For reasons too lengthy to go into, I've found myself back in school to get a degree in Film Studies. In some ways I'm just spinning my wheels, but a refresher will be very good for me and force me (and others) to be more analytical toward my work. One of my first assignments in my Film Production I class is to make a short film with no dialogue. This exercise is to help you tell your story with visuals, so you can't rely on the spoken word (voice overs are allowed, but I'm sticking to the letter of the law). It's essentially a silent film, something I've never done before.
Anyway, I thought it might be educational to post my progress on this assignment which may help others who are trying to do something similar. I also hope to get feedback from you, which can only help me to be a better filmmaker. The due date is June 24, so I had better get cracking.
The other criteria for this project is that you have to shoot it yourself, you can't star in it, and it can't be over five minutes. I have no problem with the first two items, and there is no way I even want to approach the five minute mark. I just don't have the time to craft a film of that length. I want my story to be about three minutes, which is will still be tough, but doable.
The first thing I needed was an idea and one came to me while getting out of the shower. Oddly enough, the bathroom is a place I often get inspired and this time was no different. I wanted to do something more character driven and less plot-heavy than my previous work, and I think I hit on it with Payoff, a short story that plays like the tail end of a prodigal daughter tale.
I wrote a first draft of the script pretty quickly, and it came in at just over two pages. It's all action (of course), which may mean that it plays longer than written. I should be able to get my three minutes with ease.
Read the screenplay for Payoff...
Please click on the above link, and feel free to give me your input below. My schedule is pretty compressed (casting and shooting next week), but I am always open to good ideas. I've had pretty good collaborative experiences when shooting, but have resisted this at the writing phase. Now's your chance to make a difference! Tell me what you like and why! Tell me what sucks and why! Just make sure you tell me!