The week before a big shoot is always the most nerve-wracking. You’d think it would be the actual week itself, what with the constant pressure from cast and crew alike not to end up making something terrible, but you’re usually so deep in the process – running around trying to find some gaffer tape to put one of your actors or a camera back together, for instance – that you rarely have the time to think about failure or second-guess yourself. That’s the producer’s job.
Talking as a writer and director five days before shooting commences on I Am Tim, now is the time when inadequacy strikes and I feel like everything I’ve written and planned has all been revealed to be unutterable shite and the curtain is about to be raised on my folly for the world to see, point and laugh at with sadistic glee.
But just when I’ve curled into the fetal position and the tears of fear are flowing, someone pokes me in the eye and reminds me that I’m also the producer and I need to keep the show moving or else it’ll be even worse than I’ve already made it. Besides, I’m only directing one episode, I didn’t write all of them and for christ’s sake how am I supposed to record sound too when I’m blubbing like a whale into my best Sunday frock?
Independent filmmaking solves the problem of indulgent worries like ‘is the script any good’ and ‘am I holding this camera upside down’ by forcing you to carry eight things at once and concentrate on doing what’s in front of you rather than fret about the undoable.
It’s always a bumpy ride. But it beats not doing it.