So I’m finally getting around to writing about this… but y’all should really know, because it was quite epic.
About a month ago I decided to take part in the Yukon Film Society’s annual film challenge.
We had 48 hours to make a 5 minute film.
You may think that’s a lot of time, but if you think that, you probably don’t have very much experience with filmmaking.
See, how the challenge works, is you are given a theme, or prop, or phrase that you have to incorporate into your film. Then you have to write the script, cast the actors, make a storyboard or at least plan a shot list, shoot the footage, watch (most) of the footage, pick out the best clips, edit it all together, find music, add all sound and music, write credits, add credits, and hope if you’re really efficient you may be able to catch some zzz’s along the way.
I think I slept a total of 5 hours that whole weekend. But, it was a hell of a lot of fun. And everything just kept getting funnier. At the end of the 48 hours I was honestly a little concerned that our short comedy would not actually be funny to those who were functioning off a normal amount of food and sleep.
We had six team members aka creative geniuses on our team, so as you can imagine it took a little while to decide on one story idea with all the epic options flying around. Upon finding out the 2015 theme: “Outdoors” to be incorporated through a shot of the outdoors or in dialogue or really whatever floats your creative boat- we mapped out about 7 different story ideas with setting, characters, arc etc. Then we voted it down to two, and then down to one. For some reason the common thread was “Ghost Girl”
Our ‘winning idea’ involved a new guy in the office that was being haunted by an office ghost that none of his colleagues could see: a frumpy girl in pajamas. However, when we did our auditions we decided to switch up the gender roles just for fun. And it just worked. It was like, ding ding ding, we have a winner, Alistair Maitland as the office ghost, wearing a donkey onesie and eating a lot of popcorn. So naturally, I became ‘office girl’ Jayden.
I’ve always loved acting. I thought for years I was going to double major in Creative Writing and Theatre, but as it happens I discovered Women’s and Gender Studies instead, which I am so grateful for. Anyway I still LOVE acting and theatre but I just haven’t done any for years! And I’d never done any film acting before. Luckily I had my awesome director pals, Nina and Naomi, there to give me pointers and make the experience all the more fun. Plus I had the best co-star a girl could ask for, and it was a film-acting debut for us both.
The film we ended up making is called “Suck it Up” and it was runner up for the Whitehorse audience choice award by 1 point- seriously just 1 vote-
The best part though, was that the comedic elements, really do work- it wasn’t just the lack of sleep talking. Everyone who has watched it has had a good ab work out, and laughed in the right moments, and in some cases even had to press pause to run to the loo. So, all in all, quite the success.
We talked about putting together a longer version and possibly submitting it to a few festivals, but we haven’t confirmed anything yet. I’ll let you know what happens- cuz I know you’re probably just dying to watch Suck it Up already. Soon, friends.
But, really I just wanted to say. If you have some equipment, a couple of free days, and some creative friends, anything is possible! So why not make a film this holiday!?
Love & Laughter.