Marcus Aubin is a driven and passionate filmmaker with over 5 years of experience in the industry. He enjoys telling stories about perseverance, self-discovery, relationships, human connection, and perilous endeavors. He’s had many opportunities to direct numerous narratives, music videos, vignettes, and more which have screened at film festivals across the globe including Diversity in Cannes, Cleveland International, NFFTY, and DC Shorts. He’s made quite an impression in the Chicago art culture and music industry. When a project is cooking his skills and ideas are wanted. Marcus Angelo Aubin built an independent, freelanced production company at the beginning of 2019. With every project, MAA aims to tell emotionally moving stories that send a message, whether it be a clear-cut memo or a subtle expression. As they continue expanding their network and body of work, they will always strive for a high level of professionalism and efficiency in every facet of their productions. He’s currently based out of Chicago where he freelance as a director and editor. Marcus is currently editing a multi-episode documentary series while also riding the festival wave on several new creative films. His future goals include writing a feature film, continuing to direct work from other writers, and improving his skills in post-production and collaboration. Make sure to follow and check out the short films that are posted below his interview. If you need an outstanding visualizer, Marcus Aubin is your artist.
How would you describe yourself and your background?
I am a friendly, dedicated, award-winning filmmaker with a driven work ethic and over 6 years of experience in the film industry. I graduated from DePaul University in 2019 and have directed/edited a variety of projects, including a feature film, short films, documentaries, and music videos.
Who would you say are your biggest inspirations within the industry?
I’m really into Harmony Korine right now. I’d highly recommend checking out his works: Gummo, Mister Lonely, The Beach Bum, and definitely Spring Breakers, to name a few.
When did you want to become a film director? What was the moment you wanted to take the leap in this lifestyle? (movie/event/set/artist/etc..)
I’ve wanted to be a film director for as long as I can remember. My Ma says it’s a God-given passion.
What are your main challenges as an artist?
Self-expression is a huge component of art. Sometimes it’s hard to find the right way to express yourself. For me, it has been an ongoing challenge for the past couple of years, especially as I’ve branched away from my own writing to directing screenplays from other writers. It’s felt like a tug-of-war between finding a “style” for yourself, but also not being too exclusive to one mode of expression. That is sort of the beauty in being a filmmaker though; you can take risks and expand with little consequence because it is an art-form just like any painting in a museum.
You’re a film director for MAA Films – an independent film production. What does MAA stand for and when did you establish this business?
MAA stands for Marcus Angelo Aubin, my full name. I started MAA Films, LLC on January 1st, 2019.
Tell us about your past work that you’ve done for clients and friends.
Past work for clients and friends includes a variety of promotional work, corporate interviews, short advertisements/spots, and more. These projects pay the bills, but I do a good job of finding clients that align with my ideals and that I’m actually interested in. Some of my favorite work this past year though, has come from my collaboration with Alex Kislov on the music video for his original track, “Shining”. We devised some creative looks that were executed tremendously by my DP/VFX Artist, Ryan Croft. It was an incredibly fun experience and I enjoyed basically every part about it.
You’re currently working with us on a project called GLTV. How has working with the team virtually been?
Good Looks TV has been a blast so far! Loving the creative and energetic vibes that the team puts out. It’s truly radiant and even though our first episode had some technical difficulties, we still had a wholesome experience, and that’s what the world needs right now.
What is your proudest moment so far? (scene/blogged/filmed/etc..)
Two moments stick out: My feature film, Sun King, won the ‘Best Illinois Feature Film’ award at Beloit Internation Film Festival on February 29th this past year, which is extra special because of the loop-year date. This was also the first major award I’ve received as a filmmaker, making it pretty sweet to call myself “award-winning” above ;)… Second, my film Minstrel vs. Puppet, which has already had an ongoing, successful film festival campaign, screened to an intimate audience at UIC in February as well. This screening was hosted by the Black Graduate Student Association and sparked very inspiring dialogue from the audience afterward regarding topics of social inequality, injustice, prejudice, and more. Evoking important, genuine conversation as a direct response to a piece I directed was fulfilling in an entirely new way.
What are your top 3 favorite movies? (could be yours or any films)
This list constantly changes but right now it goes 1. Parasite 2. Spring Breakers 3. Good Time
If you were stuck in an elevator, what album/record would you have playing to keep you sane?
Easy. ‘Paspatou’ by Parra for Cuva
If you had to do something else (outside of the film industry), what would it be?
I love playing sports and I am actually learning how to DJ. I’d love to eventually play in the Chicago clubs!
What’s your favorite restaurant in Chicago?
El Milagro on 26th Street.
What’s your current favorite show (tv/netflix/etc…) worth binging?
I’m currently watching Star Wars: The Clone Wars because I’m a nerd at heart (and it’s the best Star Wars out there). I also binged Euphoria earlier this quarantine, which I thought was pretty solid, but I’m not the biggest fan of narrated shows.
What is a quote or phrase that you try to live by? Why?
“I am grateful” is what I’ve been living by for a long time now…
Tell us something that you’re doing during quarantine.
I am giving fair time to a variety of personal activities, such as DJing, cooking, working out/exercising, reading, meditating, and more.
Tell us something that you’ve been working on?
I am working on finalizing my latest short film, Binate, which is a hybrid between music video – dance video – narrative short. It is my most personal piece yet and filmed on my favorite camera, the D16 Digital Bolex.
Is there anything else you would like to add?
Please check out my website – marcusaubin.com. As an artist, I’m struggling a bit during these challenging financial times. I’m open to any sort of collaboration or work opportunity right now. I’ve found creative ways to try home/pre-recorded footage into something special for clients thus far, but need more work to stay afloat. Any help would be tremendously appreciated. Cheers, and stay healthy!