We shot a conference today. I am always pleasantly surprised when the keynote speaker is interesting enough to keep me engaged in more than singing "Mama Mia" over and over in my head to the rhythm of the time code. One topic the speaker touched on particularly resonated with me. Though he was talking about a different area, I found myself applying it to my writing and film career, as it stands (currently on all fours, though we're working towards two legs).
He mentioned that he has always been a terrible fundraiser, because when he is asked the question "What would you do differently with our money that you are not able to do now?" his response has always been "Nothing. We're already doing what we want to do." His intent was not to say that they don't want funding, but that they plan to accomplish their goals with or without the extra cash. He stated that the best people to pay to perform a job are people that are already doing the job for free, because they like it. That way by paying them, you're taking the pressure off, and allowing them to make even more of an impact. Though this methodology does not work with every business model, I believe it applies to us. If we want to make films, we should make them. Funding or not, credits or not. If we are passionate, we are passionate. Perhaps someday someone with a rich uncle, or Harvey Weinstein himself will pay us to do what we want to do, but until then we continue to pursue our passion on our own.
This made me re-examine my priorities, to reconsider my motives for doing what we do. Sure, I love to make money. Do I want this to be my full time paying career? Absolutely. Is that my motivating factor? Absolutely not. We want to create films with a message, that share our artistic vision and allow us to exorcise pent-up creativity. We want to tell stories, weave legends, and live a passionate life. These things are not dependent on money, though its easy to convince yourself that they are. Obviously I will not say no to a budget that will greatly increase the production value of our films; heck, I'll actively seek one out if it suits us, but we will make our films without one if necessary. Whether we see our projects on the big screen in Hollywood, or crowded around our laptops with our families. Whether we affect only one person in our family, or one thousand in our city, or one million throughout the world, we are going to do this because we love it. Most of the time.