According to Matt Webb, of indiefilmhustle.com, film production and development is the “creation, writing, organizing and planning stage of a project.”
However, this could apply to any of the arts. In theatre, a play, or series of plays must be selected and scheduled for the upcoming season. A painter may prepare to paint a subject by gathering materials, a novelist may review notes or past outlines in order to ready a book to be written, and a dancer may even begin the task of deciding the tone and rhythm of a new piece. All this boils down to choosing a project and placing all of your energies and passions into moving forward with its birth. Taking the first step has always been easy for me. However, for others it might be the hardest part of a project. These last 15 months, I have taken many first steps and taken them all the way to the point of starting and beyond, but I have not finished. Part of my problem with developing an idea into a story is the fact that once I make the decision to start production, I end up changing my mind and delaying the project, or worse yet, start the project and never finish. Therefore, the developmental stage has always been the biggest nightmare for me, because if I didn’t progress, then I didn’t fully commit to the project in the first place.
For example, I have now made a decision that whatever project I decided to embark on, I must commit 100% or not start at all. I have gathered a small team of producers and colleagues to help me select my next directing project. We spent a couple of months going over scripts and discussing the practically of shooting each story and any related or perceived obstacles we might encounter. In the end, we came across a story that had been outlined and partially written. The decision came from the idea of, “can we shoot it for X amount of dollars?” and will this be the project that we are in love with so much that we can all devote perhaps a year or more into its completion?
The answer was given and we all gave a blood oath to create this project, raise it, and, finally, send it off into the world for all to see. In some ways it is also a rebirth for me from being a man with the reputation of finishing projects under budget and with satisfying results, to a man who for the last 15 months starts, but doesn’t finish anything. I am getting back to a full fledged commitment to the art that lives inside me and is always waiting for an opportunity to come out and play. It is time for the over protective parent to let the child artist inside run things for a while. The overthinking, over baring parental brain will finally be on the sidelines.
These past couple of years have made many of us much more cautious than before. Understandably. But, the time has come to begin again. To embark on a new journey of story and film. The pedantic mind gets in the way of creation. Time to go and finish that first draft before our next production meeting and start flexing my filmmakers muscles! Watch this space!