… or should we say from the set? Sometimes just before entering the set, it feels like a battle is about to start. Everybody in the trenches, after a rainy day, ready to blast at the enemy. But who’s the enemy after all? Directors have the infinite dream of shooting all the planned shots and have the impossible hope of finding even time for additional experiments on sets. Dop never has enough time to do that one shot they care about, and it does not matter if at the end of the day the shots aren’t all done, as long as they have that fantastic shot. But here it come the first Ad, with his famous words, “there’s not time for this, let’s move on”. His priority is not to get the quality, and not even the quantity because there is never enough time for the last few shots the director has in mind.
The actors never have enough info about what they are supposed to do. They have read the script, but in the… field, all changes. And they would want to have that extra minute to do another take of the same shot, but the director needs a close-up on a hand holding a suitcase, and that fantastic performance they dreamed of all week will never happen, because of a technical problem of the steadicam, or because the lights are not set up, or… there’s no enough time.
But at the end of the day, after everyone has gone home, the producer and the director are in a dark room together, they are left with what has been done in the field. The producer wants that shot because it costed a lot of money, but the director prefers another performance, the one before, done without the big crane, on a slowly pushing-in dolly.
And the editor complains, “these shots don’t cut and the continuity is out of the window!”
Making movies is a labor of love, let’s make love, not war 🙂
Picture taken from Anthony Luke Photography