Sunday, 19 August 2012

Procrasti-blogging + an update on our short film...

 I have reviews I could be writing here instead, but I feel like sharing/ranting/complaining/venting.

 I never told you all the title for our short, did I? Well, it's name is Weeding In. In brief, it's about a young couple in their mid-twenties, Jem (Jeremy) and Laura, and Jem's mother, Sue. Jem and Laura are in over their heads when, in an opportune moment, they come across a lot of money and take it and run. Now they're broke again, and looking for another quick fix. They visit Sue's house, but Laura has her suspicions. Sue is not  quite the caring, doting mother that she seems...

   I'm terrible at plot summaries, and I don't want to give too much away. At this point in time, we're not sure if we'll be entering the film in festivals first, or just releasing it online. We had a long day of auditions today, and shooting begins in three and a bit weeks....three weeks and four days....excuse me while I hyperventilate.

   It seems terribly close, and at times I wish we were shooting later, but this is our final year project for uni, and we will have a lot more time in post-production compared to other groups. Talking about a script, and doing re-writes (and believe me, this script has gone through some pretty drastic ones), and saying 'Wouldn't this look cool?' or 'We should film somewhere like this!' is one thing - actually putting plans into action is another. For instance, I casually mentioned that my Uncle and Aunts house would be a pretty good interior location. Then last week we realised 'Shit, we really need to do this now.' So I had to call my Uncle (my Aunt is overseas) and ask him. One of the most nerve-wracking things ever, and I think my Uncle's great. But asking someone whether it's okay for a film crew to traipse through their house for a few days is something entirely, and I'd understand perfectly if he said no. Thankfully for us, he said yes. Test shoot tomorrow night, and if all else fails, my house is the back up (the main reason my house isn't ideal however, is that I live on the complete opposite side of the city to nearly everyone else at uni. This usually means I'm the one doing the travelling).

   The script also called for Laura to drive a beaten up VW Beatle. By pure luck, I happen to know someone who has one. She's a learner driver, so she can only get the car to us on weekends with a supervising driver, but thankfully it's only one scene in the car. Should be fine. The thing is, there are at least five locations. Kitchen/dining interior; street exterior; Laura's room; Beach; Bathroom (preferably with bath). Oh, and Jem's bedroom, and his brother Brandon's room (although we only see a brief glimpse of that one).

   I'm a little stressed. I'm not going to lie, I even feel a little like crying. The problem isn't making the film, it's the fact that we're making them in very small teams and the fact that I have two other courses that require major attention. I don't even have a steady job at the moment. Where I work, if there is a sound job I get called in. No sound job, no work, and there aren't that many sound jobs right now. So all I have to worry about is a five thousand word research essay and a personal networking report and organising a seminar and putting together a showreel and CV... If I could just pick one course to do, I'd be fine. If I could just be worrying about the short film, that'd be great. I'd love to devote all my time to networking with industry professionals. My research essay really interests me. I don't understand why this semester seems to be trying to break our backs with work. And I have it easy.

   I've always identified with something Truffaut's character says in Day for Night (one of my favourite films):

"Making a film is like a stagecoach ride in the old west. When you start, you are hoping for a pleasant trip. By the halfway point, you just hope to survive."

Right now, I'm just hoping to survive this! It's all about the deadlines, isn't it? That's what makes it horrible. During the rest of the semester, this blog may be filled with some huge gaps as my time is consumed. I'm sure there's something productive I could be doing right now (such as a re-draft of the script. As I was typing this, we literally got sent the newest draft and we need the script somewhere between it, and the last one. Working with a separate writer has it's benefits and it's downsides too). I'm too tired, and too worked up right now though. This is a bit of a shame. Objectively, my day hasn't been that bad. It's just one of those moods.

12 comments:

  1. I remember this time well Ruth. I'm not sure how I managed to graduate from all the multi-tasking. Prioritising is easy enough to suggest but doing it? Much harder.

    I would say try to enjoy the production as much as possible, I've been five years between productions myself and I miss it greatly.

    You'll do just fine, you've been practicing for the pressure of this semester since you started the degree afterall.

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    1. Thanks Toby :) I feel much better today - a major combination of stress and lack of sleep brought on this post. We had our test shoot this evening (testing lights, we have one night scene) but the rest take place during the day so it shouldn't be too hard!
      I just thank god I have one course that literally only requires me to submit one journal entry (and it can be in dotpoint form - how easy is that?!)

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  2. Good luck with all of that Ruth! Working with a group of people on a script can be both good and bad. In my last semester, I was in a group of three, and we decided to do a short film for a production course. I wrote the first draft of the script, which we had already discussed. That draft was 11 pages. After we shot the first act, we discovered we had too much to shoot. We ended up scrapping the last two acts and changing the story. So, using the footage we'd already shot, we ended up with a 4 page script. It can be nerve-racking for sure. :)

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    1. Thanks Josh!
      Oh my god, that sounds terrifying! I'm glad it all worked out for you though.

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  3. Stick with it and keep moving. You’ve got a lot going on, and it certainly doesn’t sound easy, but it also sounds like it has to get done. When I’ve got a lot happening, I acknowledge that I have a lot happening, and let myself freak the fuck out for a spell if need be. Who does it hurt, you know?

    You’re a young, talented young woman. Take everything as it comes, chill, and you’ll be cool. Eventually, you’ll look back, laugh, and be cool.

    Can’t wait to see Weeding In.

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    1. Thanks Alex, you have no idea how much that helps! I think this post was my letting myself 'freak the fuck out'. I've always thought of myself as really positive.
      We've got a location (thank god for my uncle and aunt!), we have actors to choose from, we have dates. Long day, it just got to me. We had a really positive meeting with our tutor/supervisor today, she seemed really pleased.
      I can't wait to look back and laugh at this. It's inspired me to start writing again myself, really!

      I can't wait to show it to you!

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  4. Your short film sounds pretty interesting, I like the idea! Good luck with the shoot and I hope everything will be great in the end!

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    1. Thanks Diana, I'm hoping it will. We have our location sorted, and some good actors to choose from. It'll be fine!

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  5. Procrasti-blogging! I like that! Best of luck with your film project, Ruth, that sounds like a cool gig. Hope you could share your final product once it's done :)

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    1. Thanks Ruth, I've calmed down heaps since last week, haha. I'm not alone :P

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  6. Looking forward to your short film, Ruth!

    And I'm also planning on renting Day for Night soon.

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    1. Thanks Sam :) Hopefully it'll be out sometime October/November (if we put it online rather than put it in festivals).

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