Q & A – Part 1
I was recently lucky enough to have partaken in an interview, below is the first part. Have a read and learn more about what I’ve been up to recently!
How has it been getting back to work, post-pandemic?
At first it was a huge issue, costs and work flows were hugely hindered, insurance costs skyrocketed, the risks of productions being shut down or delayed were increasingly likely; every day lost is a huge cost.
Working conditions were hindered as each department was isolated, a film set operates at efficient capacity through interaction and collaboration. Additionally time was lost with daily covid tests for everyone on set.
But once the vaccines had been rolled out, things returned to similar pre covid filming conditions, at which point there was a waterfall of productions, I don’t remember it being so busy.
Tell us a little bit about your upcoming project
It’s a light hearted comedy, actually they’re light hearted comedies, we’re shooting two films back to back; Hellelujah Book One and Hellelujah Book Two, our confidence in the film means we’re shooting the sequel alongside the original.
The premise is two demons stuck in the Devil’s Summer House for 200 years, desperate to escape but unable to do so until they can get someone to replace them.
At the same time two tv film makers from an awful haunted house tv show turn up, after a tip off. Both groups are shocked to see each other, but quickly realise that they can exploit each other for their own needs.
Where did you get the ideas from?
Everything and anything, a small germ of an idea or theme pops into your head randomly, as it does to everyone, if it’s interesting it’ll roll around on your noggin for a while until characters, locales, jokes, story lines, etc. start emerging, then it makes sense to put pen to paper, or finger to keyboard.
What is your writing process like?
It used to be simple and crude, start on page one and bash it out. Since I started collaborating with my new writing partner, Sila Cetindag, I spend more time working on a structure, character development, motivations, stronger sub plots, checking the story has a strong arc, asking and answering the right questions, this will usually be done on a spreadsheet. Following that I’ll work on a treatment, this can take up to 40 – 50 pages. When happy with that, I’ll start putting it all together on a script.
After 1st draft you find the problems and inconsistencies, and start improving dialogue.
Basically continuing this until you feel confident that you can lock the script and start shooting.
For these two films, both locked at draft 15.
Did you collaborate with anyone during the writing process of this project?
Since my last film “For Love or Money”, I’ve started collaborating on all scripts with Sila Cetindag, an actress/writer from Turkey, as mentioned above, she’s brought aspects of the screenwriting process, that I’ve sorely lacked, I’m not sure why I tried being a lone screen writer in the past, perhaps hubris, but her collaboration has been invaluable.