Happy New Year! We’re going to kick things off with an interview with Jin, the film’s producer and director.
We hope this interview brings you up to speed on the film’s progress, and some of the creative decisions Jin’s had to make over the course of creating the film.
What stage are you at in the film’s development?
Early post-production. This involves discussions with the video editor, firming up editorial lines, paper edits, visual pulls, and then producing a rough cut.
Have you achieved everything you wanted to with the film so far?
How has the film’s story developed during its creation? Have any new angles or ideas been thrown up that you’ve wanted to incorporate?
What has been the most difficult aspect of the film? What has been the easiest?
You mean besides not going insane with workload as producer-creative director-business owner? Well, ethical aspects of dealing with certain subject matter, combined with logistical aspects of making pre-production/production plans with an artist subject who marches to his own beat – that was a challenge that taught me to truly embrace the documentary filmmaking experience and respond accordingly! On the other hand, Zakii has generously given me an array of exciting personal photo archives for use in the film, all captured in very high digital quality – an amazing privilege.
What would you like to see happen in the near future?
Of course, a near-term goal is to get the film packaged as soon as possible. That means getting to picture lock, then putting all the bells and whistles on, such as desired colour grade, original music, captions and titles, and so on. Sign off poster artwork, too. To be presentable for the film festival rounds! But… before that, I’d follow up on distributor contacts who’ve asked to see the rough cut version…
Having said all this, getting the film shaped the way I want it is the priority – deadlines notwithstanding.
What have you learnt throughout the process?
That patience is a virtue! Hmmm…and that you can never have enough cloud storage space…. In our era of international projects and collaborative work models, virtual media sharing, discussions and back-ups is very much part of project flow. So it is with this film throughout. For the editing stage, using new technology beats the old method of sitting for hours over many days in a freezing basement surrounded by chunky editing machines. But you can’t get away from the face-to-face. For a film that dwells, among other things, on changing social values, my experience confirms the truth that we mustn’t forget the art of staying human.
What has been the most surprising aspect of the process?
What advice would you give to yourself at the start of the project?
What advice would you give to a young film maker starting out in their career?
I’m not in a position to do that! But maybe one thing I might suggest is: know yourself and therefore the kind of work you want to make, and the kind of filmmaker you want to be. Find your purpose.
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