Get It Signed!

Industry Creatives Testimonial Update – Chris Gill

Hi All,

While my current focus is on mastering this book, and building our community website (more on that in the coming weeks); I am still, of course, an active filmmaker.

I’ve had an interesting week. I’ve been working on a short video to play as a backdrop for a song when my favourite band, SPACE, play live. They’re a great group and their songs are one of my main creative influences.

I’ve so much on that I organised to shoot the short film while on holiday with friends, making it easy to find the time. In my book, I talk about the importance of pre-production and acting like a professional, and on this occassion I failed. I should DEFINITELY listen to my own advice more!

We were given permission to film at a location, everyone involved knew what the production was, what it involved and the logistics therein. Filming was completed at the location, and at various others, and then I edited the film. All in all, about two days work.

Job done? Not quite.

To save time, and as everyone involved was a friend, I didn’t bother getting rights forms signed. The main location was operated by friends, they gave permission, why worry?

Since filming everything though, and then editing everything, permission for a location has now been revoked. Word was originally given and then subsequently taken back. If we’d been told on the day, we’d have saved a days filming. Had I been told before editing, I’d have saved a days editing too.

Groan. It’s not my fault the person involved has decided to change their mind after giving permission, but it IS my fault to rely on someone’s word and not get paperwork signed. It’s a really simple error and something that I shouldn’t be making!!! Don’t make that mistake yourself.

In this case, the location is a bare stage and curtain, so it’s particuarly frustrating as you would never know where the location even was by looking at it!

In reality, we could probably use the footage anyway, permission was given at the time of filming and editing and a battle to stop us would be a challenge.

I made the decision though to find a positive in the negative and we’ve reshot the footage, making it a better film that it was. Yes, it’s a bit more work, but we’ve got a superior film.

So, don’t rely on the word of people (even your friends). It doesn’t matter if they’re teachers, bankers, lawyers or even a Priest: get documents signed and don’t rely on anybody’s word. This is one of the many areas I cover in my book, and I will even have document templates for you online, when “The Production Posse” is live.

Thanks for reading,
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SPACE really are an incredible band, you can check them out at: