Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Why I Love Producing

In the midst of all my writing deadline stress last month, I produced a short comedy film for a friend. 11 scenes in 12 hours with 27 actors. Boom!

I smiled through the entire day, feeling like a superhero. Working on this project reminded me of all the reasons why I love producing short films. Here they are, in no particular order --

• I love problem solving

The producer's challenge: how to turn the first draft of the script into the first day of shooting. My analytical and detail-oriented mind enjoys breaking down a script into all the tiny challenges and tackling them one by one. I believe there's a way to do everything on a budget and checking things off my pre-production schedule is incredibly satisfying. Good traits for a producer to have!

My friend's script presented several challenges - multiple locations (including a conference room, which is always harder to find than it sounds), two dance sequences, and licensed music references. In the end, we did it all - a friend helped us with a conference room, we uploaded a video so the dancers could teach themselves the choreography, and we're hiring a composer to create vibe-alike music. Done and done!

• I love working with friends

The writer/director of this project was someone I've known since kindergarten, and helping him bring his vision into reality was wonderful. I was able to cast several actor friends, including my ex-boyfriend. It was great to have familiar faces on set - we had a blast!

Getting to share opportunities with people I love and play with them on set is such a joy. I can't wait to do more of it on a much larger scale!

(And I can't say this enough - if you're an actor, you MUST put your online resume link where your writer/producer/director friends can find it!)

• I love actors

Producing always restores my faith in actors. I cast more than 20 actors from LA Casting off their pictures and demo reels alone. Without meeting them at an audition, part of me had my fingers crossed they would all be professional, personable, and ready to work.

And boy, were they ever. Each and every actor I cast communicated with gratitude and excitement, showed up on set prepared and with a smile, and absolutely rocked their performance. Not a diva in sight - I can't wait to work with every single one of them again.

• I love having fun

Seriously, is there anything more fun than making movies? (Again, an important opinion for a producer to have...)

On this project, we introduced a sack of 99 Cent Only store props into a "Blurred Lines" parody, ran around back streets in North Hollywood wearing bad wigs and mustaches, and danced like Michael Jackson over and over. Who else gets to call that work?!

And the final piece of awesome -- this happened --

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