This exciting document landed in my inbox last night as I was leaving my office. It being January means I am trying (and failing) to create distance between work and non-work and thus thought best I resist reading the screenplay until the morning. What I have learned thus far about working on a film project is everything I do to switch off from work reminds me of the fact I am working on a film project: watch telly or a film – think about how it’s filmed; read a bit of Grace Jones’ biography – come across the chapter on HIV/AIDS; read another book – lead protagonist tried and failed to get into Sundance Film Festival; go for a jog – think about the Tanzanian Film Board. There is no escape! Hence the need to try and create boundaries. However this was the first draft! Of course I was going to read it immediately.
The good news is the screenplay is great. It is a first draft and there are things that need to be added/developed but it is still a fab first draft. If we took this to Tanzania we would have something to work with to make an excellent film. The way the Screenplay works for those of you new to the blog (where have you been? I’ve been musing since October) is: Leanne and I met with over 80 women, heard their stories and fudged them together to make a story. We then tested this story with groups of women in Miono and Bagamoyo and the women who are going to be in the film. Leanne then took our story and wrote the Screenplay. Because she can. Given we got back from a pretty full-on trip in December and Leanne produced this yesterday I am beginning to worry that she is getting enough sleep. I think we could both do with more sleep as my 3am Film Board thoughts are becoming a pain (US$1000 transferred, documents submitted in October and still no permit), hence the coffee in this pic, courtesy of Half Cup near the British Library.
But let’s focus on the positive! We have: a screenplay; a full crew; booked flights; confirmed accommodation; and to make matters even better, Charles confirmed today that Jackson (see here for more on the Kilo Hero) is signed on to be our driver for the shoot. Now we have to confirm the kit, prep the shooting schedule, and make back up plans so everything runs smoothly. Well as smoothly as possible.