Filming is Harder Than You Think

Dandenong pest exterminatorFirst day of shooting, and I’m already fed up with movie making. I’m not giving up- that’d be a terrible way to finish an entire lifetime of ambition- but wow, they don’t teach you about any of this stuff in film school. Maybe that’s because this is an amateur production and I don’t have a producer dealing with all the petty details. It’s just me, the director, dealing with all the garbage, all the actors and makeup people…and other stuff.

But really, so much stuff that they can’t teach you in uni, because it just HAPPENS. We were supposed to be filming in an abandoned hay barn, but it turned out that the place was infested with termites. Had to call up the Dandenong based termite control place for a quote, then they said that the place wasn’t stable because of the termite damage. I had to then make the decision of whether to reschedule- again- or proceed and hope the whole thing didn’t just come down on our heads. In the end, I went for a combination of both. Had to switch the screenplay around so the girl playing Maya didn’t spend any time on the upper balcony, but instead came in through the side. Ruined some of the shot since she was supposed to be silhouetted in the sunlight streaming in through the upper window…but the alternative was her crashing through the floorboards, breaking a leg and never working with me again. Then the clouds came over the sun and our lighting was ruined anyway. The catering company got the wrong day. And then my lead had to act through severe mould allergies, so now every shot makes him look like he’s about to burst into tears.

Nightmare. It cannot be like this all the time, I’m sure. Though the owner of the barn should thank us for setting the Dandenong pest control people on the place before it was eaten away. Had a feeling something was wrong from our initial scouting.