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|This film won a Gold Standard award.|
More than 25 years ago I met the London folksinger and artist Brian Higbee for the first time. We had a nice chat. We discovered that we married on exactly the same day in 1967. Both Brian and my wife Vera were born on halloween "Maybe we'll be friends for life," Brian said. Since then our ties of friendship have never been broken.
Brian Higbee and his wife moved to Kent, the garden of England. They lived there for more than 30 years, but suddenly Brian told me that he and his wife would move to Devon, to the distant south-west of England, "far from the madding crowd". That was very strange. The popular Kentish entertainer would leave all his friends ! I thought why not make a film about my best friend's emotions? That would be a good story.
Until You Smile is a "musical" in which Brian Higbee tells his life and sings songs like "My Daddy and Me", "Those were the Days", "Outward Bound" and "Until You Smile". Each song is essential for the story of the film. At home I still had film shots taken in all those years of friendship.
In Devon I had one big problem : there was a heavy wind and I couldn't stay there for many days. So I used a sound mixer and tried to soften or eliminate the gusts of wind. In the period of editing I often sent Brian Higbee a rough copy of my film. I wanted to be sure that he would be happy. At the end of this year he will be in Belgium to put up an exhibition of his hand-coloured etchings and to sing some of his folksongs and evergreens by candlelight and then of course his film will be screened, his film Until You Smile.
- Willy Van der Linden March 2006