I’m sure you’re wondering what I’ve been up to the last few months! The day after I returned from Colorado, I was hired on a production called Silent Life (IMDB), a silent movie that’s been in production for SIX YEARS! I started out as a 2nd Assistant Director and eventually moved up to the position of Production Coordinator. I was on set 16-20 hours a day for almost three weeks!! It was incredibly exhausting and stressful, but I repaid most of my GSD debts with the money I earned. I also learned a ton from the line producer and gained access to software and tools that will help me finish the documentary.
Here’s a story from Silent Life that you all will appreciate: Throughout our July documentary shoot, my crew members were constantly making fun of the typical Nubian goat call, a loud, obnoxious bellow that sounds like the goat itself is screaming “GOOOOOOAAAAAATTTTTTTT.” I walked onto set the first day of Silent Life in Altadena, CA (literally two days after coming back from Colorado) and immediately started hearing Nubian cries. Am I going crazy? Maybe I’m just hearing things after a month around Nubians, I thought. Lo-and-behold, the homeowners of this gorgeous Altadena home have a fully functional creamery in their backyard, with a couple dozen Nubians! The crew members were all very amused by the goats (and several took part in bottle feedings). Nubian breeders can agree – we were sure lucky that Silent Life is a silent film, or the whole movie would be filled with Nubian noises! We staged our production office in a bedroom in the house and my heart was warmed by all the “United Caprine News” issues and cheesemaking books. No matter where I go, dairy goats will always be in my life! Another Silent Life coincidence: the director’s last name, Kozlov, means goat in Russian!
A few days after Silent Life ended, I started working on a holiday made-for-TV movie called Naughty or Nice (IMDB) as Key Production Assistant. Naughty or Nice shot for 3 weeks and is supposed to air this holiday season. I’ll keep you updated and let you know when to look for it!
As soon as Naughty or Nice ended, I started working on the next round of Silent Life reshoots – this time at Warner Bros! I had a great time learning about working within the Hollywood studio system, gaining more and more and more producing knowledge and skills along the way.
When Silent Life ended, I quickly got back to work transcoding Goat Show Doc. This long and tedious process basically involves changing the files from the camera into files that the computer’s editing system can use. I went through hundreds and hundreds of hours of footage and it is just now complete! This is the first major step in post-production.
Another exciting development is that I hired an assistant editor! While I spend the rest of October and November transcribing all the footage and working on the story, Peter Brunet will be syncing all of our video files with our audio files, a process that is relatively straightforward with most narrative films, but that can be extremely complicated on a 3-camera documentary shoot (like ours).
When Peter is done with the dirty work and I have a better outline for the film, I’ll be able to start assembling the rough cut at the beginning of December. For the next several months, I’ll be spending the majority of my time crafting hundreds of hours of rough footage into a refined 1.5 hour story. Editing a documentary is quite a bit more complicated than editing a narrative movie because you’re essentially writing the script in post-production. It’s going to be a HUGE challenge, but I’m excited about the process.
This past weekend I spent three days at the Film Independent Forum, an annual conference for indie filmmakers in LA, like me! I spent all day in classes about documentary filmmaking and learned SO much from award-winning filmmakers, festival programmers and film financiers. There is so much for me to learn about the process and the industry, and in addition to spreading the dairy goat love, that is one great reason to be working on GSD.
Finally, big news regarding “GSD”: my crew and I have finally decided on a title for the film: Goat People. You can find our new IMDB page here: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2411848/ Though it never occurred to me before my non-goat-oriented crew brought it to my attention, dairy goat breeders across the U.S. affectionately refer to themselves as “Goat People.” I guess I just took this name for granted all my life and never noticed how special it is. The goat-owning community is unique, fascinating, diverse, and close-knit. I am glad to consider myself a “Goat Person” and am excited to declare and share my love in Goat People, my feature documentary debut.
Thank you for your continued support! More posts coming soon.