That is a wrap! Last Wednesday morning, we completed production for Namour, my first feature film. I’m still in disbelief.
The cast and crew that you see above are the people who made this happen. I couldn’t be happier with how everything went and once the dust has settled a bit, I look forward to diving into the post-production process.
You can see more photos and shenanigans from the Namourset on our Instagram — @namourfilm
"Normally we start rehearsals a month and a half before we start shooting, not only with the dialogue but also looking at the way the characters would hold an object, how they would move from one place to another. And the actors might also make suggestions. We shoot the script chronologically which gives the possibility for the characters to evolve and we feel out what works and what doesn’t. But we don’t improvise, because we have so much preparation time, we don’t say this is more or less what we want to tell in this scene so just improvise."
Some of you may have noticed that my daily Tumblr posts have dropped off to barely a post a week. The reason why is that I’ve started production for my first feature film, Namour.
This photo of our slate was taken on our first day of shooting, September 4, 2014, for our very first shot of the film.
It has taken so much to get here. If I think about it, I get teary. As so many of you know, filmmaking takes a lot of no’s, a few kind people to say yes, and a whole lot of persistence — at many times, more persistence than you think you have within you.
What I’m even more amazed about is the team of artists that we have working on the film. I’ll have to tell you more about them in another post, but I just wanted to say hello and that I’m currently in the director’s chair and learning a lot.
p.s. You can follow Namour's progress on Instagram, under the handle @NAMOURfilm. And we got a nice little shout out in Entertainment Weekly, announcing that we’ve started shooting.
The film language is the most elaborate, the most secret and the most invisible. A good script is a script that you don’t notice. It has vanished. It’s extremely interesting to write knowing that when you shoot it, what has written will go directly to the garbage. The script is the transmission between the ideas and the film, it’s the first form of the film, it’s not something final. Being a screenwriter is not the last step of a literary adventure but the first step of a film adventure.
Good work usually arises where the creators seem to have no ambitions towards gilt culture but are involved in a kind of squandering-beaverish endeavor that isn’t anywhere or for anything. A peculiar fact about termite-tapeworm-fungus-moss art is that it goes always forward eating its own boundaries, and, likely as not, leaves nothing in its path other than the signs of eager, industrious, unkempt activity.
"We were asked by Paramount, as one of the conditions to shooting in B&W… to also deliver a color version, so I was restricted from using B&W film stock…We ended up shooting digital because my digital intermediate process in post was supposed to emulate the look of film stock… I’ve told everybody it’s digital, but a lot of people assume it’s black and white [film stock].”
"I don’t relate to standard psychologizing in novels. I don’t really believe that the backstory is the story you need. And I don’t believe it’s more like life to get it—the buildup of “character” through psychological and family history, the whole idea of “knowing what the character wants.” People in real life so often do not know what they want. People trick themselves, lie to themselves, fool themselves. It’s called survival, and self-mythology. I wanted to create a person who felt in her thinking how I think a person might actually think, but through literary language, mine, not stream of consciousness (with all due respect for those experiments), and maybe that’s one trick of it. …
Certain films can help for that, too, in terms of understanding how multiple conversations at a table, or in a room, can take place and remain separate, and dissonant, and also gather themselves, accidentally, into a collective rhythm and an affect. Altman is very good at that, for instance. So is Jean Renoir.”
"I don’t approach a film with an idea of making it about a certain theme. Personal experiences or figures or constellations of individuals are what interest me. Journalists have to condense these things and write about them in a catchy way, but that’s not how art works. Most catchy phrases are generalizations, because that’s the only way. The minute something can be described with a single term, it’s dead artistically. Nothing living is left, and there’s no reason to watch the film. That’s always the problem with an artistic statement and an article about it. When you watch a film without any prior knowledge, it’s much more contradictory and complex. Amour involves a thousand different things, and when I emphasize one of them, I reduce all the others.”