Posted by Kelli Joan Bennett
Day 323 Year 2: This past weekend—November 16th & 17th—I attended Tom Provost’s 2-day seminar, Cinema Language: The Art of Storytelling. It was the perfect introduction for my headspace as a writer and creative producer who is in the middle of developing two films right now. It centered around Tom’s presentation on film grammar and using it to introduce your character and disclose information to the audience. He uses mostly popular films, a few obscure ones, and his directorial debut film The Presence, as case studies. His passion for cinema is palpable as he presents his knowledge, insights and experiences. I’m still digesting everything but I thoroughly enjoyed it!
After finishing my first words-on-paper draft of my screenplay the weekend prior on November 9th, (Day 314 Year 2), I finally got back on the development trail of The Botox Party, the second film on my 3-film slate. It has been long overdue for some serious developmental love—Screenwriter Cindy delivered a first draft over a year ago! Initially I had a good excuse because I pretty much went right into pre-pro on Collusions after that. But then it spiraled into a lack of inspiration and motivation to do the work as the year evaporated into a blur of editing on High School 911, mourning the movie making process, my niece’s graduation, and my Dad’s health issues which began over the summer and culminated in his diagnosis in August—all adding up to a year’s worth of pushing Botox to the back burner.
Well, no more! I don’t want to jinx it but I just had a big Botox breakthrough. One I believe was likely helped brought on by Tom’s class shifting and expanding my perspective on filmmaking. I’ll spare you the details—like I said, I don’t want to jinx it—but, when the clarity hit me I felt as free as Jesse Pinkman at the end of Breaking Bad’s series finale. It may be short lived as I’m sure Jesse’s euphoria probably would be if the show continued but, no matter. I’m in love with this project again! There’s still a ton of development to do on it but I can actually see a faint crack in the nut. Woo hoo!
I can’t linger too long in crack celebrations because I have a notes session with my writer in three days so I’d better keep cracking. But, I am reminded that in order to shift anything—an attitude, a relationship, a perception, a paradigm, a rewrite—you have to get out of your comfort zone. It takes fresh eyes, unheard information, a different take, an expanded sphere of influence, an open mind, and a willingness to let go of everything you think you already know so you can discover something new.“I know one thing: that I know nothing.” —Socratic Paradox
Until tomorrow, create from what you have…what you know, what you don’t know and what you will know.