|Here I am at 11, making my first film!|
In junior high school, several friends joined with me to create outlines, scripts, costume designs and other elements of a Star Trek-like project that was never completed. It didn't matter, though. It really wasn't about finishing a film most of the time - it was about dreaming.
We did finish some films, though. One friend joined with me to create a film called The Little Vampire, featuring his little brother as a vampire-in-training who couldn't do anything right. We built a rickety coffin in my backyard, including a fishing-line contraption so that the lid would appear to rise by itself. Another fishing line effect involved the boy vampire (costumed in a blue cape made from my old bedspread) attempting to turn himself into a bat - and becoming a white dove, instead. Like all of my films of the time, this was a silent film with silent movie-style titles to represent dialogue. I actually attempted a rough soundtrack via an audio cassette, which sorta-kinda ran in sync with the movie.
The film was completed and toured: My home, for a screening for my family, and my friend's home, for a screening with his family. Then, it was on to the next project, and the film would rarely be seen again.
I've come to recognize my childhood filmmaking adventures as my team sport. We cared as much, and were as passionate as any ball player, but were doing it without much of an audience, and were entirely in our own world - and having a heck of a lot of fun! Even if we didn't finish half the films we started.
Like ballplayers say, it's not whether you win or lose...