Filmmaking is 90% waiting
In a January 1994 Premiere
magazine interview about the film The River Wild
, Kevin Bacon commented that he had worked with everybody in Hollywood or someone who's worked with them. Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon
is a parlour game based on the "six degrees of separation" concept, which posits that any two people on Earth are, on average, about six acquaintance links apart. That idea eventually morphed into this parlour game, wherein movie buffs challenge each other to find the shortest path between an arbitrary actor and veteran Hollywood character actor Kevin Bacon.
In 2004 I started work in the media industry, working on set on low budget shorts. Being part of a real film crew, lugging dollies up tight stairwells, adjusting lights, and of course making tea, is a great grounding in how everything works together. Classroom learning is no substitute for it.
Yes, some of the days are long - I worked a week of nights on a sitcom pilot that never took off - although the director and stars went on to big things. But the bonus is that at the 'everyone mucks in' end of the spectrum, a crew member sometimes gets a walk-on role. I had three forays in front of the camera in that period. In one I played a corpse
(!) and shared the screen with David Simeon. So if you follow the logic, and the image above, that gives me a Bacon Number of 3. Beat that!
You certainly learn that making moving pictures involves a lot
of waiting and setup time. And that is necessary to get things just right, even when dealing with professionals.
It can be the same in the world of corporate video production too, when the participants are usually amateurs in front of camera. This week a client said I had the 'patience of a saint' during numerous retakes, and that sentiment is not uncommon. It's contributed to the great testimonials
I've garnered. I've never seen the need to rush things through, from either mine or the client's perspective.
To be honest, so long as I don't have to lie perfectly still without breathing for over 30 seconds, everything else is a breeze.