Sunday, 7 October 2007

Those that can, do, those that can't...

The director phoned me on Friday and gave me an update about the second draft of the Short script. Good news and bad news, he said. I think the good news was that he was ignoring what his tutor had told him and wasn't canning me as the writer..!

The bad news was that his tutor hated the script and didn't like the genre and pretty much bagged out the rest of it too. Apparently this was after reading only one and a half pages of the script and skim-reading the rest of it. Bearing in mind that this Short isn't going to be made as part of the School program, I'm not sure what this 'tutor's' problem is. Surely the main aspect of a film school is to see how the student (director) makes a film; it shouldn't matter what the genre is, just that the end result is a competant piece. But apparently not.

So, the result of the phone call was to lengthen the script to approx. 15 pages, include more of a back story for the female lead (femme fatale), the bad guy and how he traced the female lead, and how the drug effects her. The director also asked me to include more visual shots, I said OK, but really think that that sort of cinematic nuance is down to the director him/herself.

After making notes and then leaving the thing (telling myself that I'd mull it over and produce another draft within the week), I was drawn to the laptop at about 9pm and stayed there until 5am working on it! Brilliant. Well done Andy for leaving it alone for a while.

The result (I think) wasn't too bad. The female lead's back story confirming her as a bit (quite a lot, actually) of a man-eater worked well, as did the process the bad guy took to trace her down and trap her into what he wanted doing. The surreal drug-induced scene may need work, as I've never been in that state and have no experience to work from. It'll either be seen as suitably strange and wierd or just plain stooooopid.

I suspect that the 'tutor' will hate it.

I don't know who the tutor is, or what his/her credentials are, but their opinion seems to be a little harsh, mainly because he doesn't like the genre the director has decided to use. But that's not really my concern. Even if this Short doesn't get made (or made without my further input), I've already gained experience in working in collaboration with someone I have never met and don't know. As far as I'm concerned I'm in a win-win situation. That's not to say that I wouldn't be very happy if the Short is made (and made well) and that I have something physical to show as part of my starting catalogue of work.

Oh, and by the way, I went to bed early last night and slept a loooong time.

Mmmm. Sleep...

5 comments:

potdoll said...

I wonder if it's not the director this tutor doesn't like?

Jon Peacey said...

My experience of film school type stuff (2 years of it, circumstance prevented the 3rd) tells me that film-making tutors tend to discourage certain genre efforts such as film noir because they are already heavily visually codified, can lead to pastiche and therefore preclude the development of a director's personal visual style. In the same way as a writer atempting to do Tarantino is merely aping Tarantino rather than developing their own authorial 'voice'.

Hope that made sense and didn't sound too 'up miself'!

Andy Goodman said...

potdoll - yep, the tutor may think what I've written is sh*t, if that's what your getting at, or he may just hate noir.

If he hate's the writing that's one thing, but to disregard a piece simply because it's considered out-dated, I think, is blinkered to the point of being an asshole.

I had too much of this 'my opinion is right because I'm a tutor and your the student' when I was doing English 'A' level. If anyone dared to have an opinion of their own that didn't mirror that of the tutor were beaten with low marks until they learnt the error of their ways.

potdoll said...

I meant that it sounded like the tutor was having a dig at the director. He can't dislike the script if he's only read a page and a half. Out of respect for the director he should have read the whole of the script to advise etc. but he hasn't. therefore it sounds like he doesn't like the director. don't make much sense do i...

Andy Goodman said...

Yep, there may be a lot more going on behind the scenes than I know.