Posted by: michellemuldoon | June 26, 2015

Demystifying Stunts: A Writer’s Perspective

We talk a big game in film. We talk about collaboration like the best of elite sports teams, but sometimes we deliver on it like the bottom dwellers in the standings. We talk about how much we need each other, but the minute a film is successful I often here phrases like “my film” and “I’m grateful for…”. Here’s the truth though, if one link in the chain isn’t on board with the vision, or isn’t committed to the finished content, then there is no such thing as success; no such thing as a good film.

Stunts 3

Last weekend Women In Film and Television Vancouver (WIFTV) offered a course called, Demystifying Stunts, a workshop with professional stuntwoman and stunt coordinator, Maja Aro. Guess what writer-friends, you should have gone to this.

Collaboration means working with others. Writers are the first stage of the production process. We set the stage for others to be successful at their role in the collaboration. If you don’t understand their language, know what they need to do to prepare, or can deliver the type of script that makes it easy for them to do their job, then you haven’t set the initial stage for success.

Spending the day with Maja and her husband Jeff Aro at their amazing home north of Britannia Beach in British Columbia (yes, their living room is a training facility with build in sprung floors, trampolines, and cable systems) then I wouldn’t know what they need from me to make their job easier.

Stunt Training Facility

Collaboration doesn’t mean doing your job and then passing it along to the next in line. That sounds too much like broken telephone to me, and we all know how that turns out. Collaboration means understanding how all the roles fit together like a jigsaw puzzle. The end goal is to produce a picture worthy of everyone’s efforts.

It takes a village to make a film. Shouldn’t we all speak the same language?

I can honestly tell you, this workshop will change the way I write action in my screenplays.

My advice to writers; take the workshops you think least applies to you. You’d be surprised what it does for the quality of your writing.

Howe Sound

By the way, this was the view from the deck at lunch time. This alone was worth the price of admission!

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