So I've been carting around a rough cut of Certainly Never for a few weeks now. The film's taking longer to get through post-production than originally planned upon. There was a bit of a running joke through the filming process that I was easily the least formally trained person on set--I didn't go to film school, I wasn't a formally trained actor, I sure as hell didn't have any real experience as a producer. But all of those things can be faked if surrounded by the right talented people and with an appropriate level of force of will.
Really, this film was made through the force of will of its cast and crew. The little film that could
In post-production, though, it's a little harder to rely on force of will. Force of will, for example, does not miraculously give you access to and ability with editing software, for example. So, for a variety of reasons, it's taken a while to get into the home stretch.
We can see the finish line. We won't cross it in this breath or the next, but it's visible. Right... there.
But I have a copy of the rough cut. The sound needs work, some of the transitions are glitchy, but it's watchable, it tells the complete story, it looks pretty as hell. It's viewable. So I want a few people to view it.
I did not count on the level of crippling anxiety that comes along with screening a film for the first time.
It has flaws. Flaws that are being worked on. But those flaws are still, currently, unfixed flaws, and they will be seen by anyone watching the screening. I've shown it to a few people and I start each viewing with a laundry list. This laundry list might be entitled "excuses."
And then there's the worst part. I'm all over this film. Not only are the words mine, but the production value falls on me as producer, the locations, choices as to which shots we used in the end (though thankfully due to the crew there were very few shots we shouldn't be proud of). And I'm in it. I'm in it a lot. And here's what I learned about screening a film you're in:
You get very tired of looking at yourself on screen. Unless you're a raging egomaniac. And while I'm a bit of an egomaniac, I don't believe I fall into the "raging" category.
I'm so sick of looking at my own face.
It'll be interesting though. Screening it once this week for a few crew members who haven't seen it yet, and tomorrow for a group of people who weren't involved in the project at all. I am, to be honest, terrified of their reaction. The crew members know the script and know the business of making the film, so while I'm looking forward to their feedback, it doesn't scare me. The second group of folks, though... they are real people.
Growing up, I wanted to be a writer.
Or at least, that was the most consistent dream. I wanted to write and tell stories. The format changed here and there--sometimes I wanted to be a novelist, sometimes I wanted to write comic books, sometimes, in moments of pure grandeur, I thought I wanted to write movies, but that seemed the least plausible and thus, received the least amount of attention.
It seems to be we've moved past the stage of multi-tasking and into the stage of multi-living. I don't know many pure writers anymore, or pure actors or directors or photographers. I know writers who direct, photographers who are cinematographers, models who are photographers, lawyers who are casting directors, producers who are actors. Used to be calling yourself a something slash something was a bit of hubris. "All actors want to direct"--remember that old joke? All movie stars want to be rock stars, and all rock stars want to be movie stars.
Nobody was what they wanted to be. I remember a line of sharp dialogue in a fantasy script I heard a long time ago. A straightforward swordsman is complaining about this very fact. Farmers want to be merchants, merchants want to be nobles, nobles want to be king, and the king wants to be God. Nobody is who they want to be.
Except these days, you actually CAN be everything you want to be. Or at least, you can try.
I pulled this site together in a few hours because I wanted a place to blog and I wanted a place to put my film resume and I wanted a home for my reel when it's finished and I wanted a place to put my newfound attempts at photography. For some reason lately people are willing to take my photo more than someone who looks like me really deserves to have his photo taken, so I needed a home for some modeling shots too. And really, it's all interwoven these days, isn't it? Films are shot on DSLRs. Fashion photographers become Academy Award winning directors. Models become actors, actors are the faces of fashion lines, and writers...
Well writers are always writers. Whether we want to be or not.
So welcome to Lost Continuity, my little patch of the internet where all this stuff comes together.
Matthew Phillion is a full time writer, frequent actor, sometimes director, and occasional photographer. He can be reached here.