The journey so far has been nothing less than Epic. After principal photography wrapped I took a three week holiday and drove 6000km to create some “space” between what I had just done and what lies ahead for this year. Making a film is ALL consuming for sure and in order to clear my head I literally needed to get away, far away. I was politely told by both my producer and editing team to not look at the footage before I come in for editing this year so that I can have a fresh perspective on the story. Advice I took and left all my clips on my external hard drive happily out of arms reach while I watched the long road unravel before me.
Thinking back to the shooting experience I feel blessed to have been part of such an extraordinary team of Film Makers and Artists. The truth is that film is a collaborative art form, that is what makes it unique and beautiful. This being so the only way to make beautiful art is to have a great team. One where every member cares about their role and lives to make that part of the picture something unique. That is what I had on Wolwedans in die Skemer. A passionate team of people who cared what the shot looked like and more so, what was in the shot.
When this happens the actors have a platform to make their characters believable because the world is believable. When every aspect of a frame is a choice, from what the actors hold in their hands to what they wear to the colours of the paint on the walls the actors can take their character, arrive in the created world and deliver their performance with confidence that it is grounded.
We worked hard to give everyone a chance to deliver their passion. Whether props needed time to place leaves in a drive-way or focus wanted another rehearsal to get it just right before we went for a take, we tried, best we could, to make that possible. My amazing AD’ing team went without sleep a couple of times to re-schedule this adventure because as much as we needed to finish they also have a passion for making films and so gave the crew the space to create and work from their passions. Without good AD’s you are dead in the water. Fact.
I knew we where in a great place when the crew came to me with great ideas on how to make a shot or the set better. The smallest details where looked at and created, the props master even drew an Axe on a tea bag label for a scene. It’s basically a in-joke now because how would anyone even notice that. But they did it because its awesome and it makes the world better and fuller. The grips came up with some epic tracks - out of no-where they would assemble frame-and-boards so that we could move on a shot. Wardrobe would intuitively add details in the clothing to reveal character traits where possible… I can keep going but you get the point. Everyone got it and and as the ball got momentum it wasn’t anymore about how long we shot for but what we shot and making sure it is all there, every detail in place. wow.
Writing this I get goosebumps… I dont know how to ever top this - this was my first film and what a blessing!
in Ode to the crew and cast of Wolwedans in Die Skemer here are some behind the scenes videos that give you a feeling of what it was like.