Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Maximum Uncertainty

We're currently deep in pre-production for 'Mum and Dad' - and close to the stage of Maximum Uncertainty - we've been casting (but haven't yet cast anyone), we've found a location (but haven't yet secured it), we've had the script signed off (except I still need to redraft it) and we're still waiting for our first chunk of money (save some cash Lisa managed to wangle me to pay for my constant trips to London and back.) I'm yearning for the period of fatalistic calm that inevitably follows...

At the same time, we've been finishing off "Deliver Me'. Grant's been doing a great job on the sound design, keeping the low-key tone of the piece while still building up the intimate and creepy atmosphere, and Steve has given us his new music. The reference I gave to Steve was the score for a relentlessly miserable 1972 Aldo Ladi giallo called
'Who Saw Her Die?', by Ennio Morricone, and he's really flown with it. It's got quite a retro Italian feel - quite full-on, but in keeping with the tone of the piece. A good sign was that I've been finding myself humming it.

Also, in my odd moments when I want a break from both projects, I've been starting to script 'Damaged'. I'm about halfway through so far and it seems to be going okay - it's going to be a bit different to my previous films, still horror influenced but with a more complex structure and, hopefully, some emotional enagement (where that emotion isn't just disgust and repulsion.)

All of this work really feels like work at the moment, though. It's quite a slog getting through it and keeping myself upbeat. Casting sessions - where you have to repeat the same thing over and over again to different actors - are really hard for me sometimes (obviously, that's a comparative notion of 'really hard' - I mean it's not like I'm trying to defuse a bomb or anything, I just find the relentless need for me to be energetic and enthusisatic quite tiring. Maybe I should be like David Lynch and just not tell the actors a bloody thing.)

I just have to keep reminding myself that in a couple of weeks 'Deliver Me' will be done, 'M+D' will be too far down the line for me to stress about (beyond the usual levels of stress involved in making a film with a Lilliputian budget) and I'll have got a script - in some state or other - for 'Damaged'. So the things I'll have to think about will have shrunk to the size of a single feature shoot, rather than existing as some weird kind of mental Venn diagram.

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