“Acclaimed filmmaker Ridley Scott told young filmmakers Monday night that they had “no excuses” not to be able to go out and make a movie. Speaking at a special BAFTA: A Life in Pictures event celebrating his career, Scott said the availability of modern technologies, such as digital cameras and computer editing programs, meant many barriers to making a film had fallen and that if aspiring filmmakers really wanted to follow in his footsteps they should “go out and make a movie this weekend or stop moaning.”
But he said aspiring filmmakers needed to be prepared to work hard or they should try something else. “There are a lot of them now,” said Scott. “I think they think it’s going to be all fun and parties. When I do a movie I’m shooting by 8:45 a.m. You have to or you’ll never catch up.”
Wise words from a wise man…one of the very best in our business. He deserves every accolade thrown at him. In LA a few days ago, I was lucky enough to visit a friend who works at his office and was able to see a little of his operation. It feels like the man, functional, innovative, creative and always interesting. I have never met him…would love to. His early background was in design, graphics and making commercials. He was having his early successes in the UK, just as I was starting my career. Here is his famous commercial for Hovis Bread.
And here is a link to the article about his speech given just after he received the BAFTA Fellowship Award. I do urge to read about him and whatever advice he gives…as an aspiring filmmaker..you won’t get better.
Having just finished shooting my latest short, I am happy and proud to say that we made it just the way he discusses, starting with a script with which we were pleased. Trying to make a scene work, when it’s not written well, is a nightmare and a huge time waster. Everyone in the crew in front of and behind the camera needs to know the story and where it is going. And if you are the writer have faith in your story and what you are trying to say. Certainly you can share it with people, but I would be wary. Others may not “get” what you’re trying to say, or think they can do it better, but you must stick to your story, the structure and the words and not be sidelined. That’s the beauty of make short inexpensive indie films, you don’t have to answer to studios, investors or anyone else. Of course you, the Director and the actors will want to discuss and hone, before you start shooting, Mike Tetro (Director), Austin von Austin (Actor) and I spent a day fine tuning the script for “About Andy”, but resist change for change’s sake.
And when you shoot …keep it simple, do really good prep (pre-production) and stay focused.
I don’t know if Ridley Scott has written a lot about his filmmaking, but if you are serious about making movies I urge you to read whatever he says and writes.
I was going to write a bit about the recent school shooting, but resisted, knowing there are those far better qualified. But I do admire and support the students who are resisting the current state of affairs.