May 22nd 2011 marks a year to the day that the cameras started rolling on Shadows of a Stranger. On this day last year we were somewhat nervously shooting what is part of the opening sequence to the film with the two Craigs. Quite fittingly, a year on and that is the scene that we’ve just been working on with the visual effects.
It’s probably unusual for films to have such a long post production period, although for the first six or seven months we were essentially just laying the groundwork by editing the rough cut. It is only now, as we create the dimensions of the Meridian environment, that the scenes are truly coming to life.
Although we can’t wait to get this film out there into the world, I think that all this time we’re spending on it is helping to define the sort of film this is going to be, one that has been meticulously planned and refined ever since I sat at the computer writing it all those years ago. Every decision we make with this project is done with plenty of careful consideration. I hope that this time spent will ultimately give us a film of substance rather than something that was just pulled out of the air and hastily thrown together. I think the attitudes and spirit in which you make a film somehow shine through on the final product, no matter what the film is about. Hopefully people will perceive Shadows as a film that means something.
Of course, the slow rate of progress is also down to the fact that there is only a small amount of people working on it. This has its obvious downsides, but with the upsides it gives us total control over every aspect and gives for a more coordinated production. Whilst we have moved on to visual effects, we do have other aspects of post production that we’re juggling: calling actors back for ADR, taking photographs, scheduling pick ups. We also want to film more extras so that we can populate our scenes better. Some of these things we could easily overlook or feel we don’t have the stamina for, but our goal has still not changed, to make the best possible film we can.
So while I continue to post these blogs and we deliver our little Facebook updates and Tweets, all we can essentially say to people is "This is definitely going to be a good film, honest!" We’re still at the stage where we have little to show people to keep their interest sustained. Even though we’ve still got a long way to go, hopefully, however, next time I’m blogging I will have something exciting to reveal. And no, I’m not talking about the Susan Boyle sex tape.
The one question I’m asked most of all, the big question, is how long will it be before it’s finished? Well, it is a difficult one to gauge still. I don’t think we’re going to make our initial goal to release it for Christmas 2011, but I hope it won't be too far into 2012 when you’ll get to see it. Certainly by this day next year eh?