My name is Marcus and I’m a grassroots filmmaker from Sydney.
I always knew I wanted to direct a documentary, but I didn’t know what about. One day, I went to dinner at a family friend’s place, Sue Walters’. She has a cochlear implant, and I thought that could be a good story to pursue.
I wrote up a script and we started contacting the people we wanted to interview. Sue was one of them. We also got in touch with another young guy (about my age) who also has a cochlear implant, Jackson Tait, and were fortunate enough to interview Professor Bill Gibson, who is one of the pioneers of the cochlear implant. He operated on Sue when she lost her hearing.
Each interview went for roughly an hour and then, when it came to the editing stage, we had to cut all the footage from each interview down to about three minutes each because the full film was meant to be ten minutes long.
Cutting out the interviews was incredibly difficult. Me and my editor spent days at Uni trying to figure out what to cut and what to keep. How do you define what’s important?
From there, we came up with what I think is a rather nice documentary called Hear Me Out. The documentary describes the true‑life events of people who have cochlear implants, as well as some enlightening advice that they give towards the hearing community – people like myself who didn’t know anything about what it would be like to be deaf.
I think that’s what I wanted to explore during the documentary. I wanted to showcase what it is like to be deaf, and, most importantly, get some advice from someone who is deaf on how to improve communication between hard of hearing people and hearing people.