Tuesday, 5 January 2010

The Waiting Game

At the moment I'm in the stage of my job which I find hardest. I am working on projects speculatively - one of which is being considered by a major broadcaster in the UK. I'm hanging on for an answer - and I know that the film has a good chance of being commissioned. It means that I'm reticent to go for other shooting/directing jobs because I know that if and when the broadcaster commissions my film, they'll want me to start working on it straight away.

I know this difficult stage will soon be a distant memory. When I'm immersed in a project, it doesn't feel like a job. I work on observational documentaries, which means I spend a lot of time with whoever I'm filming. I like to get to know them, and to give them time to get to know me. It can be a hugely time consuming part of the process, but it's also hugely rewarding. When it works well, we learn to trust each other, and the film is better for it.

So when I think back to the people who have allowed me into their lives, sometimes for considerable lengths of time, that's when my job doesn't really feel like work at all. I feel privileged to have been allowed in to the personal lives of so many people.

I suppose most freelance film-makers find this stage of the job frustrating. I know that I need to hang on in there - but I'm itching to get started - I just need someone to fire the starting gun.

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