Advanced filmmaking graduate showcases documentary at Fanshawe

Members of the band July Talk. CREDIT: COURTESY OF ADAMM LILEY
The screening of Farhat’s film, July Talk: Love Lives Here, will take place at Fanshawe’s Oxford St. campus in room D1060 from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Nov. 28.

If you are a fan of the popular indie rock band July Talk, you are in luck. On Nov. 28, Fanshawe is getting a screening of the documentary called July Talk: Love Lives Here. The documentary follows the group of five during the pandemic as they prepare to perform a concert at a drive-in theater.

“I grew up going to concerts and putting on live shows in my community as a teenager and was always just wondering how I could contribute to the music community through my filmmaking.” said Brittany Farhat, the director of the documentary.

Farhat is a Grand Bend native and a graduate of the advanced filmmaking program here at the college. She first got her start working alongside musicians in London filming music videos before making her mark in Fanshawe’s TV and Broadcasting program.

The Fanshawe College Student Success and Here For You logos are shown. A young woman is smiling, sitting at a desk. Text states: A new semester is here. Access student services! We are here for you.

“Early on, when I was a teen I was exposed to a lot of amazing artists within London. I eventually went on to study television broadcasting and advanced filmmaking at Fanshawe.” said Farhat.

After graduating, Farhat moved to Toronto to pursue her dream as a storyteller and launched her own production studio. She began to tour with bands documenting their journeys and continued to film music videos.

“I just was into working with musicians and decided to pursue my career full time to launch my own production company where I started touring with bands just documenting their life on the road, continuing to make music videos and just tell stories alongside musicians and artists that inspired me,” said Farhat.

Working inside the local indie scene helped Farhat expand her network, meeting new bands from across the Greater Toronto Area which led her to cross paths with July Talk.

“I was just immersed in the local indie rock scene there and early on July Talk really captured my attention as such an amazing live band, it was nothing like I’ve ever seen before, so I loved going to their concerts in Toronto and following their journey as a as a rock band,” said Farhat

She began to film their shows and edit them as she was inspired by their cinematography and black and white aesthetic. Farhat then reached out to the band.

“I reached out to them in 2020 and was like, ‘Hey, I love what you guys do. I would love to be able to contribute in any way that I can’ and at the time when I reached out to them, I didn’t really know what my involvement would be because there were so many ways and I had so many ideas,” said Farhat.

Throughout her time filming in the band, Farhat got to see more of the interpersonal bond the band had with one another and the artistic dynamic that makes the band the great musicians they are.

“When I attended one of their first rehearsals for the drive-in show in 2020, I started to realize how loving and welcoming their community was and how everybody was willing to help each other and to collaborate. Their journey as a band and to be able to kind of like hold on to those things, to hold on to that footage as well. There’s a lot of unreleased footage I was working with and this was all thanks to their creative community and the band allowing me to dive into their story in that way, so that was really beautiful.” said Farhat.

As her first full feature length film, Farhat showcased her documentary at the Hot Docs film festival in Toronto earlier this year, but having the opportunity to showcase her project where she got her start, hit closer to home.

“To be to be screening the film at Fanshawe next week means so much to me, it was such an amazing experience for me to attend the advanced filmmaking program as it was the place where I first got inspired to create films and really learn about filmmaking and to be able to bring it back to the school where I learned and got to exercise my creativity is just like so exciting,” said Farhat.

The screening of Farhat’s film, July Talk: Love Lives Here, will take place at Fanshawe’s Oxford St. campus in room D1060 from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. and is free for all staff and students to attend. A Q&A with Farhat will be held after the screening.