Week 1

Making films is hard work. That’s just a fact. We do it anyway, of course, because the hard work is inevitably worth it. We get to enjoy that fuzzy warmth that comes with accomplishment, that ‘I made this‘ sense of satisfaction when you review the final product. This is what I remind myself every day. It is worth it, I promise.

Week one has not gone as smoothly as I had planned. Unforeseen circumstances have an innate knack for blindsiding and throwing spanners in the works of even the most well-oiled machine–I do not run the cleanest operation and, I must admit, this has been a steep learning curve.

Pre-production wasn’t easy in itself, waiting for the go ahead on locations, finding people willing to stay up until ungodly hours to make this happen. We had it in place, though. A crew and a location. We still do to some extent, but we’ve found that its an ever-shifting skeleton crew running on fumes, tea and passion. I cannot thank these people enough for the work they put in during week one, a week where everything seemed like it was crumbling away.

This has been a challenge. I like a challenge, but I like my sanity more and losing our chief DoP for days at a time is never going to be a barrel of laughs. It’s not his fault, and we can carry on in his absence for some of the time. For the days we have him, though, he’s a very busy man.

Then casting issues abound. We have a lead–it’s always good to have a lead–but the gruelling hours makes finding willing volunteers a tricky task, and no budget means that they are just that, volunteers. We have one more shoot between now and needing our only undecided cast-member. They have time to look over the schedule and give us the final yes or no before the whole thing implodes–that’s an exaggeration, though, isn’t it? I really want to say yes, and for now, I’m pretty sure I can. There is always a contingency plan.

Adding these with a period of change and uncertainty in my personal life, I must admit to getting a little overwhelmed at times. Things have taken a little longer to get done than I had anticipated–and that’s terrifying.

The issues are mostly resolved now, and I’m cautiously optimistic that we’ve got this. We can watch the rushes and smile, knowing we’ve got the beginnings of something good. We have such faith in the project that we can stumble over these hurdles, and keep on running. This is a race that’s far from over.
Bring on week two because we have some catching up to do.

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