Welcome to 2012 everyone!
I know I’m a little bit belated with this, but I’ve had a wonderful festive break from blogging and am now back to whipping the film into shape.
Where are we at? I hear you ask.
We are currently at the beginning of post production! I met with Dan, the editor toward the end of November and we walked through the rushes. It was a great meeting and Dan made notes, we all laughed at the amazing acting skills on screen and talked about the general tone and feel of the film. I gave him the most recent copy of the script to put together a rough cut on and we decided that we would go from there.
There have been various delays – the two big ones, obviously, are Christmas and New Years, as well as Dan being packed off to Italy for work and me getting ill just before Christmas – but we both got through it and that resulted in the first rough cut of the film hitting my inbox at the start of last week.
It was both daunting and exciting to watch.
Watching the first cut is terrifying, in essence. Every single problem you talked about around a table in pre-production, made a split second decision about on set in production is suddenly concreted on screen in front of you. You notice every single thing you never did on set – was that cable always in that corner? Why didn’t we move it out of the way? You notice everything that’s wrong continuity wise. You hear every extra noise that wasn’t there before, you see all the shifts in light, the differences in performance. How the rhythm of the cut is wrong, there are pops in the sound and for a split second it looks like the actors break character. You almost watch with your hands over your eyes, because it’s slightly horrifying.
Then you spot a sparkle in the performance. You laugh. You gasp. You grin madly because you can see the potential in the film, the diamond in the rough. The lighting looks amazing in this shot. The sound is crystal clear in this entire scene. God, that shot was so difficult to get but it completely paid off. The look on his face is hilarious. The look on hers is beautiful.
It’s about trimming and shaping and pruning the cut until all of it is full of glee and delight. Or shock and awe, depending on what kind of film you’re making. Just finding the right emotion of the scene, the comedy in the beat, the horror in the darkness. Pin-pointing the best way to get across the message of your film.
That’s where we’re at right now. I’m meeting up with Dan tomorrow to go over the cut and we’ll move this bad boy forward and keep shaping, sculpting and trimming until we find the cut that really zings with the rest of the film.
This is the really exciting part.