A meta-tastic film about the creative process
A film about the inner battles we have during a creative process disguised as a director pitching his idea to a producer, wrapped in a homage to some of the greatest filmmakers we’ve learned so much from. And, of course, shot on 35mm.
Shortly after moving to London I got a job which paid my bills but did very little to fulfil my creative senses. Sitting in an open-plan office with about 200 other people and being fed sales numbers every Wednesday tends to do quite the opposite.
But thanks to that it kept pushing me every day to try and come up with something so one day, on a lunch break, I got this idea about a 10–minute film about this guy trying to pitch his 10-minute film to his producer and it would be full of references and quotes of other films and a kind of an homage to all the great directors that we’ve learned from.
So I immediately messaged Brian, my friend and producer, to meet up in the evening, come 8pm we were sitting in the pub and I was proudly showing him my napkin art that only made sense to me.
„Yes, that’s OK Maj,” said Brian „Just... Write a script, OK?”
We both spent many a-pint criticising other films and how we would’ve done it better so anything that came our way that even remotely smelled of filmmaking would possibly become an actual production. So I went away and wrote the first draft, ran it through him and Sinead and then wrote about ten more until we had something that we weren’t completely ashamed of.
The dream was to shoot in on 35mm as that would make it a true homage to the filmmakers we were tipping our hats to. But as we’ve soon realised that would be ridiculously expensive and way out of our budget (which at that point was completely non-existent). That being said we decided to make a crowdfunding campaign and ask the people to back us up and help us make our dreams come true. As it turned out crowdfunding is a golden pot for new backpacks, home gadgets and board games. But not short films.
The crowdfunding campaign turned out to be a failure financially-wise as we didn’t manage to raise our goal however it proved a great move because it pushed us to get through our pre-production and nail down loads of details (you can’t just go and ask people for money without telling them exactly what you’re spending it for). It also pushed us to get our crew and part of our cast together.
We got Chris who turned out to be a Scotsman dating my Slovenian high-school friend. They now both lived in London. As did I.
I met Jeff working as a runner on one of the projects where he was part of the main cast. So I cold-called him (that being my second toughest telephone call to make in my life), he agreed to read my script and the next morning emailed me his schedule to pick the date when we want to do it.
At the same time we got an offer of a lifetime from Kodak who offered us their stock and another offer (lifetime number two) from Procam and Take2 for the kit. I can’t talk about the details of the offers but it suffices to say I would not be sleeping well for the rest of my life had I not have taken it.
Shooting dates Saturday and Sunday, December 2nd and 3rd 2017.
Friday 24. November 2017 I met with Brian and Ben (DoP) in our local pub to find out we got sent the invoice for the kit which turned out to be three times the cost of the whole production and the shooting location was still not approved. So basically a week before shooting we didn’t have anything apart from the cast, crew and props. Much to my surprise a fairly odd happened to me and I suddenly felt completely calm and sure that in the end it will all fall together nicely. If by Thursday evening we don’t have anything we cancel, was the decision as I left the boys in the pub.
Monday morning the kit invoice turned out to be a big misunderstanding and the venue got confirmed. I wish I was there to see Brian’s face when two trucks (!) drove in full of equipment for the shoot.
When someone unloads two full trucks of kit for your film it starts smelling pretty real. Saturday, 2.12.2017 9.00 the shoot started end ended the next day 19.00.
We got absolutely everything we needed in the can (literally) and it was the best film school anyone could ever wish for. I’ve read so many books, seen so many films and analysed them, watched way too many videos on filmmaking and read just as many interviews. But nothing compares to being on set and actually shooting your own film.
And now it’s here. It took us to Cannes and seven other international film festivals and I couldn’t be prouder by what we’ve managed to achieve. Just a couple of guys and girls that want to make films.