I love movies, but I'd never considered the possibility that I could be a part of making one. I had considered a lot of other things - photographer, writer, wilderness guide, ski instructor, scientist - but hadn't taken any large concrete steps toward any of them. There have been some baby steps, dipping my toes into them all, but never committing. Living my life like I have 300 possible years instead of a mere 80 or so, if I'm lucky. At some point, you have to stop talking and start doing if you are to have any hope of achieving anything of value.
So the husband wrote a screenplay and together we started Makeshift Film Group, LLC. I gradually got my old DSLR the repairs it needed and have begun carrying it around again instead of just using my phone. I've begun submitting pitches to magazines and working on a short story. My FAFSA is almost ready to submit, just to see if grad school is even a possibility. I'm even teaching skiing again with the goal of PSIA certification and eventually a renewed WFR cert so I can get back into guiding, too. Basically, we've decided to do all of it at once, for better or for worse.
I've spend the past 10 years working either directly in academic scientific research or in research support, so film is a pretty serious leap in a totally different direction. It's not just the art of film I have to learn about, but the business of it, as well. Actually, as the acting Vice President of the company and Production Manager of our first feature, it's my main focus. That and learning how to budget and schedule both a proof of concept and a feature film and teach myself how to use the associated software, write business plans for the company and film projects, somehow figure out how to calculate something resembling an ROI for the feature despite the elimination of affordable data acquisition (fuck you, Gracenote, for buying Baseline Studio Systems and jacking up the price of your data beyond our reach), and figuring out how to reach potential investors.
Meatwad analyzing my preliminary BLSS data before I realized we couldn't afford to buy what we really needed.
As film fans, Nick and I are both pretty frustrated by the endless parade of sequels and remakes and, increasingly, films based off of video games and even apps (Angry Birds? Really?). We intend to make a project that hearkens back to the goofy, fun movies of our youth - an homage/parody of those films, that recognizes the style and themes of the time while still acknowledging the realities of the business side of the film industry. This will not be a niche film, but rather a fun space adventure, that builds off of the past while maintaining it's own unique identity. Ultimately, it should be a lot of fun and make enough money that we can keep making films. That is the reality - if you are fortunate enough to find investors for a film, they have to make money off of your project if you ever hope to make another.
Business first, art later.
So, that's the goal. Or, goals. Thunder Lord is the feature, so keep an eye out for it. We'll be putting the proof of concept for it together first and maybe I'll even get something published along the way or teach your kids how to ski or maybe even take some nice photos that are of value to someone other than myself.
One thing I know is that I won't give up. The time for a passive existence is over and the time for active achievement has begun.
I shall no longer merely abide.