I haven’t been around much have I? Bad ginger! Unfortunately I have not been busy making ROSEBLOOD – the 4th Black CAB Productions short film. That film is deader than disco….
I received the news from the writer / director Chris on Saturday and I wasn’t exactly chuffed about it, but when you know the reasons behind it, it didn’t come entirely as a huge surprise and there’s not much you can do about it, except p*ss and moan; or move on with your life. I choose the latter.
I don’t suppose it was a shock to anyone following the Podcast – seeing as I stopped producing new episodes a while back. That was actually to do with work stress – taking on a new and very demanding role and forced with a very steep and exhausting learning curve and workload. The end of each day left me emotionally battered and bruised and unable to muster the energy to clip tracks and edit f-bombs etc. I mean in the time that I have been talking about ROSEBLOOD I have produced more trailers, show reels and corporate films than I care to mention. I just haven’t made a horror film in that time. Something I must rectify soon.
We actually have 11 podcast episodes begging for release, but I am currently studying for work related exams and now that the film is no more, I am totally bereft of any reason why I should release them other than to give people a glimpse of how projects die; often through no fault of their own.
So why did the film die? well namely the logistical aspects of the production were seemingly too impossible to solve – find a location, or fund the building of a set and the hiring of a suitable venue to house it, co-ordinating a production that requires a crew from across the US and UK, and finding one window in everyone’s schedules to get the film in the can. Of course other productions don’t have those constraints – those with money and contacts, but this is no-budget filmmaking at it’s worst; where you decide to pick the most difficult way of achieving things and often refuse to compromise until too much time has passed.
The moral of the story – if there has to be one – is to pick a doable project to devote time and energy too. Do not overcomplicate it! Keep it simple and stay true to the reasons why you are doing the film in the first place. If that film becomes a beast of unimaginable proportions, work out if it still fulfills the original need. In our case the film did not need to be made for any reason beyond one man’s vision. A film this logistically complicated would have been more doable as a feature and not as a short. In which case my natural inclination is to offer a solution- such as move on to another project or cut back and remove these restrictive constraints. So you can’t afford a set or a a place to build it? Rewrite the damn thing. So you can’t get the old crew together easily? get a new crew. So you can’t afford a set? sell the camera you didn’t need to buy and bingo! you now have some money for a set.
I guess I should have listened to my instincts when I was brought on board as producer to a short film that had no script and which eventually took 6 months to write. And then that script became the immovable obstacle in our path, rather than the tool which we could weild and hone to realise our dreams.
I am not saying a passionate filmmaker should compromise, not if they want to really create something special; but some of the best accidents of necessity have resulted in extremely memorable cinema. Flexibility and innovation are the key maxims if you want to be able to roll with the punches and come up slugging. But in this case I am the lone voice in a choir of different opinions.
None of this is intended as a criticism of anyone involved in the project. That is not the objective here. It is simply to say that we all have a part to play in the creation of a film and because we were not united and focused to the original goal both the film and time slipped through our fingers.
So what next? get writing and get filming. When the script is ready and is doable, then the podcast will begin anew.
This time it is a purely UK effort and things will happen. Slowly but surely. Watch this space.
Apologies to those regular listeners to the podcast! Your loyalty was not unnoticed and was very much appreciated!