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Sunday, July 10, 2005
The window of opportunity is open.

I HAVE FILM WORK!! Woo hoo!!

Back in the film school days, I NEVER, EVER thought I'd be happy working as a PA (Production Assistant, or Gopher). And for any of you who are in the "is it Smallville" mode, that show hasn't gone to camera yet, but who knows? To clear up any confusion about the whole subject, I'd like to bring up a few lessons learned from my money laundering scheme film school days.

1. Watch ALL (and yes, all) the credits when you go to the theatre to watch a film. To the point where the cheesey "slide-show" pre-pre-film advertising makes a re-appearence. Why? First off, as someone trying to forge a living working on films, it's only respectful to view the credits of all who worked on a film. Secondly, and more importantly, and here's the part you may want to pay attention to, ALL WANT THE DIRECTOR'S JOB.

And I, your 'umble writer, am no different. I want to direct also. I've written a pile of short films, and I'm getting to a point of wanting to shoot them. But, to make a living as a director, I have to shoot 2, and get them into recognized festivals, before any bodies in Canada with money will even LOOK at me. That will take some time. As such, I've listened to the next piece of advice...

2. Commit yourself to another discipline in film. Or get a day job. And since I'm overqualified for any day job less sales or designing anti-vibrational vehicle door and trunk engagement and hitch systems, I might as well do something with my $20,000+ education. After a long battle between Cinematography and Editing, I've chosen Cinematography professionally (hell there's too many computer geeks who've taught themselves AVID by pirating the software, so there's tons of independant competition). And in order to work in film in Cinematography/Camera/Lighting/Grip, you need to be in the union, as the following equation usually applies to film.

3. Union Jobs = Paid + fed well; whereas Independent film = Creative head screen credit + luke warm pizza + worst set coffee ever. Yup. Good old Scott told us that. 90% of set coffee is 100% thumbs down (as a note to film wannabe's, a stop at Tim Horton's before you reach set is mandatory). And having gone to school and being living in Toronto (at that time) where the number of union jobs has dropped dramatically (thanks to Mike Harris and Ah-nuld for messing that up) the union is barely letting the odd permittee back in it's doors.

In Toronto. However, in Vancouver, in the stunningly gorgeous and beautiful province of British Columbia, the exact opposite is true. So, as you all (well the regulars. For those of you who hit here from Blog Explosion and actually ARE reading... thank you BTW) we packed our things in my Cavalier, and drove 4,500 km (2,700 miles) across Canada to get here. I should have done it ages ago, except for something that somebody famous in Canada (old ski friend/instructor-ish) Nancy Greene (Canada's female athlete of the century btw) told me... it's not what you know, or who you know, but WHO knows you. And discovering a long lost cousin out here (as well as an Uncle) in the industry, the time was ripe.

Being here now, I've discovered something bizzare. I am, as again the frequent readers know, a Habs fan. Having my whole family (Mom's and Dad's sides) being from the Montreal area, it's in the blood. But I actually feel a dilemma.


But wait, I never, EVER had that issue in Toronto. Why? One could state the poor record of the Make Me Laughs Maple Leafs over the period I attached myself to the coolest game on earth (Bettman where's my plug money), the 80's. Over that decade, their best record was in 1989-90, where they had a record of 38-38-4. Just at .500. God they sucked. Every season they struggled, and only occasionally made the playoffs. But in the 90's they got better. So why didn't I cheer. I must have been loyal to Montreal. Even so, I couldn't cheer the Jays, the Argos, nor the [veloci-]Raptors. Something's gotta give. I can cheer the Lions, and soon the Canucks (as soon as the deal is signed). It can't be just that.

But over the last few days it's dawned on me. After our last CBA in the NHL, free agency ran rampid. The only Canadian team to benefit? Toronto. But why? Montreal and Vancouver are just as big. But yet I soon learned...

Toronto is the only city marketable in the United States. And when I say marketable, I really mean the only city Americans really know is in Canada.

And it all hits me today. I should have been here a long, long time ago. Why things didn't work out, well, simply put, Toronto is my negative centre. Everything I was, I achieved outside of that city. I did university away. I ran businesses away. Never in my life has being in a place felt so right. And to all those "Leaf Fans", who are gonna lose 1/2 their team because the Leafs are going to have shuffle to adhere to the cap, I have just this to say...

neolithic pondered at 02:44
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