Last year I went to the wedding of a great friend where other filmmakers also attended. One of these filmmakers/friend reminded me of a ‘crazy’ idea i had a few years back. The idea in question was the loose schedule for another (now ill-fated) feature film which consisted of a 2 week production period. I wonder what she’ll say about this: after an incredible 9 days of principle photography, my first feature film Indefinite has wrapped and is in the can! This is a literal statement, as i packed up all the 16mm rolls in their respective cans and posted them off to Sydney where Werner Winkelmann at NegLab handled the chemical processing. Now the developed film is heading to Complete Post in Melbourne where they will scan the celluloid into a digital format, before returning to Western Australia where the editing will begin!
What an experience and journey this film has taken me on – however the whole ride and life of the film would not have been possible without the skill and dedication of all the cast and crew involved. I am sincerely in debt to you and my words cannot express this enough. I honestly hope the experience was as good for you as it was for me. An extraordinary appreciation needs to be known and shown for my three main talent whom were more than willing to do an extended period of pre-production in order to reach into the souls of the characters they eventually became. Nina Deasley, Nima Raei and Ali Nazarpour worked with me for a hair under a year without knowing exactly what the storyline would be, instead delving into their characters background in depth. A massive, massive thank you for putting your time and faith in the method and making my job easy. You are 3 of the most professional actors ive had the pleasure of working with thus far. I know it’s inadequate but words fail me, so thank you.
Seeds for this project were sown a number of years back, however writing for this specific project only began in 2012. If i meet the schedule of releasing the film late this year, it would mean i have spent at least 3 years working on it but time really does fly when you’ve got your mind stuck in the middle of the whole process. Now this may sound corny, but the time flew so fast because the idea for the film came from something I’m passionate and interested about in my life, rather than originating from the need to make another film. But that’s a matter of life and how you choose to live it, rather than something exclusive to filmmaking. Do what you love. In relation to Indefinite, its probably the single biggest difference in how i approached it from a filmmaking perspective. I chose to cut loose from the confines of ‘how to make a movie’, and approach it more from a personal, real life experience. Now that explanation really does apply to many aspects of the project and i feel the film shows pieces of my life and where im headed dispite having nothing to do with me.
A negative aspect of such an encompassing pre-production was the fact that I didn’t want to watch any films in the lead up. I wanted to purely live with the characters in my story and not be influenced by anything that i watched the night before. My aim was to be truly in the moment when shooting, to be a part of the action, which hopefully translates to the audience. All this is extremely positive, but the negative aspect i spoke of is that i was missing some of the new releases i was dying to see. Since wrapping, I’ve really gone all out to catch up – becoming a very regular at Luna SX cinema in Fremantle. First and foremost i NEEDED to see 12 Years a Slave. Steve McQueen‘s first two features (Hunger & Shame) were absolute masterpieces – among the best. His third is definitely no less – it had me emotionally hooked the whole way through (yes, that includes the odd tear too!). Another reason why I rate it so highly is because my anticipation didn’t hinder it – as my anticipation for films have lead me to be underwhelmed in the past. Other new releases which i was eagerly awaiting included The Past, Blue Is the Warmest Color & The Great Beauty.