Monday, May 05, 2008

The View From Here

These days, this is my vista on the making of "Mister Rogers & Me."

I'm in the back row of the edit emailing ("Do you have and would you please share photos from your trip to meet Mister Rogers at FCI?"), making notes ("Statistics? Biblical passages in text?"), and -- to be honest -- surfing the web.

Chris and I have exactly seventeen days to get our edit done for the May 23 Independent Film Week deadline. (I know I wrote in my last post that our deadline way May 5; that's when they began taking submissions. Also, I was being loose with the deadline to be sure we hit it.)

Tonight, we're cutting our visit to Bo Lozoff's Human Kindness Foundation. It's a segment that, quite frankly, we've been putting off for months.

Chris kept saying, "Man, I'm afraid to even look at it."

What we thought was going to be a brief, one-hour interview turned into an entire afternoon dining with Bo, his wife, and commune members, touring the grounds, and talking about super, crazy deep stuff.

When we got home, we had nearly eight hours of tape. When that tape was transcribed (which I paid two college student to do), it came out to 64 typed, single-spaced pages. That's a lot of footage to cut down to somewhere between 8-15 minutes.

Bo was the first stop on our road trip. Actually, he was the second stop on the the first trip, but he sets up "deep and simple" -- our thesis -- so nicely.

We're endeavoring to cut the first and last interviews (Bo and Davy Rothbart, which is already rough cut) plus the set up and conclusion to dazzle the IFP submission committee. So we couldn't put Bo off any longer.

Right now, Chris has it down to eighteen minutes.

It's interesting to watch him work. I wrote and recorded all the voice over in a very linear manner. That is, I basically set up and concluded each interview. Chris, though, thinks in some crazy inter-woven 3D puzzle. He thinks spatially. So he's tied the sit-down interviews, the walk-and-talk, and the graphics (photos, statistics, etc) into one, cohesive, layered story. It's way different from my vision, but more advanced.

And requisite. When you talk with anyone about anything for eight hours (heck, one hour) then try and boil it down to its essence, you gotta' cut somethin'. And you gotta' cover that cut with something too.

Anyway, it's approaching midnight. We've made a lot of progress. We've got almost thirty minutes. We're roughly 3/4 of the way home ... for the IFP submission, anyway. After that? More views from the back row of the edit. See ya' there!

No comments: