Thursday, January 22, 2009

The Trip to L.A. - Filming and a Decision

So, this past weekend we filmed on Super 8 and 16mm (Super 8 was Saturday, 16 on Sunday).  It was a good two days.

There were a few issues...

For example, the trailer we were using with all the grip equipment was a bit too heavy for the Hills:

Once the trailer was finally in place we started shooting.  The shoot went quite well, though there were some interesting camera set-ups:

That would be me, in a tree, on the side of a very steep hill.  The tree is the only thing between myself and a slide downward.

Thanks gravity!

Anyway, the shoot went quite well.  I LOVE shooting on 16mm.  I'd forgotten how good that felt.

We didn't get everything we needed, but we plan to shoot this weekend as well (depending on the weather).

Check out my facebook for more photos from the shoot, all taken by Patrick McEveety.

Now, as to my decision...

I've decided that L.A. is no place for me.  I'm sure I'll be out here for work, or to potentially talk to a network about a show; but this is no place for me.

The traffic is horrendous, the place is altogether too big (takes too long to get from place to place), there's smog to deal with (my bronchial asthma will probably come back hardcore if I breath in too much of this crap), and I don't really like the way business generally runs.

The way it seems to work is this, you work every angle, connive, lie, cheat, and steal until someone takes notice of you and gives you a shot.  You try your best to get on a project that is going to be huge (or at least has the potential) in the meager hope that it takes you along for the ride.

While I understand that's part of the "business" of film, it's not the only part.  One of the guys I'm staying with pulled out the old line, "this isn't show 'friends', it's show 'business'!"

Frankly, that's bullshit.

There are a ton of successful actors, producers, and filmmakers that are FRIENDS and business partners at the same damn time.

If you can't see yourself as being friends with someone, why in the hell are you trying to work with them?

It's not the way I do business.  That way leads to bitterness and broken promises.

Anyway, that's what I've got so far.  Another week in L.A., then back to the safety of shooting in North Carolina, where people don't threaten to call the cops on you for filming on an empty plot of land.

Maybe my friend Todd can show me a better side to this town when we meet up.  Probably not though.

William the Bloody Hometown Boy Redd

1 comment:

C. Hill said...

We'll be glad to have you back. The things you're saying apply to all kinds of performance art... I know countless examples from my branch. Plenty of musicians sign off on their town (or state, region, whatever) to fly off into one of the monolith towns. LA, NYC, you know... they're really the same for any art.

What happens is, none of these artists are native to the zone. The ones who've been there the longest develop an old salt kind of attitude, though they were born in Mississippi or Nebraska. The ones who've just arrived view themselves as a totally entitled "breath of fresh air." It becomes two simultaneous things... a war of cliches and a clawing, scrambling, "out of my way!"-ing drive to the illusory top.