In Which I Return to Blogging But Don't Talk Much About Screenwiting

If you’re ever trying to use the OS X Terminal to delete invisible files from a hidden folder that pretends the files aren’t even there, and you become convinced that it would be a good idea to type the following command:

rm -rv *

DON’T DO IT. You will spend the next 10 hours sitting at that computer running Data Recovery Software and hoping you don’t have to tell the guy who hired you to edit his documentary that you lost most of the footage through sheer stupidity.

This is a perfect segue into mentioning that I moved to LA six months ago and am scraping by a living in the film business through a combination of Production Assistant and Editing work.

I could go on about it, but that would be BO-RING.

I’m editing two feature movies right now—the one where I just lost all the footage (and that is now supplying me with the free time to write this post), and another one.

The Other One is a film shot by this Art Director I know. She said to me one day (truncated version of hybrid email/face-to-face conversation follows):

ART DIRECTOR: Hey, I made this short film. Wanna edit it for free? *
RYAN: Sure! What’s up with it?
ART DIRECTOR: It’s a half-hour drama about a woman who yells at a homeless lady and then feels bad about it, so she goes on a journey to find homeless lady and give her back something she dropped.
RYAN: Sounds EXCITING! I’m in.
ART DIRECTOR: OK.** Here’s the script. Don’t mind that it’s 45 pages long; that’s just because I’m not good at formatting a script.
RYAN: Cool. I’ll get right to it.

Almost needless to say at this point, her movie is not going to be 45 minutes long. It’s going to be more like 60 minutes long. Because while she was correct about her lack of formatting expertise, she was wrong in her assumption that this would make her movie SHORTER than the page count of the script.

So I called her back a couple days later and said: “Uhmmm … I’ve done eight pages worth of script and have 25 minutes worth of movie. I think this is going to be a feature.”

The awesome part of this story (to me), is that this lady actually shot a feature film, BUT DIDN’T REALIZE IT. She thought it was going to be 25-30 minutes. ACTUALLY AN HOUR. Awesome.

So now I’m editing a feature. And another feature.

If I can recover all this footage I deleted.


*Syntactical challenge: This sentence contains two word pairings that are difficult to pronounce. See if you can figure out which ones!
**Spelling note: I hate it when people spell the word: “OK.” But I recently learned that this is actually correct. The people who spell it “okay” are wrong. So now I’m trying to force myself to do it right, however painful.