A few years ago, when Justin, Brian and I were cranking out one (less than superb but ultimately fun and enjoyable) short film after the next, I caught a documentary on IFC that a guy made about his own journey to make a film.
Much like many wanna-be filmmakers, including us at one time, he had documented the making of his movie, probably with some thought of including a behind-the-scenes extra on the DVDs he would give out to friends and family. Because who wouldn’t want to watch a crappy 15 minute documentary about what it took to make an even crappier feature?
On that note, my sincerest thanks to all our friends and family for suffering through some of our past cinematic endeavors with a smile. We had a lot of fun making them, and we would eventually get better, but damn…those early films are almost painful to watch now.
But in this one case…the documentary extra became a much better movie than the film it was documenting. The actual film project was a disaster. Everything that could go wrong did. The guy made the biggest rookie filmmaker mistake in the book. He enlisted friends to be his actors and crew and as a result, he had to do almost all the lighting, shooting, sound work and editing himself. Not a fun way to make a film. I felt for this guy. I had been in those shoes. I had made these same mistakes in the past. Doing everything yourself, particularly when it is supposed to be a team effort, will suck the fun out of a project. Even more so, when your supposed “crew” are doing nothing more than taking up space on whatever nearby furniture they can find and begging to take a break for lunch. Right. Because I’m sure that you worked up quite the appetite while taking that 45 minute nap. Continue reading →