Saturday 7 November 2009
So where the fuck is my footage?
This is a sad but true fact, a lot of actors don't get their footage. This is how it goes.
Julie The Actress: "So, will I get a copy?"
Jonny The Director: "Yeah, of course. And it'll be in a lot of festivals."
Julie: "That's great!"
Jonny: "It's delayed a bit at the moment. I'm having trouble with the special effects."
Julie: "Okay, no problem."
Julie: "Hi Jonny, I've not heard from you in eight months, just wondering how the film is going?"
Julie: "Hi Jonny. I'm moving to L.A. next month. I really liked your film, and I really need some footage for my reel. Just send me anything. I did it for free, and I just want my scenes."
Jonny: "I'm so sorry I haven't been in touch. My Grandma was ill, and then I moved house. Things got a bit crazy."
Julie: "Okay, no worries. I understand. Could I get the footage?"
Now - I'm a Director. I'm not an actor. Luckily though, I have always been extremely good at getting actors their footage. I prefer to give them the finished film only, but in the past, if I've made a really bad short film that hasn't been completed, I make sure they get some footage. This is how it's meant to be.
But here's the strange thing, NO DIRECTOR EVER IDENTIFIES AS BEING THE ONE WHO DOESN'T GIVE OUT FOOTAGE. Yet EVERY upcoming actor I know is waiting on A LOT of footage, and most of it never comes. So, I'd really like us to find some of these Directors who never give out any footage -- and maybe we can come to a new understanding of why it happens. At the moment, Julie is left thinking "This guy is an asshole, he won't give anything." - but I want the Jonnys of this world to have a defence. If you are a Director who has ever failed to give an actor their work, or if you repeatedly do it - please let us know why. Are you ashamed of the work? Did the cat eat it? Are you waiting five years for financing to complete it? Genuinely, I think we'd all like to know what's going on.