My most recent film, STAY, is currently on the festival circuit. One thing that I have learnt, shooting an elaborate short film across four seasons (and spending two years in production), is that you aren't getting your name out there and your work isn't being seen. Think about it. Over a two year period I dedicated all of my free time to this one project. At the end of that period I had a fantastic film that everyone involved was proud of, however during that time I had nothing else sceened infront of an audience. This is a bad thing for an up and coming indie filmmaker.
The question people asked me was what I was making next? I had a great idea. One that was going to be even bigger and better than Stay. But what happens when the crew you have collaborated with don't like the idea? What happens when your support network decide to take a pass?
This is the new plan. I'm not making one film in 2016. I'm making three films. All completely different. All using different cast and crew. Always pushing myself out of my comfort zone and trying to tell compelling stories. So now I approach my DP and say "I got this great idea" and he hates it. So what? I have two more. "Okay, that second one is sort of nice". I don't mind. I was saving the best until last. "YES! Let's do it. I'm in."
But wait. Writing three scripts and getting them up to a standard that will blow an audiences socks off. That's time consuming right? So it's time to let go. I wrote one of the films that I'm making. It's called PADLOCK and it's about male domestic violence. The second film is written by someone else. I've started working with new writers that have something interesting to say. This film is Too Little, Too late (working title) and it tells the story of a girl who meets her biological father at the funeral of her presumed real parents. The third film is in development. I wrote the first draft and I have brought in a cowriter and help develop the script. It's called I'm Not Okay and it tells the story of a young woman with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD).
I think the key to being proactive as a filmmaker is:
(a) always have more than one project at any one time
(b) collaborate and put faith in other creative people and stop being a one man band
(c) take chances on subject matter that push you outside you comfort zone
This is the first time in my life I've tried juggling and I wonder how I've made it this far without chopping my arm off with a rouge chainsaw.