Life Via Rail tells the story of Jason Shron, a train enthusiast from Canada who abandoned a prestigious phD program to pursue his dream of a career in the model train industry. Currently Jason is the CEO of Rapido Trains, one of Canada’s largest model train manufacturers.
(Screens at #ocanfilmfest2019 on Nov 2 at 2:30pm – details & tickets)
Jonny Micay is a filmmaker and cinematographer from Toronto, Canada. He is incredibly passionate about people and loves to immerse himself in unfamiliar environments. As of now, he has worked professionally in 13 countries around the world. When he isn’t making his own films, Jonny is an avid lighting and grip technician in the Toronto film community.
What inspired your film?
Jason’s commitment to be himself and pursue his dreams no matter how unusual they may seem. Since the age of two he has been obsessed with trains and has worked incredibly hard to find success in such a niche industry. His journey to becoming one of Canada’s most well known model train manufacturers is an example of how far commitment and motivation can take a passionate individual.
What was the biggest challenge in making your film?
Finding time with our subject. Jason is an incredibly busy person. Aside from owning and operating his own company, he is a father of three. Since we could only get so much time with him, we had to be very selective with our shot lists and interview questions. As well, this forced us to find creative solutions, such as animations and motion graphics, for certain scenes we didn’t get the chance to film.
What was the best part of the experience for you?
Finishing the project. Given this was my first documentary, I had no idea what to expect. Though I originally thought this would be a two month project, the film took me three years to make. It was much more difficult than I anticipated and I began to doubt if I would finish it. Persevering through the edit and exporting the final cut was an incredibly gratifying experience.
What advice would you give aspiring filmmakers?
Think less and do more. The more you make, the closer you’ll get to your ambitions. Avoid comparing yourself with others and just worry about your own work. Get out there, make something, repeat, and things will happen for you.
What’s next for you?
Right now, I’m focused entirely on cinematography and am on the lookout for directors to collaborate with. I’m absolutely fascinated by lighting and would love to experiment more with narrative, music videos and branded content. My DP work is available on my site at jonnymicay.com/reel.