My Mission: Why do I make films?

Nicholas R Wootton

I make films because it satisfies my craving for artistic expression.

I make films because when I am done I have an artistic product that can live beyond me and be a lasting contribution to the world after my ashes have been scattered to the wind.

I make films because for me it is the most natural and satisfying medium for synthesizing and communicating my ideas. For some it is dancing. For others it is painting, or writing, or music. For me, it is film, and every part of the filmmaking process, from getting an idea for a story to the final stages of editing.

I make films because I love acting, as an art and a craft. I am amazed how a talented actor can bring words on a page to life, can make manifest the ideas that are hidden within the script and make a story more than what it appears to be in the screenplay. I love working with people who can bring my story to life.

I make films because I love collaborating with other artists. Movies almost always bring together artists from so many other disciplines, who must channel their individual efforts towards a communal artistic goal. I love working amongst these artists, helping them express themselves, and getting their help in making my expression better than it would be without them.

I make films because I love collaborating with other technicians: sound recorders, photographers, videographers, gaffers, lighting specialists, script supervisors, location managers, etc. These technical staff are absolutely essential to a film, and I love the technical skill and knowledge they apply to achieving an artistic end. I love the logistics necessary to support and organize their work.

I make films because I love the process of managing and organizing a film shoot, and coordinating the resources necessary to make a film shoot happen. The days leading up to a shoot involve a blizzard of phone calls, emails, errands, meetings, and I love every minute of it.

I make films because what I can achieve with all these collaborators is so much greater than anything I can do alone. Filmmaking necessarily involves arguments and compromises, persuasion and pressure, losing a little to gain a lot. I don’t like compromising my artistic vision, but the overall process always producers something better than what I would do on my own.

And I make films because every time I make one I ask others to work extremely hard for long hours and sometimes for no pay … and every time they thank me for the opportunity. I love creating that opportunity for others to express themselves, to realize their artistic vision, to be involved with something greater than they what would do alone. It is gratifying beyond words to see the pleasure and joy others experience by working on my films.

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