I’m neck deep in teaching and rehearsals right now. My good friend Rick Sordelet is in Rome putting the fights together for Ben Hur Live! which is a massive stadium style touring show with about 400 actors and two four horse charriot teams. Rick trained me in Stage Combat while I was at Yale and I’ve been lucky to work with him since I got out. Rick also generously donated some equipment to How We Got Away With It, which we couldn’t have afforded and without would have had to drastically change a few pivotal moments in the film. Over the years, Ricks training has given me the skills to be a stunt coordinator. Which duties I happily oversaw on our film. And practically speaking, it was a body that we did not need to house, feed, travel, pay, etc… Needless to say, I’m indebted to what he has taught me and the generosity with which he opens his catalogue of equipment.
Anyway, if Rick’s out of town, or country in this case, I’m usually here in NY picking up the slack. And at the moment, it’s a lot of slack. I’m teaching at three schools and I’m the fight director for four shows in three different states. So, I’ve been spending a lot of time on buses and trains. As I was riding back from New Haven on Monday night I got a call from Jon telling me he and Tony had completed the rough cut of the film. I missed the call because I was passed out on the train, and as I was groggily making my way out of grand central I listened to the message and Jon’s words hit me like a bolt of lightning. I can’t express the excitement I have. I’ll be seeing the cut at some point over the next week. I just need to figure out when I can get it in my schedule! Yeesh.
Since I’ve never gone through post on a film that I’m producing before I’m keeping a running tally of how long the post process takes. I’ll be keeping tract of significant points in the post life of the film, ie, rough cut, final cut, festival acceptance, distribution, etc…. All dates will be tallied from the day we wrapped. So, for the record, the rough cut was delivered in 30 days! Let it be known that is an extremely fast rough cut. Jon and Tony worked their asses off.
On a side note, I’ve been reading Selling Your Film, Without Selling Your Soul while I have been on the train and busses. It’s a case study about films that have gone the route of DIY distribution, publicity, advertising, grassroots campaigns, etc…. First off, the book is free, which really wowed me. It’s a gold mine of information from a group of people that have gone out and done what someone like me, a person with a non-mainstream film, wants/needs to do. The book can be a bit repetitive at times when your’e going over numbers and figures about each film in a case study, but overall it’s not to be missed.