Marc Maurice: The Soundtrack

Marc Maurice has created an intriguing short film to submit to StillMotion for a contest. The StillMotion contest theme was __. Marc, who has been shooting weddings and “corporate films for companies without the budget / room for storytelling,” knocked one out of the park with this gem.

I’ve contacted Marc and we’re swapping messages about a conversation as time permits. In the mean time here’s a bit of backstory that Marc provided:

“The story-background of SOUNDTRACK OF MY LIFE was following the recommendation “to look for stories in your own life first”… it was about some of my own memories. The basic idea was coming out quickly after reading about the STILLMOTION contest, but then I invested quite some time into the script-details, working it out very similar to a song (intro, verse, chorus, bridge…), planning the scenes, gear, camera moves, equipment, props, sounds, etc., in a big spreadsheet (with NUMBERS so that I had it on the iPhone while shooting). Nicely prepared the reality turned out differently: we shot most of the film in a crazy time pressure due to the contest time-schedule. I believe people with their head on straight (incl. a part of myself) would have give the project up more than one time.

“I shot 50% of the film 7 hours before the edit was finished, because my lovely little actors arrived late from their holidays… no way to find others.

“Since we shot in our holidays in the homeland of my girlfriend, Portugal, we had good and bad points: we knew we’ll have beautiful places, but I could only take along a minimum of gear (7D, Glidecam, photo tripod, table dolly). Instead of my slider I just used the table dolly on a wooden board that I bought at a local store jn Portugal: I fixed it with a studioclamp on a photo-tripod! Sounds like MacGyver? No, no, in reality it didn’t work that cool, but in emergency situations…

“I finsighed the film 30 minutes before the deadline … no sleep, 6 a.m. in the morning, 2 hours(!!) before our flight back home… and guess what… the internet connection failed in our apartment! Uploading via iPhone? No chance! So we had 2 options: missing the flight and uploading from a friend or flying home, missing the contest deadline! We flew… Back home, a few hours later, I sent Patrick Moreau the film (and let him know what happened) just for their “possible personal enjoyment”. I didn’t expect to be listed … but he wrote me back and presented the film at the contest site while noting it won’t qualify for the main prizes… which was of course no problem at all… I was just happy to “somehow complete the project” and maybe get some constructive feedback!

“I learned so much at this point from the little SOUNDTRACK OF MY LIFE production:

– how fulfilling and motivating it is to work on something you really love
– don’t care about gear too much (actually I am known as the opposite)
– even wildly improvised scenes can work out beautifully
– better be fast with kids and entertain them well :-) GET TOYS / PRESENTS BEFORE!!
– you can work out so much in NO TIME if you stick to it
– preparing a very detailed script helps SO MUCH to put the puzzle pieces together in the end
– left out ideas (and I had to leave out quite a few because of the schedule) are not necessarily a problem
– show your personal work in the internet, socialize and enjoy critics and compliments
– go for the films you really want to do and go the clients who fit to your films.”

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