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May 28, 2007 | by  | in Opinion | [ssba]

Idiot’s guide to Film Making

Good morning students! And good evening idiots! I base that greeting safely secure in the knowledge that most idiots will have taken around 12 hours to read this far into Salient. Twelve hours is half a day. Or one sleep for an idiot. Over the past weekend I have had none. You see I took part in this years 48 hours short film competition. It’s a competition where you have 48 hours to make a short film from scratch and it got me thinking. How long is 48 hours for an idiot? Probably the equivalent of six hours. So I thought today I would provide a rough guide as to how you, an idiot, can succeed in the film industry in the least time possible. Not only do these rules apply to the 48 hours competition, they also apply to every movie you could ever want to make.

Rule 1 – Cast and Crew

Only work with hot people. Now idiots have trouble with this sentence. You see hot has two meanings- physically attractive and intensely warm. It’s best to work with people who are both. Intensely cold people are what we in the real world call dead, and what idiots call, quiet friends. Attractive people make better movies- sure the Godfather Trilogy was okay- but just imagine if the cast of Ocean’s Thirteen was in it, wouldn’t that be fantastic? Now the crew will probably have to be ugly people, it’s almost unavoidable in the industry, so just try to get people who are less ugly than other crew people.

Rule 2- Financing

Being an idiot, you’re probably well on your way to getting a commerce degree so you probably already at least have an imagined knowledge about how to complete a movie budget. A simple rule of thumb is: SPEND OTHER PEOPLE’S MONEY. This rule applies in life as well. For the 48 hours I simply pretended I was broke and others usually coughed up with the cash. It’s the way Peter Jackson makes movies – looking at him you’d assume he’s incredibly poor – yet I am reliably informed that he has a bit of money in the bank. Alternatively you can do what Spielberg does and sell your flatmates stuff – it’s what TradeMe was invented for.

Rule 3 – Editing

You don’t need fancy editing software for your computer, or nerd box, just tape everything in the order you want it to appear. Ever noticed how the funniest bits of movies are the deleted scenes and goofs? Why waste time by putting them at end of movie or on the special features? Just leave them in. To paraphrase- your whole movie should, and indeed, must, be in real time. It’s the way Tarantino does it and it’s the way you must do it.

Rule 4 – Filming

Make sure you remember to film the movie. I know it seems unnecessary, but if you’re to join the ever swelling ranks of famous idiots you’ve got to make sure that this happens. While drinking copious amounts of alcohol is obviously important during the filming process, it’s also important to remember to film. Just like David Hasselhoff, you have to be prepared at all times to have a camera on you. In fact I thought that YouTube clip was probably his best work in years. If he doesn’t get at least one Oscar for it then there is no justice. So just carry a camera around with you everywhere, at work, at class, at court ordered alcoholic rehabilitation. You get the idea.

Rule 5 – Promotion

Now that you have filmed stuff, and in the correct order so you don’t have to edit, and with hot people whose consent you probably didn’t get, it’s time to sell your film. This is what the producer normally does, but we’ll pretend that’s you. Go to your local video store with a copy of your film on DVD (which is not a form of VD) and threaten to kick and scream unless they put it on their shelves. Then ring everyone you know, and invite them round to your place after rugby training so they can witness the world premier of (insert title of your film here, i.e. “Worst Film Ever”, or “I told you I was Special”). P.S. They may tell you they like it, but they probably don’t. And that’s all there is to it really. It’s worked for Russell Crowe and it can work for you. So go buy a bottle or two of bourbon and start filming today! Good luck Idiot!


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