Last year we spent quite a bit of time trying to make other peoples dreams come true. We were motivated to do so for many reasons. Love of the project, Love of the people involved, love of the potential opportunities. The reality is different.
When you step into the film business, it feels like you are chasing stars sometimes, and I do not mean the ones on the screen. It is a race, a long distance race. You may know all the runners in that race, having seen them over and over again in previous encounters. In the end they are there to win the race also.
We made quite a few projects last year. Mano a Mano, The Darkness Descending series, The Absent, Ocean Front Property, The Bouncer, and some smaller projects as well. In the journey of those projects, we found some people who really do want to work as a team, others it was a matter of convenience.
So I am reminded by one of the first lessons I was taught entering this business years ago. A man who was an agent for William Morris gave me possibly the most important advice I have ever gotten. It is also the first bit of advice I always forget, when faced by the “love of” issues mentioned above. “Never let anyone near your project who does not honestly love it.” Now I think I can add to that, “No matter what you think you might get out of it.”
It is hard to separate excitement from reality. There are always people who tell you that they have something or can get something. It is then your mind goes into a spin. This is the spin that cost you time. Time not money is your most valuable asset.
I think the difference for us is the fact that we have not waited on others to make a movie happen. We have entered the battle often with the understanding that we most likely will have to complete the project ourselves, with very little help or resources from those that first brought us the project.
Once again, people love film more than they love working on film. I can only say we have been fortunate. Our team has stuck together. Our way, though we are often told we are wrong, does get movies made.
In the end the person who gets the film done is honestly right. Working with the Continuum Pictures team, Danny Torres, Jason Durdon, Scott Hayman, Mark Lillit, Tyler Ross, Richard Scott, David Scruggs, Mesindo Pompa and P. David Miller has been a joy, a challenge and a blessing. It is hard to set around a table where everyone is right and you still have to choose a single direction and all follow it.
The evidence that it works is the movies themselves. We have climbed from the straight out of art school films to the actual features that people want to see.
Now we move on to making the films we have been developing since we began. Now we are in a position to make the movies we want to make, the way we want to make them.
2011 has been a good year for us so far.