Steven Ball
Marie Craven
Solrun Hoaas
Daryl Dellora

Melbourne independent filmmakers

Leo Berkeley
Giorgio Mangiamele
Michael Buckley
Moira Joseph
 
     


Richard Wolstencroft
(aka Richard Masters)
b. April 23, 1969, Melbourne, Australia.

BIOGRAPHY:   Richard Wolstencroft is an independent filmmaker, who has shot four features, three completed, and many shorts, on 16mm, Super 8 and video. He worked with Mark and Colin Savage in his teens, who served as his mentors and his 'film school'.

He collaborated with Jon Hewitt on the feature Bloodlust in 1990, which Wolstencroft directed at the ripe age of 21. It starred Phil Motherwell, Kelly Chapman and Robert O'Neill.

 

Wolstencroft then made The Intruder as a 'director for hire' for Boulevard Films from a script by Frank Howson, which was never completed due to Boulevard's financial disintegration. It starred Lachy Hulme, Paul Moder and Tottie Goldsmith.

In 1992 Wolstencroft created and ran the "The Hellfire Club" in Melbourne and Sydney, an adventure which launched him into the world of nightlife decadence and debauchery, and which lasted for ten years. From this milieu in 1996 Wolstencroft wrote and directed Pearls Before Swine, starring Boyd Rice, Nick Crawford Smith and Lisa Hutchinson. It took Wolstencroft three years to complete the film, fighting a liver abscess along the way, finally getting the finished film to premiere at the Stockholm International Film Festival in November 1999. The film also played at Puchon, Sitges and Ajijic film fests in 2000/1. In 2000, the film was rejected by MIFF and in response Wolstencroft founded the Melbourne Underground Film Festival (MUFF), which is now in its sixth consecutive year in 2005.

Wolstencroft is an occasional writer for periodicals like Large, Beat Magazine and Filmnet. He has also made some fetish films that have been sold overseas, as well as appeared in videos and magazines along similar themes. Wolstencroft completed an honours year in a BA for Philosophy at La Trobe in 2003.



 

CRITICAL OVERVIEW:   What interests me with cinema is the vast potential for it to open up new ways to examine human existence and the world. Cinema is a very young art form. The modes of expression already developed in cinema are only the tip of the iceberg, of what I believe is cinema's real power and potential.

Cinema can make manifest the phenomenological nature of cognition in a way that can echo human beings' own cognitive perception in an uncanny and disturbing manner. I feel the future of cinema lies here in the explication of philosophical ideas and cinema. The nature of film has the power to appropriate modes of existence through film. Film is existential, existence is filmic. I do not wish to pursue film theory as just theory, say through subject matter that is not ecstatic and vital. I am also deeply committed to making this exposition exciting through traditional film language i.e. genre or narrative or mise en scene. My own two features Bloodlust and Pearls Before Swine have their basis in exploitation and genre film-making. They hopefully contribute to these film zones by attempting a new interpretation of the genre and subject matters they deal with. But they have only hints about the revolution in cinema that interests me. I therefore consider them to a certain extent 'juvenilia' (early works), especially Bloodlust.

I hope that in the future I will be able to realise some of the more recent ideas I have had about cinema.

For me, also, particularly genre and taboo subjects of sex, death and violence are perfect mediums to express the more deeper philosophical/cinematic matters that interest me.

My film passions are also practical and political. Through MUFF, film writings and my other film activities, I hope I am contributing to the cause of fostering a different voice in Australian film. It is no secret I find the majority of Australian cinema M.O.R., insipid and just plain dull. There is much we can do to improve this situation.

Richard Wolstencroft, April 2003


FILMOGRAPHY:

 

Shorts -

Early Shorts: (Often featuring RW and two childhood/teenage friends Mark Horponitch and Jamie White. Some of these we co-wrote and directed also as a collective. Super 8s marked and the rest shot on Video. "Redux" means in this context early imitation of said film with same title)

Plasticine Godzilla - Animation - Super 8 (My first film made in 1980 at 11 years of age)

In Search of U.F.O's

The Pillow Fight
Synopsis: Goes awry.

Halloween (Redux)

Mad Max (Redux)

Smelly Magnums
Send up of Dirty Harry movies

Sad Case
Send up of Basket Case

Dr. Who and the Attack of the Bean Bags
Send up of Dr. Who

Dorothy and John
Synopsis: Mock Diet Infomercial

Three untitled Slasher shorts shot on video


Early to Mid Eighties more Serious shorts on Super 8 and Video:

Danse Macabre 10 mins
Starring and directed by Richard Wolstencroft and Jamie White.
Synopsis: Murder in Lower Templestowe as an evening of two friends ends in Violence.

Alias Version 1 & 2 Length approx 10 mins each
Directed by Richard Wolstencroft Starring RW, Chris Williams, Marcus Corn, Jamie White and others.
Synopsis: Send up of the film Alien, second version more elaborate and shot at Radiation Lab in Yallambie.

The Elevator (VHS video)
Starring and directed by Richard Wolstencroft.
Synopsis: An intolerant business executive takes an elevator ride straight to hell

The Blaxton Fate (1983, 20 mins, Super 8)
Starring Jamie White Directed by Richard Wolstencroft.
Synopsis: A caretaker minds a spooky house in South Yarra that is possessed by the spirit of a evil young girl.

The Joker (1983, 10 mins, Super 8)
Starring Marcus Corn and Chris Williams Directed By Richard Wolstencroft.
Synopsis: The local prankster pulls his final prank.

16 Red Pencils (Working Title: Nothing) (1984, 18 mins)
Written by Richard Wolstencroft Directed and Produced by Richard Wolstencroft and Marcus Corn. Starring RW, Jamie White and Jill Corn.
Synopsis: A tale of a disaffected Private School boy who descends into a world of violence and insanity. Film incorporates abstract and experimental sequences, shot on Location in Templestowe, Doncaster and at Ivanhoe Grammar School.


Shorts post 1986:

Angel Dust (1987, 12 mins, Super 8)
Starring Mark and Colin Savage, Paul Harrington, Zero Montana and others.
Synopsis: Two drug deals go wrong as our hero is betrayed by a femme fatale with fatal results.

The Savages (10 mins approx., Super 8)
Starring Mark and Colin Savage.
Synopsis: Two brothers attempt to kill each other in bizarre ways in park as part of some perverse game and succeed!

Off Season (1989, 8 mins, 16mm, Trailer)
Starring Colin Savage, James Cain, Rebekah Kay, RW and others. Based on the Book by Jack Ketchum (aka Dallas Mayr). Directed by Richard Wolstencroft. Shot on the Mornington Peninsula.
NOTE: Wolstencroft attempted to make this as his first feature.

"Hey, Hey, We're The Prostitutes" (1989, 6 mins, Super 8)
Film Clip and live footage for The Prostitutes

"Hooray" (mid 90s, 4 mins, 16mm)
SNOG film clip. Live footage Shot and Directed by Richard Wolstencroft.


New Shorts:

Natasha Never Learns
credited as Richard Masters director/writer

Victoria Says Uncle
credited as Richard Masters director/writer

The Question Concerning CP (2001, 30 mins, video)
credited as Richard Masters director/writer

Macbeth (2003, 20 mins, mini DV)
Made with the drama students of La Trobe University. Directed by Richard Wolstencroft.
Excerpts of a modern retelling of the Scottish Play with Macbeth as a drug dealer.

The Man who Spanked a Thousand Women (2004, 30 mins, mini DV)
The Dave Neilson Nu-West Interview San Marcos CA
Interviewer Kristen Condon


Features:

Bloodlust (1990, 89 mins)
co-writer/director w Jon Hewitt

The Intruder (1991) (uncompleted)
director

Pearls Before Swine (1999, 96 mins)
writer/director

The Beautiful and Damned (2008, 100 mins)
writer/director


New Feature Doco:

The Making of Pearls Before Swine (2005) mini DV
Shot by Mark Bloothoofd. Compiled by Richard Wolstencroft and Kristen Condon.


Completed Scripts as yet unproduced and New Projects:

Nemesis By Richard Wolstencroft and Jon Hewitt

Titus Andronicus by W. Shakespeare Adapted by Boyd Rice and Richard Wolstencroft

Three other feature projects are in various stages of scriptwriting, preparation and pre-production. Other non fiction documentary and TV projects are also being prepared and conceived.


SELECT BIBLIOGRAPHY:

Filmnet various see archive site

if magazine

Misanthrope magazine issue 2

Fangoria Magazine issue 162

Large magazine various

Beat Magazine (editor 1989-1990)

catalogues of Stockholm Int Film festival 1999, Puchon Int. film Festival 2000, Sitges Film festival 2000, Ajijic Film Festival 2001.


WEB RESOURCES:

Article from 2004 MUFF coverage in The Age

Films at Boyd Rice site

The 2003 controversy at MUFF 1

The 2003 controversy at MUFF 2

The Best of MUFF program Canberra 2004


Richard Wolstencroft, March 2005

Contact Richard Wolstencroft

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Melbourne independent filmmakers is compiled by Bill Mousoulis