One of the greatest thrills in life…
by IAFT Mentor Frederick Bailey
One of the greatest things about making movies is watching your story as it grows.
First, in your random jottings as you develop the action of the storyline and the characters. And then as your material takes shape and you pump it into your laptop, you keep going over it again and again, looking for ways to improve it, asking yourself, Why isn’t it better? How can I make it perfect?!
But you stick with it and you see it through, and against all the odds it makes the big leap from your script onto the set, seeing the actors working with your lines, the crew setting up the shots you’ve been imagining for so long. You’re seeing it play out in reality! What an unbelievable sensation!
Then working through post-production when you’re laboriously piecing the whole thing together, adding music and visual effects…
And then of course when it takes the final plunge onto the screen, and you see your own vision—your own ideas and images and emotions—jumping out at you.
All the research you’ve done, the effort you’ve put in, and then you see your movie with other people, sitting in the dark watching the results of all your hard work… This is what makes movies so exciting. Seeing your imagination spring to vivid life. Seeing that individual creation of your own mind unspooling…it’s a thrill like no other in this life.
The acclaimed French director Francois Truffaut once said, “Film lovers are sick people.” You wonder if he was joking. Or if he really meant it. Making movies is an obsession, and it’s addictive. If that makes us sick people—well, it’s a beautiful and exhilarating ailment!