Saturday, November 20, 2010

PS - I Can't Afford Your Fee Either - Response to Michele Serros

I do believe that the excerpt I read came from Latina Magazine, the magazine was fairly new at the time so they probably had no $ to pay your fee.

Wow, I forgot that our relationship started with me wanting to option Role Model Rule #3. As the myspace letter stated, I wanted to submit to AFI's Directing Workshop for Women (DWW). One of the requirements was a 5 page script. I like that story a lot, it's one of my favorites and it seemed appropriate for the entry. However, I chickened out and did not bother to apply.

On 11/18/2007, we wrapped production on two of the stories for Love 10 to 1. Read my other blog if you want to find out more I made the decision not to apply to the DWW because I did not feel ready. I started taking directing and acting classes focusing on working with actors. I had taken enough technical classes through the Extension program at UCLA. I needed to work on finding my voice as a filmmaker. We filmed Love Song in June of 2008.

On a technical level, the Love Song shoot went smoother than the previous two. I faced personal challenges while making that film and there are many things I wish I could do over but once you say CUT, you rarely get to go back. I was going through a divorce, the company I had worked for since arriving in LA was closing and my mother was sick. Making that film is what kept me sane. I cashed out my 401K to get the film made. I know Suze Orman would not approve but when the economy went kaput in September 2008 I would have lost 85% of that money, at least I have a film to show for it. I used the rest of the money to spend my unemployed summer in NY.

Last week I downloaded the application to apply to AFI's DWW. As you were typing your response to my first blog, I was probably downloading the application. I feel ready for that challenge. Yes, I am aware of the fierce competition but I have nothing to lose, well, ok, it costs $100 to apply but that's chump change in the piggy bank of following my bliss.

I have a strong connection to The Big Deal. When I first read it, it reminded me of the experience of bringing the tattooed, long haired, half Jewish boyfriend who sang in a metal band to meet my Dominican, Catholic parents. Through the years the story has taken a different meaning, especially after my mother got sick. What I love about The Big Deal is that the subtext is so strong. I'm not sure how you felt about it as you were writing it but to me it's all about the absence of the mother and that's where I'm drawing a lot from. After my divorce, I wondered if I would get married again. I also wondered if my mother would be around to meet my future husband or if one of my Tias would be filling in for her.

I'm making your story as personal to me as possible in the hope of making a great film. I hate it when bad movies happen to great books. I want you and your fans to like it, or better yet, love it. Yes, that's a lot of pressure but I'm up to the challenge.

I can't afford your fee either

My mom and my husband Matt at our wedding. I am greatful that both my mom and my favorite tia were there. Check out Michele in the background.

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