Do you ever feel down? Like no matter what you do you just can't seem to find a reason to go forward? Every time you try to start working on projects you use to love you find yourself unmotivated? That's how I've been feeling the past week or so. I think a large part of it was how hard I was working on my murder mystery film and now I'm working on a project that I'm not passionate about. It seems to have just drained all of my energy out of me. I know that in this field I will have to work for other people on their projects all the time but this just feels like death. A large part of it might be that I've been running this project and can already feel that I'm going to be pulling more than my weight on it. So much time and energy on something I don't care about for a school I don't care about. I want to make art. I want to create films.
I just saw Tom Hanks new film Bridge of Spies and it moved me. That is what films can be, what films should be. If I can find a way to get Austin next week I want to see Colin Hanks new doc about Tower Records as well. These are people who love telling stories and that's what we should all aspire to be like. I love working on my friends Davis Trent and Larry Stanley's films because they care about their work. They put time and energy into it, where as in this project where the guiding rule is to make it simple so that it can pass. Why make something if the only goal is to pass a class? Film is an art form, it is not a job. It's not something you do to pass a class or collect a check, it is something you do because you have to, because you have no choice. It is the only thing you can do, the only thing that makes you happy because if you aren't creating than you aren't alive.
My school life feels so hollow because everyone there treats film like a job, like a task that has to be finished and perfected. They view stories and characters as little more than a means to an end. Let's tell something that looks cool but has no heart. That is all anyone cares about here. They turn art into a chore and it makes me want to throw in the towel, I'm not going to lie. But at the same time I can't. Writing is the only thing that makes me feel alive. I honestly can't see myself doing anything else. It's who I am and I'm good at it. I just can't let the people around me tear me down because it seems to be their only goal in life.
So where have I been? Well my workshop class got rid of the group projects and assigned us solo projects again. Not to worry we managed to talk our teacher out of that idea but we had to do it by selling our souls. We are now working on a project that none of us really believe in under a director who doesn't know how to take charge. It will be interesting to see how it all turns out. You have to love how my one goal on this project was to not be a producer and yet now that is my only job. Oh joy.
On other news the project I've been working on that was supposed to be for the class is coming along nicely. It is about a murder mystery house. I won't give more away here but it is going to be pretty funny and my good friend Larry Stanley said he will help out as producer. My other friend Davis is coming on board as our DP so our crew is coming along nicely. Hopefully we can move into pre-production come January.
Last week was Back to the Future week. I loved that series, and the fact that we now live in the future is amazing. I mean we don't have flying cars or hoverboards but we do have shoes that lace themselves. Well we can't buy them yet but they are out there. I made not one but three podcasts about back to the future. You all should check them out!
The Uncanny Fans
So Monday was an interesting day. I worked on the set of 11-22-64, the new mini series based off of the book by Stephen King staring James Franco. I was just a paid extra but it was really fun. I was a secret service agent. I spent a lot of time sitting around but it was still an experience I wouldn't change for the world. I even got to see James Franco, how cool is that?
After the first scene we filmed they took half of the group out side to keep filming but I was one of only two secret service agents forced to stay behind. Those of us left behind had to sit in the seats to make it look like the place was more full than it was. It was a long boring process but once that was done we all went to the waiting room. Everyone there was so nice and fun to talk to. They asked for 50 people to go be in the last scene they were filming that day. I tried to go but the girl right in front of me was stopped and we were all sent back due to them already having enough people.
As we were walking back down to the waiting room I saw a few people heading back up stairs and I got in line with them. Once back up top they asked for guys to be in the scene and me and one other guy got picked, to be fair I jumped at the chance, the other guy was sent back. I made it onto set and was in a scene with James Franco. It was so cool!
We go to school in order to get better at whatever it is we are trying to do in our lives. This is true and yet as a college student I can't help but feel that the farther into school we get the harder it is for us to work on our personal projects. I believe, and I know a lot of other people agree with me, that the best way to learn something is to go out and do it. Far too often we get lost in just trying to keep up with school that we forget to go and learn on our own. We lose track of what we are going to school for. After all, education in a given field isn't the end goal. The end goal is becoming skilled enough in a field that we can go out and make a living at it.
Jonathan Gutheinz vents about everything under the sun.