Without doubt the most joyous shoot I’ve ever experienced was the one day shoot for ‘Love of Words’ the first film in the Joining Forces Campaign – an initiative designed to give veterans the chance to have new life experiences, possible alternate career avenues and enjoy a similar form of camaraderie and solidarity as known in their previous life in the forces...
The campaign is a thank you to our veterans. While at the same time, giving us filmmakers and actors the chance to do what we love. Furthermore, it gives us the chance to work alongside people who never see much as an obstacle, never give up on anything, no matter the circumstances and never slip into divides.
The animosity and negativity occasionally experienced on film sets can be one of the most destructive elements to any production. Of the many obstacles faced by the filmmaker, the human element is always the toughest. Either simple mistakes, the enormity of egos, or those certain people who just want to see things go wrong for others, can bring a film down. It’s the main reason directors work with the same crew time and time again. You build your army, your brothers and sisters, those you know you can rely on and trust, your family.
To be in the presence of a group of people who’ve suffered hardships we know nothing of; physical injuries, loss of comrades, missing limbs, (two of our crew were triple amputees) and others who’ve suffered, and still suffer, the cruellest wound of all, the psychological scars of PTSD, was a humbling experience. There was no room for egos to surface, no place for people to complain about being cold, being bored, not liking the food, all the petty grievances that can occur. We were in the presence of the most positive, proactive, modest and uplifting of people and it made it the best of all filmmaking experiences, the best of all days.
We’re fighting to bring more projects into fruition for the campaign; for filmmakers, for film, and for our servicemen and women who have fought so courageously for us, it’s the least we can do.
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