Today we will make a decision. There is a great story on the DVD extras for the film JAWS where one of the producers, I forget which one – Zanuck or Brown – mentions that the studio kept wanting them to stop shooting and research a different location. The director [Spielberg], wanted to re-think the shark or something…and assorted other people wanted them to stop and re-group as things were not going as all had hoped. Here is the meat…the producers said, “No way….KEEP SHOOTING…No matter what.” They feared that if they stopped shooting the studio would pull the money or cancel the project. Now, that is not quite the same as our issue right now…we have no worry about money being pulled or the project being canceled…but, I still can’t help but feel like we need to keep moving! Now! I am ready to shoot. I am 8 pages away from finishing my notes/shot list, the actors are ready and the crew is ready. We need to pull the trigger, make a location decision and get on with it….and that we will! This afternoon we meet via conference call to do just that with our fellow producers, Chris and Denise. God’s timing is always perfect and we will continue to pray for his wisdom and guidance…but, I do feel He is telling us to move forward and Brent feels the same way.
We have been waiting now for almost two months for the Indian government to process our permit. They are in no hurry…apparently. This was supposed to take three weeks….Oh well! Now it is time to push the issue and get an answer. They can say NO….They truly can. They have the power to say we cannot make this film there. What they can’t do is stop something that God wants to happen. If HE does, it will happen. If HE doesn’t, then it is because he has something else BETTER in mind. That has been how we have lived with this project from the beginning. It is now and has always been God’s project to do with as He alone sees fit. We are truly trying to be His hands and His feet…not his brain. We have a limited view of all of this and God can see everything…so, it would be silly for us to try and fill that role or to pretend we can control the permit process. We cannot….but, we can make choices after praying about them and feeling a certain peace about them…and move forward. I never re-read these blogs. If I did I would stop writing all together…but, I can’t help feeling like I just used to two large paragraphs to say a four or five word sentence. Oh my.
Just keep writing…just keep shooting. Same thing…right?
Let’s see….what else? Don Harper listened to all of Jonathan’s songs and really liked them…as I hoped he would. We will be meeting with him to figure out a plan for the score. My goal is to not have a soundtrack AND a score…but, to have one living, breathing, 2 plus hour entity that moves, pushes, demands and compels people to go with us…and to take this journey with Ezekiel. After all, that is WHY we are making this film. To try, in some small way, to make our world a little bit better for those people who have seen way too much of the bad side of humanity. This is our opportunity to show them some of the good…God’s grace lived out, not just talked about. They have been talked to death literally…some of them. I am of the mind frame that we as Christians should not talk nearly as much…instead, we should be what we profess. I am sure that is Biblical…though I could not tell you where in the Bible it is found. Brent could though, so ask him next time you see him.
Jamie continues to work on the poster mock up. She has accepted a position and will be traveling with us to India…which makes me happy beyond words. Her spirit, skill and particular artistic aesthetic will be a tremendous benefit to this project. She brings an amazing depth of talent and is fun to be around to boot. That is a “good hire” as they say…not sure who says that actually. Bev continues to be helpful in ways beyond her job description. She sent Brent an email regarding a possible alternate location for filming the other day…that is the type of person God has brought to help with this project. Abe continues to research camera/format options – we are still discussing the RED camera, 35MM 2 perf [used on old spaghetti westerns and American Graffiti – very cool format], Canon D5/D7 or is it 5D/7D – I always get them confused – which are still cameras that shoot HD video …anyway, he is doing that while working other jobs making a living! Steven and Alan continue to try to figure out ways to give me what I want/need as far as gear and people go. Etc..Etc…Etc…I love all of these guys. They are truly gifts from God and we are incredibly lucky and blessed to have the crew we have. People who care so much about making this an amazing film.
I will, as always, report back about our meeting today. I ask you to continue praying for the film, the permits, the actors, the locations, the cameras, the graphics etc. And speaking of prayer, I got an email from Bali, our prayer coordinator, earlier this week. Seems the prayer people [an odd way to address them. We need a name for them, any suggestions?]…put all of our names in a hat and drew names to pick individual prayer partners for each crew member…Bali drew me! Lucky for me…she has a direct line to God I am certain. I told my wife and she was also thrilled. It is so great to know that people who care about this project and want it to succeed, are so willing to give of their time to pray for the film, to petition God for grace and good favor on this project. These people do not get paid, do not get recognized…but, are still willing to be involved. I feel a pressure to live up to being worthy of their time…even though I never can. So, instead I will be immensely grateful and feel lucky to have covering against the enemy who so clearly has been trying to derail this project. One day, in a few years from now, long after the film has come out and the smoke has cleared…come and find me and ask me about the last year of writing this film. I will tell you a story of God’s infinite grace and wisdom shown through various people, in the midst of Satan’s blatant attempts to derail this project almost weekly. God is driving and that is a good thing because, if I was at the wheel…anyone see the Roger Corman produced film “Death Race 2000?” I would have amassed more points than anyone in history.
Be well and please don’t hold it against me if this blog amounts to a mess of incomprehensible babble… Blame Jessica.
I will leave you with this: don’t stop shooting…writing…praying…and trusting God that He, in fact, DOES know you better than anyone else and DOES have your best interest in mind…ALWAYS. Something I have to constantly remind myself of and, even though I know it to be true…still struggle daily to live it.
Oh my word. What was this blog about?