SMALL TIME OBSESSION was shot over five weeks at locations in and around
South London from South Kensington to Balham to Catford to Woolwich. "I
wanted to shoot the London I knew as a little boy," explains Piotr.
"I love London because it is so diverse. I've lived here all my life
and there are still loads of places I haven't seen."
"I wanted to tell a small story in a big way, similar to the way
Francis Coppola did with THE OUTSIDERS. Truly cinematic films create worlds
that are larger than life regardless of the subject matter and I wanted
to do that with the world I grew up in."
SMALL TIME OBSESSION is a violent film but there is no choreographed gun-play
or action scenes in that sense. Piotr deliberately avoided the use of
guns to make it more realistic. "The UK doesn't have a gun culture
in the way the US does and London gangsters don't generally go around
shooting each other, they don't need to. They sort things out with their
own muscle and when you get hit with a baseball bat - you don't get up".
SMALL TIME OBSESSION features an ensemble cast of an experienced but largely
unknown actors and writer/director Piotr Szkopiak believes this works
to the film's advantage. "This is a film about a group of friends
who have known each other since childhood in a community that most people
are not familiar with," he explains. "As a result, I think the
lack of any easily recognisable actors helps to make those relationships
The only time Piotr really wanted to use a known actor was for the character
of Mr Page and was fortunate enough to cast Andrew Tiernan, who had recently
played the villain in FACE, opposite Robert Carlyle and Ray Winstone.
"I always saw SMALL TIME OBSESSION as playing in parallel to films
like THE LONG GOOD FRIDAY but only overlapping during the scenes with
Mr Page," Piotr explains. "I thought that by using a known actor,
this would help contrast the world he inhabited with that of Michael and
He continues, "To me, SMALL TIME OBSESSION is about naivete in the
face of reality, with one aspect being that a lot of people like to play
the gangster and think they will never get hurt. I wanted to show just
how easily things can get out of hand."