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Get to know Joel Forssell

Updated: Jun 14, 2021

It’s time for yet another interview with one of our members in our team. We recently launched a new series on that spotlights the inner circle of our company.

Other interviews so far:

Joel Forssell is an accomplished writer and composer who has written both feature films and episodes for TV-series. As a composer he has had reoccurring collaborations with our CEO (Simon Kölle) on a wide variety of musical ventures. Joel recently joined Tulpa Creatives as our Story Editor. His role includes working hands on with our World Creators and Script Writers. His ambition is to help manage and lead multiple successful projects here at Tulpa and to help develop our methods while also continuing to work as a creative in his own right.

The interview was made with Joel in April 2020.

What made you pursue working creatively within the film, tv and/or gaming world?

I’ve always been into creating worlds and then filling these worlds with stories. Early on I had my notebooks filled with maps, made up history events, different creatures and people. This led me into exploring the structures and possibilities inherent in storytelling itself.

In 2-3 sentences who are you?

A tinkerer who truly enjoys to delve into the nitty-gritty details and who wants to explore different ways of telling a story, to find new ways of immersion. Outside that I enjoy trying new things and learn from those around me.

What motivates you and why do you work creatively?

I’m constantly pulled towards finding new creative endeavours that can consume my attention and keep me from monotony. Those few moments when I find pause, my mind will usually invent a project and then I have very little choice but to explore it.

Tell us one memory from your previous work that still to this day inspires you.

Who has the time to form memories while creating? Nah, truly I think of all the times when I and those I’ve worked with are up against the clock, deadlines closing in, chunks of storypoints to be solved and still, we find ourselves on the other side. Script in hand, finished. Those moment still amazes me and keeps me confident that I atleast have an idea of what I’m doing.

What’s Tulpa Creatives for you?

A totally new mindset and way of creating stories, which I hope will change the whole landscape of storytelling. Working more creativly with audience engagement and long term immersion while still caring for their unique voice.

What’s your dream?

Too many to write down. But hopefully to create stories that will affect and grab people, changing their perspective or giving them an experience that will stick with them for a long time to come. An experience they might think fondly of.

How do you see yourself?

As a reflective over-thinker and perfectionist that has painstakingly taught himself to differentiate between when to perfect and when to move forward.

What’s your biggest strengths/assets?

My capacity to develop concepts and take them that extra few steps, making good into great.

Name a few movies and/or TV-series that inspired you a lot in your life.

The Lion King, Requiem for a Dream, Interstellar, Spirited Away, Drive and many more.

Do you have any advice for young filmmakers out there?

Basically just continue to do it, make a lot and try to learn from it. Nothing revolutionary but the simple fact that my journey is not your journey and the only way you’ll now what your journey is and where it may take you is to just keep walking forward.

Which filmmakers have influenced you the most?

Christopher Nolan, Scorsese, Vince Gilligan, Aronofsky..(at least those on top of my mind)

If you got the opportunity to remake a movie or TV-series, which one would you go for?

I don’t really know..maybe…Star Wars, yeah why not, let's go with that. It’s not incredibly bad but I just believe the whole thing could be made with much more nuance. I’d try to do it all very differently, I suppose it might not end up as Star Wars in the end, write more layers into the characters, make more use of all the interesting themes present; war, persecution, identity, mysterious religions, the vast space, crazy- jedi-powertrips etc. all stacked with over-the-top-action.

Working with a project, is it harder to get started or to keep going?

Keep going, at that specific point, it’s when you get to where your great idea has been stretched to a point where you start questioning if the concept actually is strong enough to carry all the way, is it interesting enough? When you’re starting to see all the wrinkles and flaws and you must try reconnecting to that initial spark or you’ll just find yourself forcing it.

To just do the work, get through it and when you’re on the other side you can judge. Don’t try to save it by constantly adding on that extra details, it’ll only obscure your vision. That’s a lesson you just have to experience, it can’t be taught, you just do it enough until you know the journey well enough to have confidence that it’ll work out in the end (hopefully).

Mention one thing you think would make the film/tv/gaming industry better, what would it be?

More cross-content and crazy collaborations, stories carried across platforms, more ways of the community to contribute and be part and definitely less “safe betting” and trying to beat a dead horse by re-making what’s already been done to death


What are you working on right now within Tulpa Creatives (april 2020)?

Currently helping to develop three projects, all in quite different phases. Working with writers to build great stories and world builders to create colourful deep worlds for these stories to live in. I guess that I’ve somehow found my way back to carrying notebooks filled with stories and maps but now it’s my job.


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