I don’t know how the bug bit me… but it did. Ever since I first read about ‘instant’ movie fests, I needed to try one.
I scouted the Internet and finally latched on Cinemasports, out of San Fransisco. They sponsor competitions¹ from various locations. The filmaker gets a list of ingredients – a name, a character, a place, some dialog, and then fashions a short movie in a very short time span – usually no more than 9 or 10 hours!
In that time the script has to be written, or rewritten to include the ingredients, then shot and edited and uploaded. I’m breaking out in a sweat already.
The finished movie is no longer than three or four minutes. Still, it must be a real structured movie… well, it doesn’t have to be anything, but you’d like it to be a real structured movie because people are going to watch it that night in a club in San Fransisco.
When I started calling friends, asking if they’d like to be involved, I was surprised, because everyone said yes! In the end, not everyone could fit it into their schedule but we’ve still got a good turnout.
Our Director of Photography is Ray Flynn. He used to work with me at the TV station. Now, he runs a production company. He’s a good guy, plus he has the equipment.
The Director is Hugh Mackay. This is a great leap of faith because I’ve never met Hugh! He comes recommended by our writer, so why not?
Chris Arnott is the principal writer. I say principal because it’s a good guess there will be improvisation and suggestions from the rest of us. Chris writes for the New Haven Advocate, so he can push out words against deadline.
He and I had dinner this evening. It was Hollywood on I-95. I was ‘taking’ a dinner with the writer.
He has ideas, but it’s going to be tough to pin anything specific down because we need to work in the ingredients. More specifically, we want it to look like they belong, not that they were squeezed in.
Rick Allison, professional voice guy, poker fiend, bon vivant, will be there. I’m not exactly sure what Rick will do, but Chris said he wants to take advantage of Rick’s pipes. He has an incredible and distinctive voice. Trust me, you’ve heard his voice.
We’ll all be acting. That’s for sure. We’ll also all be holding boom mikes or reflectors or logging shots. There’s plenty to do in the field.
My friends Steve and Harvey (as opposed to Steve Harvey) are also in on the action. The funny things is, they’re the most educated – both being physicians. They have the least amount of discernible skill in this endeavor. They’ll probably have the most fun. If nothing else, Harvey is going to learn to edit using Final Cut Pro on his laptop, which he’s bringing.
I am the producer. I really don’t know exactly what a producer does. I picked up the check for dinner tonight. That’s a first step.
I’ll try and draw everyone together to get this to be a team effort.
Actually, the team might not be done. Depending on what he writes, Chris will recruit a few more actors and (this is so over-the-top it’s beyond me) someone to score the film!
Yes – a four minute movie with an original score. How cool is that?
So, there you have it. Our production opens and closes Saturday. Barring unforeseen grief, I expect to post the film right here for anyone to see.
Wish us luck.
¹ – Competition is probably a bad word, but the best I can come up with at the moment.