Paul Hills’ weekly post production blog

Week 5.

Sitting in BAFTA waiting for a screening to start. In addition to development work and tentative post production, I am taking the time to catch up and see as many films as possible. Apart from the obvious ones like “Control” and “Atonement” I have enjoyed “4 Months. 3 weeks, 2 days”, a powerful Romanian film about abortion, and “Things we lost in the fire” an American film with a Danish director about drug addiction, very much.

We are now only up to slate 328 on the syncing. Again that is because we are waiting for picture to be transferred from film. Neil Harris at Midnight transfer regularly calls me on Sundays or late at night to ask questions about the grade so I know it is happening out of hours. It’s just happening slowly. At this rate I cannot anticipate any real editing taking place much before New Year. Rather than finish the film in June it now is thus looking like July at best.

As a way of trying to put a marker in the sand I have agreed with Caroline to start watching rushes together on the 20th December no matter what. At least that way she will have enough information to start the assembly during the holiday break.

The net result of course is that even though I have seen, I have still not heard the first shot of the first day on September 24th. That’s soon to be 3 months ago! Anyway, as I said before, at least that gives me perspective.

Robert Bresson said “I give birth to a film in my head, kill it on the page, the actors give birth to it again only for it to be killed again by the camera. Finally it is reborn again in the cutting room.” That final birth is becoming a long labour already!

Williams Rodriguez turned up last Saturday, or rather e mailed. He had been suffering from Salmonella. I don’t think he was hospitalised but I am not sure. I’ve still not actually seen him!

Anyway I tried to see him a number of times last week. The final one was on Friday. I had arranged to meet him at the Elephants Production office at 11.30am with Jonnie and Sarah. Come 2.15pm he had still not shown up and none of his mobiles were answering either. I had to leave for another meeting. So we signed cheques for the few invoices we had and I left to go to the meeting.

Mid way through the meeting Jonnie called me telling me Williams had just arrived in the office. It was 3.30pm. He was 4 hours late. Anyway, at least he arrived! He had the bank statements, chequebook and most of the invoices outstanding but not all of them. We will go through them next Friday.

What we still don’t have is the invoices paid. Those we need to be able to do the VAT reclaim that we so desperately need to do.

It’s disappointing about the delays you get in film-making, waiting for things to happen. The energy of the shooting and preparing are quite the opposite of the snails pace we are moving at now.

Anyway. we managed to select the stills down to about 28 out from the 115 we were down from last week. So now we have pretty much our keys stills to publicise the film. Indeed we already used one for a piece Screen International is doing on our film I think next week.

After the Screening I will go to a party at Seanne’s. I assume I’ll meet a lot of faces from the film, some of which will be eager for information about what happened to Williams…

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