Film Courage: Can you explain the collaboration process between writers, directors and producers?
Mark Travis: Okay, I would add another category which is actors. Writers, directors, producers AND actors.
First of all, the whole process of making a film is a collaboration process, that if a writer didn’t want to collaborate they would write a novel. If a director didn’t want to collaborate they would do something else. In fact they might become a painter or something like that.
Storytelling through film is by design collaboration. The problem is there is so little collaboration that actually goes on or such an inefficient or effective collaboration going on. So there is collaboration but what we (Michael Hauge and I) are doing is with this process Beyond Collaboration (that’s what we’re calling it) is that we are addressing that collaboration process…(Watch the video interview on Youtube here).
Don’t defend and don’t try to argue it, ask questions.
Michael Hauge: One suggestion I would make because I do this all of the time is when I’m working with clients or when I’m in a situation where a script is being developed and all of those people are in the room together and that is when someone confronts you with an idea or an objection to something you have written, don’t defend and don’t try to argue it, ask questions. Questions are a very powerful tool in any aspect of collaboration I think. What you want to say to the director is:
When did you start feeling this way?
How do you see this character?
What made you say that?
Or try and get underneath the suggestion or the boneheaded comment because whatever they are saying, the truth of it is they had a negative emotional reaction to something in your script. And if they did, somebody else might…(Watch the video interview on Youtube here).
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