About me

Tom_OverMij_

My passion is directing and producing films. My intention is to qualify myself so that in future I can be a representative for the Dutch deaf-community and can give the deaf a ‘voice’ through images. Also I can let the deaf and the hearing learn something about each other through films.

Film plays a big part in my life because I can show emotions and feelings through film. From a very young age I have been writing stories and fantasize a great deal. Wherever I am, I always try to turn impressions and experiences into filmimages. I am constantly thinking of films, making films, watching films, and reading about films. My ambition is to direct a feature-length movie, I already have the scenario, but I’ll keep that for later.

I tried out for the entrance exam for the Dutch Film and Television Academy (DFTA) three times. The number of admissions for this course is limited and the selection is very strict.

At every entrance exam, I mentioned that I am deaf. I completed a course in Directing, Camera, and Editing at the Open Studio in Amsterdam. This is only a basic course that lots of people take to prepare for the entrance exam at the DFTA. At first the people there also rejected me for being deaf. During the course, this turned out not to be a problem, though, partly because there was (almost) always an interpreter present.

After getting over the disappointment of being rejected by the DFTA, I started orienting on other possibilities of developing myself. A friendly, hearing filmdirector told me not to give up, because there are a thousand roads that lead to Rome. I believe in that, too. I know I have to persevere.

During my search, I discovered The New York Film Academy, a renowned education.

I contacted the New York Film Academy and for them, it was no problem at all that I am deaf, on the contrary, they reacted enthusiastically. While I was being rejected in the Netherlands time after time, it seems like there I am being welcomed with open arms. I consider this an amazing ‘2nd chance’, especially because the quality of the education is so high.

I went off to study at the NYFA, New York Film Academy. It was a unique experience. I directed the short documentary „ A Deaf Firefighter” there. Click on „my work” to watch it.

OverMij_Banner_Firefighter

Afterwards I worked with my colleague Willy Lindwer (my tutor, Emmy Award Winner). Our documentary „Anna’s Silent Struggle” became a big success. This documentary was shown at several film festivals. This documentary was also shown on TV several times. Wily Lindwer is the producer and co-director together with me of this documentary „Anna’s Silent Struggle”.

Tom_Willy

Now I am very busy with my new documentary project. I will be working together with Simonka de Jong and IDTV on this project.