CIFF Opening Night Film Is a 'Very Happy-Go-Lucky Little Movie'

March 19, 2014, 9:00 AM   |   posted by Lara Klaber in Filmmakers

mckayjohndirectornotanotherhappyending.jpg

Scottish Director and Writer John McKay recently returned to Glasgow after living in London for 20 years. He loves the city. And that’s where his latest film is set.

“I’d wanted to make a movie in Glasgow for a long time,” McKay says. Once he read David Solomons’ “kind of charming” script, he knew the time was right. “I fell for it, and three years later, I’d made the movie.”

His movie, “Not Another Happy Ending,” opens the 38th Cleveland International Film Festival on a light note.

“It’s just a very happy-go-lucky little movie,” explains McKay. “It’s not complicated or deep. It’s just kinda daffy and fun, and we hope it gets CIFF off to a great start.”

The story is about a writer, Jane, played by Karen Gillan, with writer’s block. After a successful first novel and a new romance, she’s too happy to finish her next novel, which she must do to fulfill her contract. Does a writer have to be miserable to be creative? Her publisher, French actor Stanley Weber, tries to dampen her spirits, but ends up falling in love with her. Not necessarily a story specific to Scotland, but one that could happen anywhere.

At one point, though, producer Claire Mundell discussed with McKay whether to “take this great script, charming, upbeat, witty, fun and put it in New York or Chicago because it would probably get financed quicker,” Mundell tells ReelScotland, a publication with news and reviews of Scottish films.

But the two Scots stuck to their guns and kept the film in Glasgow to showcase the city—its “upbeat, contemporary, witty, European, dynamic and creative side,” Mundell says. Other Scottish films focus on the gritty and grim side of Glasgow.

McKay knew that making an independent film “about young people in urban locations who are having misadventures in love and life” had broader appeal.

In fact, the director sees similarities in Glasgow and Cleveland—both, he notes,
have an industrial past and a “newfound funky present day.” His film portrays the unique character of the city and a place where the personalities in the story shine through.

Gillan, a “six-foot daffy redhead,” has been compared to American actress Diane Keaton. And it just so happens that McKay is a Woody Allen fan.

“I have to admit I love those movies from the late ’70s, where Woody and Diane would just stroll around Manhattan being neurotic,” he says. “They’re so funny and perfect.”

Although he says the characters in his film “can’t really compare” with Allen and Keaton, he does agree that Gillan has “an amazingly off-centre dress sense,” similar to Keaton’s Annie Hall character.

Anne M. DiTeodoro

Related Screenings:
03/19/14 @ 7:00 PM – Not Another Happy Ending

Download The Daily

Check out the latest festival highlights and goings on in the print edition of The Daily.

View Now

CIFF Tweets

Filmmakers, you still have time to hit our first #CIFF39 Call For Entries deadline (this Sunday, 8/31)! Full info: http://t.co/voVqQTNYpS

about 8 hours ago   .   Reply   .   Retweet   .   Favorite

CIFF Facebook Posts

No plans tonight? We've got you covered! Check out #CIFF38 alum To Be Takei at the Cedar Lee Theatre at 7:30 p.m. (one screening only!). Full info here: http://bit.ly/1pGEvSe

2 days ago   .   Link

CIFF on YouTube All Videos

Play

Between Two Films.

Play

CIFF 38 Daily Buzz Day 13 Wrap Up

Play

Meet the Filmmaker with Michele Josue, Judy & Dennis Shepard from "Matt Shepard is a Friend of Mine"

Become A CIFF Member >

Become A CIFF Member

We have five different levels of membership to choose from, so find the one that best fits your film appetite!

38th CIFF Award Winners >

38th CIFF Award Winners

Look through the complete list of award winners from the 38th CIFF!

Sign up for our email newsletter

go
  • facebook
  • twitter
  • instagram
  • youtube
  • flickr
  • foursquare
  • iphone
  • android