Skip to main content

On Making a Movie (in 54 hours)

I have this theory that not a single person on this Earth would say no to the question, "do you want to help make a movie?". I've never met a person who doesn't like movies, and what fan wouldn't want to be a part of something they love?

Here's the deal, though: movies are work. Anybody who thinks making a movie is just pointing a camera and playing pretend is so, so wrong. How do I know this? I've done it.

This weekend, a friend and I participated in Knoxville's 54 Hour Film Festival, a competition of 5-7 minute films that are made over a weekend. If that time crunch didn't seem daunting enough, we are also given a genre, line, action, prop, and, after 24 hours, curveball element to include in the film.

It may sound easy, and, to be honest, I get why it might, but struggling to get schedules together, find locations, write a story, and shoot and edit a piece (and remember to sleep and eat) was definitely a challenge. An awesome challenge.

In talking to people about the film, many have asked about the awards it could win, and, while all of that stuff is great, I just think it's cool that we made a movie. It's an accomplishment, and we have something to show for it.

Creative work is definitely hard work. Ask anybody who's ever tried to construct a story or a visual image, and they'll tell you that a lot of time, thought, and energy. We're basically creating things out of thin air. That's why having a finished product, seeing something formed out of nothing, is one of the most rewarding and validating things I think a person can do, no matter what it is or how long it takes.

After 7 hours of prep, 12 hours of shooting, and 10 of editing, we have a five and a half minute film. Of course we hope people will enjoy it, and it would be great to win something, but it exists, and that's the coolest thing of all. I love watching movies, but I love making them even more.

If you'd like to see the film, click here. A little warning: the film includes references to drug use, so if that's not something you're comfortable with, it might not be the best thing to watch.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

I'm Still Not Sure

I've tried to start this post several times over the past few weeks. For one thing, it's incredibly difficult to write after not doing so for months (seven, to be exact). It's another thing entirely to admit that I don't know what I'm doing, where I'm going, or who I am.

That being said, I've done it before. Two years ago, I posted a video on YouTube entitled "I'm Not Sure". Now, if you've never seen this before, I completely understand. I just watched it for the first time since I posted it, and it was cringeworthy. This is not only because it's weird to watch 20 year old me go through her YouTube phase, touch her face too much, talk with some strange inflection in her voice. Well, that's certainly part of it. Really, though, it's because nothing's changed.

At the end of the video, I say I'm grateful that I have a year and a half left of college to "figure it all out". That year and a half has passed. I gradu…

Talking to Myself in the Mirror

I think it's a pretty safe bet that a lot of aspiring actors/writers/directors/filmy people practice their future Oscar speech in the mirror as kids. I did. Who am I kidding? I still do. It comes with the territory. My mirror talks go, ahem, went (who am I kidding? go) further.

Sometimes, I do my makeup while talking to Barbara Walters. Other days, brushing my hair turns into a podcast interview. Most of the time, though, I rehearse what I'm going to say to my heroes. These hypothetical moments are incredibly important, and I can't afford to say anything stupid, so car rides, showers, and mornings getting ready are devoted to preparation.

This probably makes me sound crazy. The word "narcissist" may also come to mind. I think one of my heroes would have appreciated both the crazy and the narcissism in this bit of oversharing, though, but we lost her this morning.

One of my first posts on this blog was a tribute to Carrie Fisher. I read it over this afternoon after…

Change is a Good Thing

I'm a binge watcher. A product of my time. There are still, however, shows I will watch as they air. Sure, most of them are award shows, but that still counts, right?

American Horror Story falls into the very tiny category of non-awards shows I'll tune into live every week. After hearing a ton of hype, I watched the first couple seasons on Netflix, then started tuning in every Wednesday starting in season three. Even if I hadn't watched the first couple of seasons, I wouldn't have missed anything. Each season is a brand new story, a chance for the showrunners and a troupe of actors to explore something new.

After the third season, though, I felt like something was missing. The cast of characters kept getting bigger, more subplots kept developing, and, to me, the series began to feel scattered and unpolished. In short, it lost its edge. Despite loving the show and the amazing cast, I couldn't finish last season.

I went into this year thinking I was going to skip it a…