Industry Talk #2: Creativity and Script Development

Moderator Mary Davies discussed with script editor Anita Voorham (Torino Film Lab), creative producer Titus Kreyenberg (unafilm) and filmmakers Fien Troch (Kid) and Fernando Guzzoni (Carne de perro) how a writer and creative producer can get a filmmaker’s script into a potentially filmable and fundable project, and the role of script developers compared to producers.

Industry talk panelists: (2nd left) Guzzoni, Kreyenberg, moderator Davies, Troch and Voorham.

Industry talk panelists: (2nd left) Guzzoni, Kreyenberg, moderator Davies, Troch and Voorham.

Filmmaker panelists Troch and Guzzoni took the producer’s role in helping the director-writer getting ideas on screen as an advisor, who believes in you and gives the needed artistic freedom. As an example, Troch’s producer got money from other film-related projects so he was able to support her projects without any financial friction getting the way of artistic vision.

Guzzoni worked with three producers on his first feature Carne de perro: “The most important thing is they respect your opinion and you can take the last decision on everything.”

Established film producer Titus Kreyenberg stressed that producers should get involved in script development as early on as possible. Open communication is crucial.

“If I get a script or treatment, I comment on it by typing my comments on the treatment. I always tell the writer/director: Read the comments, think about them and use them as a hint, if you’re stuck. Do whatever you like with them, but think about them”, Kreyenberg told on Sunday’s Industry talk.

Anita Voorham shared good experiences from Torino Film Lab: “Reason we call the Lab “script and pitch”, is because pitching really helps people figure out what their voice in the project is. That’s the most important thing for us, to really figure out the core connection between filmmaker and the project.”

Script consultants eg. in Torino Film Lab work in groups with other producers. Voorham advised that script consultants can be a safe way to develop the process in the short run, as producer’s have a much longer relationship with filmmaker.

Brussels-based Fien Troch developed a script at Cinéfondation residency in Paris where residents often read each other’s scripts. Pretty soon friendships were established and being truthful became harder.

“I think I needed 3 films to accept somebody to help me. It’s such a fragile process, that person beside you has to know how to approach the problem.”

Panelists also discussed cinema as an inspiration and a profession, how a producer can hope to limit the financially challenging vision of the filmmaker and the importance of exchanging imagery to get people lured in to your projects. According to Kreyenberg, producer’s role in post production is to help filmmaker achieve the final edit via creative discussion.

“Producer and director have to have the same vision. If the director loses it, producer’s job is to find it again and bring it back”, he added.

Sunday’s audience questions ranged from how to cope with the changing ideas of a filmmaker to developing a baby film industry like Sudan on international festival platforms, like the IFFR.

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