Let the Hunger Games Begin

Tomorrow, the shoot for Hold Me Tight officially begins.  The actors have already been cast, the script rehearsed.  I'll be shooting tomorrow and Sunday, and after that, it's crunch time to get the film edited before the end of the month, and school closes.

I'm expecting good things.  Our actresses are lovely.  Their time in rehearsal brought a lot of great things to the script.  I think the shoot should go excellently, though that doesn't rid me of all the nerves.

The first films I ever made in high school were long, heavily dialogue based films.  Looking back now, though I'm not yet disappointed with the quality of my past writing, I know that the quality of the films overall was atrocious.  I didn't know how to light a scene, or how to record sound.  Now, with this knowledge at hand, the pressure is on.  I've learned from my early experiences filming dialogue scripts, that anything that can go wrong, will go wrong.  It's my motto for filming.

Don't get me wrong; it's not a pessimistic motto.  I don't mean to doom myself to failure.  But I've learned to always be cautious, to double check everything, to not be afraid of pushing people to their limits to achieve the best results, or coming off a little "bossy".  There is something one of my school's professors said recently that I've taken close to heart: that directing, like a lot of aspects of filmmaking, is just a big manipulation.  Not in the negative sense of the term, but in the sense that when you are on set, and you're directing a group of people, every action you take must be done and performed in such a way as to get the best result from that person.  You have to be consciously aware at all times, not just of the equipment, the composition, and your actors - but of everyone on set, and how they are performing.

It's an interesting concept.  Currently, I'm still debating internally whether or not directing is a path I still want to consider.  I'm specializing in screenwriting, while at the same time planning on taking courses and becoming proficient in things like Film and TV makeup, production design, and so forth, so that I have the ability to still be a part of the production process.

But directing?  We'll just have to wait and see.  After filming this project, I might have a whole new, different attitude.

Wish me luck on my shoot everyone!

Shai Cotten