Well, we resumed filming at the end of August and with the exception of one more day of exteriors, we are just about wrapped for the LA segment of the Ten Films/Ten Countries: A Cinematic Journey film project.
I must say though, that I was pretty nervous coming back from an almost scare. I was also a bit surprised how anxious the crew and the cast were to return to work. We were all a bit more careful and strict with our safety measures; wearing masks, keeping a social distance, not sharing craft or the catering. It was a long and beautiful day of filmmaking because of the hard work and the brilliant talents of the crew and cast. It was also a bit sad, because it was the last day of the shoot for our leading lady and for some of the crew members. The exteriors will be shot with a skeleton crew outside around the neighbourhood and it does not involve any humans within 2 metres of us.
I sat in my office looking at the computer screen as the footage was being uploaded to the editing hard drive and then it occurred to me. I want more. I love the whole process of making films that I don’t want it to stop. Of course I am still not finished with the current project and I am already planning to shoot another film. This phenomenon has also appeared to me while I was on set acting in a film or television show and before I was wrapped. “Where is the next job coming from and when will I work again?” As a director, however, it is a bit different. A script could take months to write and then raising money for the production can take another 6 or more months to raise. Then there is the preproduction organisation, casting, and hiring crew, which may take several weeks. The shooting of the film takes many days and finally, the postproduction could take 6 to 8 weeks. So, the shelf life of one of my films can take over a year from concept to distribution. So, why in the world would I be contemplating the next project when the one I just shot is not even in postproduction?
Let me answer this question with another questions. The creative fire that burns and fuels artistic endeavours are now stoked and must continue to burn. I can not cap this flow of energy, passion, and expression just because one project goes into its final phase, can I? Won’t I run into the same obstacles in the age of Covid-19, that I just encountered? The answer to that question is yes…and no. One thing I have learned over the years of being in this business in front and behind the camera is that, it is all improvisation. No matter how much I plan, discuss, decide, and execute, there will always be an element of guesswork involved. I guess that is what I am addicted to, the art of solving problems, expressing the art inside me, and putting it out to the world. Something from nothing is my mantra.
So, I will be finishing up this latest film and going straight into postproduction. Shortly after that, I am already booked until next autumn on several projects that are in serval stages of creation. All of these I will discuss on the next blog, but if you don’t mind, I have to get back to the uploading of the footage of my latest film. So, until then I will burn the candle at both ends and maybe in the middle as well.