Well, hello! This is Daniel Menahem, producer of THE WATERHOLE, with my first KR7 Productions blog post. While Nathan (as chief writer and creative director) has been in charge of our blog, I plan on relieving him of writing duties for a few updates strictly from a producer’s perspective.
I want to share my filmmaking experience in more depth in the near future, but seeing as we have just screened THE WATERHOLE at the Festivus Film Festival (www.festivusfilmfestival.com), I thought I’d share with the readers the rollercoaster ride that was presenting our vision to the paying Denver public. Ok, rollercoaster ride maybe a bit of an exaggeration, but as most of you reading this who have created and then presented to an audience know, there is a certain high (and low) that comes with the experience.
First, a word about Festivus Film Festival (aka FFF). I cannot speak highly enough about the job that Jonathan, Tim and the FFF crew have done in creating a vibrant, eclectic festival catering equally to filmmakers and the audience. While all of our festival screening experiences have been great, this is the first festival that I had been intimately involved with. The 2011 edition of FFF offered a variety of categories (comedy, docs, music videos etc) all populated by quality films. In today’s market we are all competing for limited screen space, however it was refreshing to see such filmmaking talent that will definitely keep our KR7 Production humbled and inspired as we try and decide what project to bring to the screen next.
As far as the screening itself goes, well, I’m glad to report it was a surprisingly pleasant experience. Being that Denver is currently my hometown, I had many friends and colleagues in attendance, which always adds a new level of nervousness. As in past screenings, I made a point of not watching the film in the months leading to the screening, so to try and get as “fresh” of a look as possible (as fresh as possible after 200+ viewings.) The film is a character and dialogue-driven story with a very simple plot and there always exists the fear that the audience may not relate and grow restless. It was great to see and hear the reaction throughout the movie. People laughed and gasped in the “right” places, and the film definitely held their attention throughout.
The screening was held at the fantastic The Bug Theatre. A quaint and cozy little independent theater that one could have imagined had been there for many decades and many great films. It even had a bar inside, which always helps any screening, especially one with a film about a bar. We are always a bit nervous about the turn out, but the crowd steadily filled up all but a handful of seats. Per usual ritual, I stayed through the first couple of scenes until nerves got the best of me and I bailed to Patsy’s “the Oldest Italian Bar in Denver,” checking the time every few seconds until I felt safe enough for my return.
The Q&A can always be a dicey proposition, but that night we were treated to a stream of compliments and thoughtful observations about the story, the characters and the ramifications within the themes. There is nothing better than hearing “the characters felt so real, like people you actually know.” One female audience member stated that she loved the idea that this was a relationship movie from a guy’s perspective. I always take pride that every Q&A that we’ve had so far has gone over the time limit – people do get excited to discuss their thoughts and feelings. It’s nice to know that we’ve made a thought-provoking film.
There are many choices you need to make when making a film and while there are still many things we might have done different given a second chance, I think both Nathan and I are comfortable with what we’ve created. Our screening at the Festivus Film Festival in Denver certainly served to validate our creation. Now it’s on to the next project