Twitter Inspires Feature Filmmaking: #2wkfilm
When filmmaker Lucas McNelly joined Twitter, little did he realize that the popular social media tool would result in a challenge that would lead him to shoot a feature-length film in two weeks. Anyone who is the least bit familiar with film production knows that two weeks is barely enough time to come up with an idea, let alone actually implement that idea. Add budget concerns and constraints into the mix and the complications of working in and around peoples' schedules, and you can see that filmmaking on such a small scale is fraught with difficulties.
As McNelly relates in a recent article at Blogcritics, a common topic of conversation among the independent filmmakers who gather on Twitter is the difficulty of keeping a project moving forward in the face of all those obstacles (i.e. "this is why my current project is stuck"). The idea of steamrolling through those problems by just getting out there and doing it fast was tossed out as a joke, but as the discussion took hold, three of them eventually decided to take on the task of delivering a finished product, from first day of shooting to a fine cut, in two weeks, and so #2wkfilm was born.
The guidelines they agreed on were fairly simple: projects could be started at any time during the month of May, as long as the two weeks of shooting were completed by the end of the month; and the films had to be a minimum of 60 minutes in length. A filmmaker who got an early start at the beginning of May had a potential three weeks for pre-production.
McNelly, whose short film gravida has been an official selection at several film festivals, delivered a film titled Blanc de Blanc as his part of the #2wkfilm project. It's difficult to say what lies in the future for projects like this; a tiny or nonexistent budget and an insanely tight timeline leave no room for post-production polishing and the like. But if a casual conversation on Twitter can help to jump-start someone's creativity, that can't ever be a bad thing. Here are a couple of teasers for Blanc de Blanc: