When I made The Last Halloween the plan had been one film and done. I would have scratched that particular itch and would feel good about it.
One and done.
My filmmaking days were really in my youth. When I was a carefree kid improv-ing movies with friends. The older you get the more serious it tends to get and trying to overcome the fact that I haven’t really made movies that weren’t for a goof, and that movies require a great amount of patience and time, I just wasn’t up to it.
And that’s fine.
I have my writing, and other stuff I do, so there’s no real reason to force something that wasn’t natural.
Only, that itch wasn’t completely scratched.
I like LAST HALLOWEEN and, considering it’s from a guy that was figuring everything out still, it’s pretty fun. But the thing is that I am a storyteller at heart and as such some stories aren’t best told with words but with images. And the fact is that I do love to take photographs and filming isn’t a far throw from that. So in the late spring I wrote a screenplay for something I was going to call I AM THE DOOR. It was very simple, very small, and intended to be very short. Sorta how I should have done things the first time. I would need, at most, three actors, and could roll with a small crew and two locations.
I sat on it for a couple months then realized that, hey, if you are going to do something with this then you should probably do something with it. I posted online what I was planning and that I needed an actor, the intention being that I’d play one role and use another filmmaking friend for the other one. I was shocked at how many people wanted to be involved. Not wanting to take away from what I wanted to do, or to waste people’s time, I went with the first person who offered to act in it and another friend who offered to do effects.
It was for real all over again.
I made a plan of attack and we figured out a day to shoot and a place to shoot at. The film called for one special effect that I needed to pull off so I figured the smartest thing to do would be to try to get that shot before getting people together to shoot the film. I put together a plan with how I wanted to do it and set about getting what I needed. The effect worked in theory but not in practice, and trying to shoot it on my own proved unsuccessful. Take two and I had a friends shooting but again it just wasn’t working. I knew what I wanted but getting the angles and the effect to work well was the trouble. We found a modicum of success on a third day and had something I felt I could work with.
Next came the shooting day.
When I do this stuff the last thing I want to do is to make people feel as if they are wasting their time. I hate that. We had a slow start on filming day but once we got to the blood the heat and bugs we had been contending with didn’t seem to bother us as much and we really moved fast. It was really a short shoot and it went well, all considered.
Since then I have put together a rough cut of the film and am still tinkering with it to try to make it work. I like where I am going but it still needs some work. I am using some of the unused music we made for the last film in it, so that feels good. Some of that stuff was so good, I am glad it’s being heard.
The story is one of getting what you asked for and the consequences therein.
I never know how to look at something I created but I like it.
I am really lucky to have some amazing and supporting friends though, I tell you that.