I have to confess I was more than a bit nervous about screening Justice Is Mind: Evidence at Olde Mistick Village Art Cinemas in Mystic, CT. Was I happy with the short film? Absolutely. But what were audiences going to think? At the end of the day, it’s not just important that I love Evidence audiences needed to enjoy it as well. For some, filmmaking may be vanity x10, but for me it’s about audiences appreciating the work. We weren’t screening at a film festival where this short was bunched with other shorts, we were screening before, then Oscar favorite, The Artist (I loved this film and was so happy it won for Best Picture).
As the credits for Evidence started to roll I walked down the aisle in controlled confidence with microphone in hand, “Are there any questions?” The moment of truth was less than two seconds away. To my relief, I was overjoyed by the enthusiasm and questions the audiences had. They were engaged, insightful and thoughtful. More importantly, they wanted to see the feature. Of our three screenings, I was joined by Toula Coin for the 2nd and 3rd. Toula played our wonderful news reporter and is a resident of the area. She made the introduction to the owner of the theatre to screen Evidence.
Screenwriters tend to create in vacuums. I can’t speak for others, but I generally write about subjects that appeal to me without much interaction. Then, after we complete our work, we pass it around to a trusted few for opinions. Feedback in hand, if we can, we produce the work and open it up to visual interpretation. Trust me, there is nothing more rewarding as a writer than seeing your work come to life on the big screen. Of course, there is nothing more terrifying as a writer than negative feedback. But as I’ve often said, this is not an industry for the thin skinned.
With our next stops for Evidence being the upcoming release by our distributor along with our first international screening in April at Olympus 2012 in London, UK and in May at Balticon 46 in Hunt Valley, Maryland, my efforts to secure funding for the feature film continue in earnest.
Our IndieGoGo crowdfunding campaign concluded with $2,330 raised by 20 funders! Not only do those contributions bring us that much closer to our goal to produce the feature, but that’s 20 more people we can count on in spreading the word. When I was talking to a fellow filmmaker in Kenya, Africa this morning via Skype we both talked about getting the word out for our respective projects. After all, every team needs its cheerleaders.
Indeed filmmaking is a commitment far past the popular phrase, “That’s a wrap!”