Switzerland/France | 11:30 min
Chloé fights for her moment in the spotlight. How far will she go to upstage the annoying actors with whom she is forced to perform Shakespeare’s ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’?
‘The Fourth Wall’ bloomed out of tragedy. Although it wasn’t intended to be a beacon of hope for myself and for my EP Victoria Lacoste, it turned into the light at a very long tunnel. 3 days before my flight to scout in Paris in June 2019, I was run over by a car. 30 of my bones were broken. I lacerated my spleen, liver and punctured both my lungs. During my month-long stay in the hospital, and a brief stint fighting for my life and ability to walk – my heart was equally breaking – I thought along with losing myself, I had lost the opportunity to film ‘The Fourth Wall.’ Little did I know that I was working with people, both in the hospital and in my cast and crew, who would not let that happen. It took me 3 months to become well enough to fly to Paris, cane in hand. After a successful location scout, taking a giant leap of faith with crew members we knew nothing about, we were ready to film the damn thing. And thus began the journey of writing/directing a film in a language I don’t speak in a city I don’t live in with a cast and crew I would grow to call family. ’The Fourth Wall’ is about the labyrinth of sanity. It’s the interworking of one woman’s mind as she faces her decaying acting career and the moronic newcomers replacing her. Living in Los Angeles, I’ve watched both men and women sink deep into madness chasing their dreams and failing, not for lack of talent, but because they didn’t fit the mold society accepts as “star material.” This lack of diversity and these unfair standards inspired the script for ‘The Fourth Wall’ which addresses the personalities succeeding within the industry and plays on these extremes in a moody and satirical manner. ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ became the perfect frame to place these stereotypes as it’s one of Shakespeare’s only comedies that doesn’t involve any type of tragedy. The perfect contrast of lightness to the darkness that’s evolving backstage. The unique twist in ‘The Fourth Wall,’ and the elephant in the room when people learn about this project, is that it’s set in Paris and spoken in French – while I’m an American filmmaker who speaks English. I felt it necessary to set this story in France because I wanted to reconnect American cinema to the birthplace of cinema while also blending french and American culture and taste. The result? An explosion of perfectionists and passion with a dash of madness.
It might be disconcerting for a young girl to spend her childhood daydreaming about murder, but it was Kelsey Bollig’s fascination with the perverse that set her up for massive success at an early age. The dark prodigy spent the majority of her childhood watching horror films and writing scripts, landing Bollig her first best Screenplay Award at the tender age of 12, for her Feature, ‘Big Kids Play Manslaughter’ at the Hollywood Shriekfest Horror Film Festival. Bollig is a fresh yet commanding face in the world of Horror, a genre most dominated by men. Her award-winning short ‘Asking for a Friend’ has accumulated 15 awards to date and has paved the way for her second short ‘The Fourth Wall’ which has already snagged the Best Director award at the HorrorHound Film Festival and Best Female Filmmaker at the NOLA Horror Film Festival. Bollig has written and directed projects in both the US and France expanding her creative network within both English and foreign markets. She’s currently in development with Chick Entertainment (Swallow, 2019) and Producer Megha Kadakia (The Tiger Hunter, 2016) on a horror/thriller feature ‘Gatekeeper.’ Bollig keeps an uncanny finger on the pulse of today’s culture while offering a thought-provoking and multi-layered, acute sensory experience.