Bachelor of Arts, English, 2002
There’s a lot of support for creative people who think outside the box.
For moviegoers, Blackbird is an award-winning production about the juvenile detention system. For producer Marc Almon, the film is the biggest risk he’s ever taken.
"There were periods of production when I thought I was going to go bankrupt. It was a scary time,” he says. “It was really too low of a budget…we had to pull off something miraculous."
It was a risk worth taking for Almon. Recognition for Blackbird has come from far and wide – the film has received awards from several major international film festivals.
Almon has never been interested in playing it safe. When the Halifax native started in the Foundation Year Program in 1997, he was already jumping into filmmaking with both feet. He became a co-founding member of the burgeoning King’s Independent Film Society (KIFS), thinking it would be a fun addition to days spent studying English.
It became much more. KIFS grew and began presenting sold-out screenings of short films at the Oxford Theatre. When Almon graduated from King’s in 2002, he decided to forgo film school and start working. "My degree from King’s was all I needed," he said.
Almon worked in the film industry for five years, helping with television shows and supervising production on other people’s films. Working for others gave him insight into how to survive the industry. But at the end of the day, Almon had bigger ambitions: his own film company. "I always saw myself as an entrepreneur," he says.
As he struck out on his own in 2008, Almon chose to bring his passion back to the community that had nurtured it. His company, Story Engine Pictures, has an ambitious goal of producing one feature film a year.
"There’s a lot of support in Halifax for creative people who think outside the box, I feel privileged to be here and a part of that effort."
Posted: Apr. 2016