Interview: Tim Glover, IMAX Big Picture In Focus Award Winner

The Movie Sleuth
recently traveled to Atlanta for the 2016 Atlanta Sci-fi Film Festival. One Atlanta native, Tim Glover, was the recipient of IMAX's Big Picture In Focus Award for his film, N-Touch, a film that poses the question, "What if a wearable tech allowed us to instantaneously know everything about another person?" IMAX set out to recognize young film makers for touching the nerve of pressing environmental, social, and technological issues. For a young film maker like Tim Glover this piece of recognition comes with a sweet $2,500 bonus toward his next film and an all-expense paid trip to Hollywood to tour the IMAX offices.

We already had our bags packed to return to Detroit when we managed to steal a mere few seconds to touch base with Tim and ask him if we could interview him after we had returned home. He was as gracious as he was enthusiastic to share his thoughts with us.

J.G. Barnes (TMS): What was going through your head when you found out N-Touch was the winner of the IMAX Big Picture In Focus Award?

Tim Glover: I was driving in my car packed full of my crew, heading for Savannah to shoot before the hurricane, and I get an email saying "this is IMAX corporate..." I hand my phone to my DP and asked him to read it to me, and he's was silent for a good 5 minutes, just rereading the email. I literally thought he was playing a joke on me. Shortly, we pulled over and I read it for myself and realized it wasn't a joke.

JGB: What was the spark that gave you the idea for N-Touch?

The actual technology and idea of N-Touch was thought of by a former college professor of mine, Jason Kesler, a while ago. It was only a year ago I cracked the narrative structure of the film. One night after playing around on Tinder I thought, "Man how fake is this? Someone is putting up those best pics of themselves, a bio, some likes, but you really don't know a person." Then I thought well what if you could? How would social circles form if you could know everything about someone with the shake of a hand? This technology could derive humanity of its spontaneity.

JGB: Are you going to be revisiting the N-Touch universe soon? If so, how would you want to expand on the idea?

Ironically, I was just thinking about jumping back into it. I don't think a two hour film will really give people an idea of how different the world would be with this technology. So, I'm planning to expand N-Touch into an 8-10 episode hour long series and possibly shoot the pilot soon. I'm already in talks with Jason and a few other writer friends about doing these separate episodes that take place in the same universe. An episode about religion, high schools, dreams/memories, hackers all these things are interesting subjects to tackle. Essentially, I want this show/idea to be a sandbox where writers can have fun within the parameters of the world. 

JGB: What other kinds of stories are you working on right now?

Wrapping up my latest short which is another sci-fi, but I'm interested in telling all kinds of stories. I really want to tap into an indie drama soon, a la Whiplash, Shame, Enemy, or Before I Disappear

JGB: Being from Atlanta, in what ways has your hometown inspired your passions?

TG: The setting of Atlanta is so versatile. There are woods, parks, downtown cities, suburbia, all here. I often hated that a lot of my early films, took place in the woods. I always thought "Well, if I grew up in New York it would be all skyscrapers and buildings." So as I venture into more filmmaking I'm finding real gems as far as locations go in Atlanta.

JGB: If you had a $250 million budget, what epic story would you tell?

TG: I honestly don't think I need $250 million to tell an epic story. I'm a backyard filmmaker. I make do with what I have. I'm not even too keen on adapting things but there's this comic I'm reading called Nowhere Men, I'd really love to do that. I think it would be a fun new world for people to explore visually. It's actually inspiration for my latest short.

JGB: If given the opportunity to work with any actor or actress, who would it be?

Michael Fassbender or Rinko Kikuchi

JGB: Which recent sci-fi films that you've seen had the biggest impact on you and which ones are you looking forward to?

Midnight Special and Ex Machina are the most impressionistic in the last few years. These are films much like what I tried to do with N-Touch where the sci-fi is the foil to the story, but it takes a backseat to the importance that lies in the characters and story itself. I'm really looking forward to Arrival, GotG Vol. 2, and the next Alien film.

JGB: What are you watching? What are you listening to? And what are you playing?

TG: [Watching] Westworld, Shameless, Luke Cage, and Atlanta. [Listening to]
Band of Skulls. All four of their albums are masterpieces. No need to press the "skip" button. I don't play much since I'm so busy filming and working, but I do want to play the latest Tomb Raider for PS4 and Spider-Man even though they aren't releasing it until Christmas 2017 :(

JGB: If someone wanted to support your films, how best would they do that?

TG: Give me money (laughs). I mean I'm already making these films with little to nothing.  Me and my crew own all of our equipment, but we could always use more. With funding I could get my films in more festivals or more screens. Submission fees pile up after a while.

JGB: Thank you so much for sharing your time with The Movie Sleuth! Let me know if you ever visit the Detroit area. I'd love to catch up with you.

No problem. Will do, man. Thanks.

Visit Tim's website, get a taste of what he's made, and get in touch.