Last year, Australian singer Sia released a trilogy of some of the most innovative and radical pop videos ever. Each video (“Chandelier”, “Elastic Heart” and “Big Girls Cry”) starred reality show Dance Moms prodigy Maddie Ziegler, and each explored ideas of heartbreak, struggle and despair with performance art that hit you right in the gut.
And now, just six months later, Sia has announced that she has written, and will direct, a feature film titled Sister, which is based on a one-page short story she wrote eight years ago. The film will also star dance muse and collaborator Maddie Ziegler.
Addressing the panel during a Q&A at international film festival Venice Days, Sia said: "I was too embarrassed to tell anyone I wanted to make a movie because I thought it would be seen as a vanity project because I was a singer... And then last year, after I made the 'Chandelier' video, I realized that I was pretty good at directing, so I felt a little bit braver."
“First, I paid a guy from a juice bar to help me write it, who had gone to film school, and it turned out it wasn’t quite right,” she explained. She then turned to friend and author Dallas Clayton. "He and I spent three and a half weeks just on the sofa, mapping it out."
"For me, the process was basically, I work out the movie. I’ll act it out, I’ll have the dialogue already in my head. I can’t be bothered to learn ‘Final Draft’. I’m not a technical person. Like, when I sing, I just want to sing the melody and write the lyrics. I don’t want to have to do production, which is very technical. I don’t enjoy that. What I do enjoy is the creative process," she said, explaining that Clayton would take their notes and sharpen them up.
The screenplay has since been finalised, so all we have to do now is wait for what will inevitably be incredible (no pressure!)
Watch our own fashion film starring Maddie Ziegler from 2014 below: