Wednesday, May 6, 2009
Inching my way towards a complete episode. The last one (Shadow Company) I really loved, but I need more horror. More Monsters, more Cops, and definitely an AHA moment. To borrow a phrase from Oprah. The AHA moment which I also call the Two Cathedral's moment. Two Cathedral's is the name of one of my favorite West Wing episodes. The end of that episode was very much an AHA moment, or more like a WOW moment.
That's what I want in this episode. I do indeed want to continue to make episodes and webisodes, and we will, even for no money. But I want this to be a final example of what I'm aiming for. I want this episode to really hit a home run. And what is that home run exactly? You should be wowed by what is accomplished with such a low (no) budget. And when the end titles hit you should say to yourself "Wow, that was amazing."
The deal with no budget means you are at the mercy of everyone's schedule as well as every part of life that you can't solve with a bit of money. If we had a budget, of course, we could pay everyone and buy things we need, as opposed to wonder about people's schedules and rig something together. Don't get me wrong, it's a blast to create from nothing, I do love it. But the thrill of doing something from nothing does at times collide with the storytelling process. I know what I want story wise, but I can't just make it happen with no money. I have to take a look at what I've got, can get, or might get, and write around it. Which means the end of this episode may not be exactly what I envisioned.
It's a compromise I've written about before. Writing around what you've got. Yes we are a talented group. Yes we can make alot happen. But we are still at the mercy of how reality evolves your creation. Alot of it is planned, but much of it is planned improvisation. Which often does alter that Wow moment. But you do your best and forget the rest.
Stress is a part of the problem. I've had to explain to someone recently, who didn't fully understand this process. They ask, Why was it so hard? Why couldn't I just get it done? Like all of creation, it takes time. I envy the sculptor who has only a rock and a chisel, or even clay and their hands. As a no budget moviemaker it's way more than that. I'm not just the director and writer, two jobs that require full attention. Besides that I have to be the production manager, the fx supervisor, the casting director, the editor, the mixer, the costumer, the caterer, the transportation, the prop builder, the composer, the marketer, the pr, the light designer, web master, PA, AD, DP, DOA, SOS, NWA and the list goes on. All of it with no money, and on a limited schedule.
I do indeed have people who help me. Thankfully every once in a while I will have someone else who can worry about the make up, squibs, fx. Everyone on set is always willing to help carry something, hold something, move something. You know who you are and I thank you. And as much of a big help that is, there are still many hats on my head. It's stressful, it's insane, and it'll make you wanna pull your hair out, have you seen my head?
So why do I do it. Because I believe in that WOW moment. I believe I can hit that home run. I believe I can make more than one person say "Wow, that was amazing." And in the end that's all I really want, just to show you something amazing.
We need more amazing in the world.