I didn’t track the progress of my first film so closely as I am tracking Better Half. There are lots of things about making this film that are different. But one thing that has been the same is “that feeling”.
The most challenging location we needed for The Road to Sundance was a Night Club. Two in fact. One club was supposed to be a dive. The other a full on night club with DJ and a crowd. We actually staged it in a dance studio at the fabulous Electric Lodge in Venice, California. Nine of the ten principles of the film showed up for the scene. And I remember running around, alot like I do on this current film, trying to get this shot or talk to that actor or make sure whatever needed to get done got done.
I was working with the DP to get this birds’ eye shot. And I remember seeing how great it looked and seeing how many Craigslist extras actually showed up. And I remember exclaiming “Hot Damn, we’ve got a movie!” That was the night, the moment, my first feature film became a reality.
This past week I got that feeling again. For five days my cast and crew made me laugh and cry and just be so proud to have such great artists involved in Better Half, bringing my source material, my characters, my vision – to life, happily, expertly, lovingly. Wrapping the Loft location was a milestone for us. Much of the movie happens there, in Tony & Leo’s loft. Combined with the other locations we have done, we are well on the other side of 65% of principle photography finished.
I haven’t counted the scenes we have left because I hesitate to celebrate too quickly. We still face many formidable challenges in getting the rest of the locations we still need. But wrapping the Loft was Huge!
As I stood in the middle of that condo, at 4:30 in the morning, after repainting the walls before going to work, I took last looks to see that we had left everything in order. And in every bone in my exhausted body, I got the feeling, “Hot Damn! We’ve got a movie!”