Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Film Addiction!


A couple writings back I wrote that if you thought getting your first feature off the ground is hard try your second. Of all the things I've learned you would think that maybe I wouldn't want to begin another project, but I'm afraid it doesn't work like that. When I finally finished "Deadly Obsessions" I thought okay it's done. For years I've wanted to do my own feature and it drove me, but it wasn't the idea of making a movie that I obsessed on. No it was of being a filmmaker. The landscape has changed in the coming years, and it's gotten easier for someone to pick up a camera and think of shooting his or her own film. Digital video has leveled the playing field, and there are now tools available for everyone to use for the creation of their feature. I always wonder what Cassavetes would have thought of DV. His filmmaking was raw, and visceral. Cassavetes knew the technical side of filmmaking, and he didn't care. He broke all the rules, and if anything his palette were his actors. By doing my film I got to taste that. How an actor can change a meaning of a word or phrase just by saying it differently. Working with actors is where it's at. You take an idea on a page and the actors then breath life into it. I regret not spending more time with my actors, and running lines. The script would've been a lot better with more of their input, but on your first feature you just want to get it done. The clock is ticking, and every moment you're not shooting feels like you'll never get it done and in the can. Someone snapped the following picture of me while I was pointing out something to one of my actors. It's a good shot and I actually like it, but I wish I had more of those moments.

What I learned from doing "Deadly Obsessions" was that it wasn't about the aura of being a filmmaker, but it was about the work. One of my leads said that to another actor, and I totally agree with them. I may not make a fortune on these films, and I may not be as successful as Cassavetes, but in the end it will be about the work. The stories keep coming, and it's hard to fit them into workable projects with the limited resources I posses. My limitations are what will inspire me to overcome them, and I'll work with what I have. Right now I have no choice. I've always believed that great art comes from artists who have nothing else to loose. When the artist finds him or herselfs back against the wall it's then that he or she does his or her best work. Most art that is memorable has come from artists who have had to overcome certain challenges. I'm still trying to find my voice, but I haven't given up. Is it harder now then it was? It will always be hard, but nothing worth doing is easy.

What posses me to write this I can't say. I know there are a lot of talented artists out there doing their thing. Some will succeed others won't, but in the end it's about being true to yourself and being happy with the person who stares back at you in the mirror. In the end it's all that we have. Be happy & creative. Light a fire!

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