When the plan fails
What do you do? Panic? Cry? Point the blame? Of course not. A well prepared filmmaker has a plan for everything. Because we all know that wasted time usually ends up being money lost.
I had the opportunity to raise the funds to finish post on a project that I shot late last year, The 90 Minute Lunch. With help from my directing partner Joe Mesiano and producer Andrew Carroll we were locked and loaded to get on a plane and head east to Philadelphia for ADR and pickup shots.
When we arrived we went right from the airport to to meet with the editor. He had all the master clips that we shot as well as some notes that Joe had given him on some scene direction. We were guaranteed to have a picture locked edit for easy ingest into Pro Tools. Well, I will reference back to the title of this article. Did we have the finalized edit that we were promised? No. There were key lines missing from the assembly edit. Certain scenes where there was off-board sound to sync was not in sync. Also, he was on a PC workflow so the compatibility of my Final Cut to Pro Tools workflow wouldn’t work. Plus we had to have the final assembly for the sound engineer ASAP.
What do you do? I did what any self respecting filmmaker would do. I let the editor go. Got his EDL for his project file. Sat down to an empty Final Cut session and began to recreate the edit from my masters. I’ve been really trying to focus more on camera operating and DPing lately but what are you going to do when the opportunity to sink or swim is right in front of you. You swallow your pride and buckle down to the job at hand. No excuses. Look for a finalized film by June this summer.
Always have a plan. Although realize that the plan never stays on course and you always have to be quick on your feet to get the job done.