Communication is where a film lives and dies. It is essential for efficacy, for performance, and ultimately for translating a director’s vision to the screen.
To me communication is less about the art of talking than it is about the art of listening. I hired an all-female crew on Band Aid, which was deliberate on many fronts, one of which was rooted in this very issue. At the risk of over simplifying, women, by and large, are excellent communicators. Which is to say, they excel at the art of listening.
On our first day of production, I gave a brief state of the union (which was inevitably followed by a brief dance party, a must on day one…) in which I spoke about, among other things, the impact of words.
For me, the greatest communication challenge that I encountered while working on my film happened during the prep phase, where I was still scrambling to raise funds and cast my leads. This was my first feature and a lot of people just weren’t sure of me yet. And short of surgically implanting someone into my head, it was nearly impossible to convey to them how the film was going to feel different than just what they could read on the page. I knew from the onset that I wanted to make a stylized film and you can obviously show people a million images of things that inspire you or are in the vein of what you’re going for but the actual result of what you’re trying to do doesn’t really exist yet, so it can be very difficult to explain.