Our 7th year of making movies in just one weekend, and I feel like I have learned so much and at the same time, I know nothing at all.
Speaking of being deep and mysterious, I went through a lot of emotions this weekend, most of them random and uncalled for. I was able to ignore the negative stuff and focus on the good stuff. The way our team works together, the way that people pull through for each other and pitch in to make a tangible thing at the end of the weekend.
Friday night we got the call, just on 7pm. We had been given Road Movie for our genre. The character was Billy Young, an ex-bully, the prop was a bent bit of wire, the line of dialogue “What have you got?” and there was a required film effect: a freeze frame ending.
This year I was head writer again. My team was me, Hannah and Dale and we worked together in a new and very effective way. Hannah pitched a solid way to put the film together and between the whole group we came to a great approach to the story. We were able to leave the big team brainstorm at 8.30pm, and we settled into my spare room quickly. We talked through what we thought was *really* happening in the story and what we had to remember it. We collaborated on the first scenes and then fell into a routine: Dale and I talked through the beats and what should happen and when. Hannah, on the laptop, took care of the dialogue.
We read through it a number of times, edited back, sorted out the finer points and were more or less done by 12.20. I sent Dale and Hannah home, took a break on tumblr and did two more polishing passes on the script. It was pretty darn great. I headed into bed around 1am and got to sleep around 40 minutes later. I woke up again right at 4.44 for a while, then managed to sleep again until 6 when Lee’s alarm went off. I headed into Indigo City for the organisation and we decided to head out to Fraser’s Dad’s place to start filming. I managed to stay there for about half an hour before I started to feel a driving need to sleep and drove home.
Having ingested no caffeine I was able to get to sleep in the middle of the day, I managed a good two and a half hours napping before I woke up feeling kind of awesome. Dale and I drove out to Whitireia Park where the gang was, and after some tiki-touring around Titahi Bay we even found them.
They had got to page 4 or 6, and people were pessimistic about getting it finished before the sun went down. Somehow though, we pulled through and got the shots that counted with a gorgeous sunset in the background and amazing orange light over our lovely leads. (Ants and Kerina). I headed back into Indigo City to get dinner into the oven and they just had a shot or two still to get.
When the team returned, we’d completed principal photography. It’s a good feeling. We all managed a pretty awesome night’s sleep since that pressure was off and that meant Sunday was all for editing, pick ups and filming our Jenni’s Angels Team Promo. Norm and Steph together had a decent cut compiled by 1.30 Sunday, which is unheard of for us. I got lots of people to draw in my Wreck my Journal, Fraser destroyed the page that you’re meant to get a friend to destroy, and Hannah added some stuff to the writing-y pages. I educated Fraser in the ways of Derrick Comedy and people went home to get sleep.
Our safety cut was driven down in a relaxed manner and we had a final edit with a number of fixes in with ten minutes to spare. It was a very relaxed Sunday 48 hours for Jenni’s Angels, and we celebrated by watching our back catalogue. Good times!
Last night I was tired and hungry and sad and confused. This morning, after a solid sleep, I feel relieved, satisfied and happy. We made a very pretty, somewhat emotional drama and it’s a risk for us. Our heat is on Wednesday evening, I’m looking forward to seeing how it plays.