Filmmaking School: A Year Long Journey
None of them had any filmmaking experience, and even fewer had any interest. This is high school, after all, and not just any high school. These are students from a socio-disadvantaged location. There isn’t even a theatre in town. These kids just don’t care about film. So, why am I here? Good question.
Their board of directors saw something worthwhile in bringing a filmmaking program into their school. We can learn so much making movies. So much.
Myself and another mentor spent 90 minutes several times a week for the first few months teaching the foundation of filmmaking. Starting with ideas, writing the scripts, voting on the top three and moving forward from there. It was a whirlwind. I’m sure they only absorbed a fraction of what we put out there. It was down and dirty, after all. We followed a protocol, with obvious deviation as necessary. We didn’t spend a lot of time trying to crunch small matters. We went after big picture concepts and ideas. We asked them to do their best. The group voted on three scripts and the writers began rewrites as the rest of the class learned equipment. Lights. Camera. Sound. Production design. Scheduling. Slating. After Christmas break, we began production. We’re several weeks into production and these young people are killing it. We’re shooting the three stories – with the kids doing everything from props and acting to camera and editing. Yes, we’re guiding them every step of the way. It’s a ton of work, but watching them step up, gain confidence, communicate, problem solve, collaborate, laugh and enjoy themselves is so rewarding. Check back — more to come.