Alumna Natalya Firdaus Khan’s film ‘Little Bear’

The Official Promotional Trailer for the film ‘Little Bear’ is now ready for viewing!

The director of this movie is none other than our Alumna Natalya Firdaus Khan, from the GIS Class of 2017. Produced by Lara Blue Crockart, with cinematography by Joey Slocombe and written by Charlie Matheson, you can check out the official trailer here.

Earlier this month, we chatted to Natalya about the film, as well as her memories of her time at GIS.


Natalya, what is ‘Little Bear’ about?

‘Little Bear’ is a film that I am directing for my final year in university. The film is a 10 minute psychological horror/thriller film, which follows Zoe, a young deaf girl, and her unstable mental state. The tense journey through Zoe’s deteriorated mind, amplified by the macabre and murderous narrative, will have you at the edge of your seats!


Where are you at in the film-making process?

My crew and I are still casting for the film at the moment. We start shooting on the 6th of March. I am counting down the days until I get to start working on set and actually directing this film!

To be honest, I have never directed a psychological horror/thriller before, which does scare me a little. However, I know that by directing this film, it will not only open many doors for me in the future but will also allow me to gain a new set of skills that will come in handy when I start working in the professional world – such as working with child actors.

We are aiming to submit our film ‘Little Bear’ to a variety of different film festivals in London.


What have you been up to since leaving GIS, Natalya?

After my final year in GIS, I did my foundation year in Royal Holloway University Of London, majoring in Media Arts. After my foundation year, I got accepted into the undergraduate programme that I applied for (Film, TV and Digital Production) and am now in my third year of the programme.

Over the years, I have also been working on my own photography projects. Last year, 10 of my photography pieces were sold in the One Heart Foundation Malaysia Charity Fundraiser auction – my very first auction! – and raised RM 4,000 in total . I am now currently working very hard on my own gallery exhibitions, which will hopefully be showcased in both Kuala Lumpur and London. To view some of my work, please do have a look at my photography page on Instagram: @natalyafk_photography.

Also, for my final year dissertation, I created an entire exhibition/installation based on human emotions. This July, I am proud that it has been chosen to be showcased again in the university’s exhibition space for public viewing at Royal Holloway University Of London.


What would be your advice to current GIS students who would are interested in pursuing photography and/or film-making?

My advice would be to always believe in yourself. Art is subjective – so not everyone will like your work. Art is also deeply personal; do not let anyone tell you that your artwork is wrong.

There will be people along the way who try to demotivate you or tear you down because they lack appreciation for your art. In the end, everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but you must always have faith in yourself and in your work. Do not give up and always keep pushing yourself to step over your boundaries when it comes to creative work. Have fun and put your heart into what you do!


Natalya, do you have any messages for your family, friends or teachers at GIS?

I’d like to thank my parents and my sister for believing in me and supporting what I want to do in life. There has not been a day where they have tried to dissuade me from following my dreams. They have supported me in ways I could not possibly thank them enough for.

I would also like to thank my two best friends, Linda Saint-Pere and Palak Singh. These two girls have been there for me through thick and thin. Since our GIS days, they have always been hugely supportive of everything I do. I appreciate the bond that I have developed with them over the years, and am grateful to have met them in GIS.

Finally, a huge thank you must go to my Photography teacher at GIS Mr Bannister. He taught me how to appreciate the art of photography/digital media and how it allows me to capture the essence of a person’s soul in a still image. He believed in my work more than anyone else. I am extremely grateful to him for pushing me out of my comfort zone and teaching me how to grip onto my originality when creating a piece of art. His teachings have stuck with me until today and I am extremely grateful to have had him as my photography teacher & mentor.

To track the progress of Natalya’s film or to donate to support it, follow her project on Instagram (@littlebearrhulfilm) and/or on Facebook (Little Bear Film)!