TOUCH: The motion picture without pictures, but with a purpose

Tony Krawitz and Benjamin Phillips worked to create a more inclusive cinematic experience.

Tony Krawitz and Benjamin Phillips worked to create a more inclusive cinematic experience. Photo: Supplied

A film from award-winning director Tony Krawitz is coming to cinemas this year – the only catch is there are no moving pictures.

TOUCH, an immersive sound experience by Mastercard in partnership with Westpac, tells the story of a young man, Ben, and his unlikely companions, Naomi and Mo.

After an experiment goes awry, the trio gets trapped in the consciousness of Ben’s father, Alf.

“In order to escape his mind, they have to go on an epic adventure through each of Alf’s memories, learning more about a man they thought they knew … and more about themselves, too,” a press release said.

The motion picture without pictures will premiere at Westpac OpenAir in Sydney on February 13 and all proceeds from tickets will go to Blind Citizens Australia.

Krawitz gained international recognition at the 2005 Cannes Film Festival for his film Jewboy and won a plethora of awards.

“What’s so unique about this film is it’s been made for and in collaboration with blind and low-vision people. It’s a motion picture, but with no pictures,” he said in an interview.

“Every step of the way, we’ve been collaborating with members of the community, as attachments, collaborators and in focus groups, to try to find out what they really want.”

pictured is a poster for TOUCH

TOUCH will premiere at Westpac OpenAir on February 13.

Actor Benjamin Phillips served as the director’s attachment for the film.

“I love going to the cinema,” Phillips said.

“The smell of popcorn, the laughter rippling throughout the crowd. But for me, and others who are blind or have low vision, the experience has always been an afterthought.”

Krawitz said it was “inspiring” to work alongside Phillips on TOUCH and hear his insights on things he doesn’t understand.

“Normally sound comes last and picture comes first. Here it’s been a whole reorganisation of thinking,” he said.

“From the script to working with the actors to working with the sound designers and composers of what do you hear and how you get led through a story by sound?”

Wayne Pashley (Elvis, Mad Max: Fury Road, The Lego Movie) served as sound director on TOUCH, while Jonathan Dreyfus (A Night of Horror, Fat Legs) worked as the composer.

Aided by inclusive filmmaking organisation Bus Stop Films, focus groups that included people who are blind and have low vision helped “inform and direct the outcome of the film”.

Additionally, the organisation supported blind and low-vision crew members in various roles such as project consultants and director’s attachments.

Stay informed, daily
A FREE subscription to The New Daily arrives every morning and evening.
The New Daily is a trusted source of national news and information and is provided free for all Australians. Read our editorial charter
Copyright © 2024 The New Daily.
All rights reserved.