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понедельник, 22 августа 2016 г.

Filmmakers and Managing Time

As an independent/underground filmmaker, it can be very difficult to try and make time for your films. Not only do you try to live a successful life; having a job, keeping a girlfriend/wife, raising children, going to school, etc., but, you also have an insane passion for your film work that can very difficult to invest all of your time in.
Think about all you need to do to make a film. You need to research; figure out exactly what you’re film will be about and look up information that will help you develop your idea. You have to write your film; construct scenes, characters, dialogue, and plot structure. You need to finance your film; it takes a lot money to make a film; you may need anywhere from 3,000 to 50,000 dollars. You need to cast your film; you’re not in Hollywood so you may have difficulty finding actors committed to an independent/underground project. You need to plan your film; figure out how, where, and when you’re going to shoot. You need to actually shoot your film; not everyone will be as committed as you; you’re not in Hollywood so you don’t have 10 hour days, six days a week to shoot your film. You need to edit your film; depending on how you’re shooting this thing, you’re going to need to figure out how you’re going to edit it; editing takes a lot of time, software, and hardrive space. You need to market your film; who’s going to see it? Why will they see it? What will they like about it?
There are countless more steps in between the ones I mentioned. Making a film is very hard work. However, if there’s one thing independent/underground filmmakers wish they had more of is time. If you have the time, you can do pretty much everything you need to get done. But, as we all know, time is difficult to manage. You have to look at your life and figure out what time you can use for your film and what time you can’t use. You need to figure out what you can cut, and what can’t be cut. Yes, your film does need a lot of your attention, but you shouldn’t overwhelm yourself with things you don’t need.
Use Managerial Skills
You can’t do everything. Try to remember that, because, it’s the most important thing. Try not to get too caught up in things you can’t control. And, remember, one of the best things you can do is outsource. If you’re not the producer, then you may not have to worry about that so much. But, if you are the producer AND the director, chances are, you may get a little greedy because it is YOUR film. The best thing you can do as producer OR director is make sure you use the managerial skills.
Make sure you have a good understanding of everyone else’s job and make sure you know exactly what you want. Too many filmmakers have the mindset of, “If I want it done right, I have to do it myself”. That’s really not true. If you’re able to articulate your ideas and explain how you want them reached, then you don’t have to do them yourself. That’s what having managerial skills is about.
It works in any context. If you’re running a business, you can’t do every job. You have to be able to tell people what you want them to do so they can understand you. That’s how you run a successful business. Too many filmmakers say: “no one understands me. I have a vision… blah blah blah”. You can’t be that way. If you can’t articulate your ideas, then you can’t expect people to understand them.
That’s what this is all about. If you’re able to explain to people exactly what you want in a way they can understand, everyone will be happy; especially you. You have to be a people person. From a producer standpoint; you need to be this way to ensure that everything runs smoothly, everyone’s taken care of, and the finished product will be the best it can be. From a director’s standpoint; you need to be this way to ensure that everything is exactly how you pictured it. Remember, a director isn’t as notable for his vision, but, rather, the ability to express his vision.
The point is this. You have to be the type of person people can understand. Whether they understand your art is a different issue. But, if they can understand you, then they’ll be able to make you happy. And if you can outsource jobs, than that saves you time.
Stay Calm at All Times
The smoother everything runs, the less time is wasted. If anything will destroy your project, the first is time issues. The second, of course, is money. However, if you manage your time properly, money can be saved.
Working in to what I’ve stated earlier; you have to be a people person. You have to understand that mistakes will be made and people may just not “get it” sometimes. The best thing to do is to stay calm. You need to figure out what’s most important to you and make sure it gets accomplished without getting angry or upset over the process. It’s very very difficult but it can be done.
Remember, time complaining, time arguing, and time fighting is time wasted.
Have a Plan “B” or “Cut-off” Point
The worst thing you can do is become too involved in a project that’s failing. You don’t want to find yourself in a situation where your out of money, out of hope, and out of time. Just like any business plan, you need to have a plan for your film. Set a point in time in which, if you haven’t made “X” amount of progress, you “cut-off” the project before you get too deep and spend too much of your time and money. Also, have a plan “B” so, if, you’re at a point in which things are failing, you can still salvage the material without completely dropping the project.
These two elements are very important in your project. You need to plan ahead and set these points early in the production. That’s why it’s very important to make due dates for everything you’re working on. Many people will not get things done unless there’s a certain point in time in which it needs to be done. A lot of artists and a lot of people are procrastinators. This can be a bad thing or a good thing depending on how you look at it. It’s a bad thing if you don’t set a due date on something; because then it would never get done.
What’s Most Important to You?
It’s very easy to get caught up in your project. It happens all the time. You need to sit down and analyze your life before you just jump into a film. You need to figure out what your priorities are. Most filmmakers will think that their film is the most important thing to them. And it may see that way but it usually isn’t. Look at everything around you; your school, your work, your hobbies, your family, etc. Would you really want to sacrifice everything for your film.
Remember, film, just like any art, reflects life. You don’t want to destroy your life for your film. Film is about embracing life; in its best and its worst. You need to look at your life surrounding you and realize what you’re willing to sacrifice and what you can’t sacrifice. If you understand that, then you can take out the things you don’t need to make time for your film. And, you won’t get too ahead of yourself with the film. You’ll be able to look at a script and say, “I can make this given the time I have” or, “I couldn’t possibly make this without sacrificing my life for it”. You won’t know any of that unless you sit down and analyze it. But, if you know what you want to do, and you know how much time you have to do it, then, you’ll be able to take that time and manage it properly.

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