I am currently not making a film. No, not yet. It is not that I do not want to. It is not like I do not know how. I am working on it, daily. In fact, ‘I have various projects at various stages of development’, pages and pages of notes and scripts, schedules and budget estimates, considerations for crowdsourcing and marketing strategies, and more. You have discussed your ideas with friends and family to the point that a simple mention of the projects will likely make their eyes roll and induce them to switch their brain off. Suddenly you gaze at the calendar and realise how long ago it was that you first announced that you were going to make a film. Why is that film still not made?
Meet Elliot Grove (see more here). How could a young Amish Canadian teenager grow to become an Independent Film producer and founder of the Raindance Film Festival (see more here) and Film School (see more here)? We will state that the right temptations, a theatre (labeled as the ‘house of the devil’), a movie (with the associated tears) and a girl (that he will later seek to impress and eventually marry), sparked and fuelled a relentless passion and dedication towards a statement and a ‘dream’. He eventually made his film, and helped a multitude of filmmakers to commit to their dreams and promises and translate them into something concrete.
I attended the Raindance Lo-to-No Budget 2-Day course hoping to learn some creative budgeting tricks, see what I can get away with, but also importantly to receive a kick in the butt. It is important to recognise when we need one, no? I’m happy to say that Elliot and Raindance delivered on the above. Consider my butt well kicked and my bag of tricks well packed. If you are after the bag of trick, I recommend you attend one of the many courses Raindance has on offer. But, I will share with you my interpretation of “Elliot Grove’s 3 Reasons Why You Are Not Making Your Film”
Reson no. 1 You lack confidence. Let us face it. If you lack confidence, how can you convince people to follow you, to trust you, to work for you, to give you money, or even simply for you to find the courage to begin to ask for any of the above. How can you build confidence? You need small victories. There are no victories without battles, and those battles need outcomes; films. Short films, short documentaries, creative Vines, Youtube shows and videos of all kind. Confidence is gained realising the full extent of your capacities and the effects they have on other people.
Reson no. 2 You procrastinate. What do you think I am doing right now? This time is not entirely wasted ( I hope not) but it is not directly contributing to the making of my film. Nor does all the time I spend reading about filmmaking and the film industry online, ‘studying’ other filmmakers work, watching and reading the news, cleaning my car, playing with the cat and updating my phones and computers. You know what I am writing about…
Reson no. 3 You engage in self-pleasuring and self destruction. “It rhymes with banker…” Some might simply indulge in self-pleasuring, the idea of making a film is enough to stimulate the pleasure mechanism of the brain, and one can engage in this activity, over and over, and over again. Others might engage in various act of self-destruction, “humans have an innate capacity to self destruct.” Self-destructive behaviour may be used as a coping mechanism when feeling overwhelmed. Someone may choose to sabotage their work rather than cope with the stress. Some might even alternate between self-pleasure and self-destruction in an increasingly vicious circle. More obvious forms of self-destruction are eating disorders, alcohol abuse, drug addictions, sex addiction and self-injury.
“So, what was that idea you had? That idea for a film.” With the amount of people out there that have a passion for making films, the amount of people chasing a dream, a dream that you can actually share, you do not have that many excuses anymore. You do have, however, three reasons you can try to face, understand and overcome.