Before you jump into BIG filmmaking projects, I recommend working with creative collaborators on weekend films and other, smaller projects. This helps you uncover everybody’s idiosyncrasies early on.
From this experience, you can better determine if anybody’s social imperfections (coupled with your own imperfections) will derail the possibility of collaborating on bigger projects.
A long time ago, I worked on a short movie with a guy. Long story short, I found out the guy was being untruthful about money. He had hired one of my friends to build our movie website. But he failed to pay as agreed. When confronted, he shared an outlandish story about Western Union sending the money to the incorrect address. This was completely stupid and untruthful.
Because he was a “friend,” I gave him the benefit of belief and dropped the subject.
Three years later, I found myself working with this guy again. And guess what? He figured out a way to steal a few thousand dollars from the movie budget. When confronted, he left Los Angeles for Kentucky or some other place. He emailed a few times, appologizing.
The point is – sometimes you uncover facts early on that could save headaches later. You need to have a forward thinking perspective. In small deals, when you have moments of friction, in the context of heated conversations, your colloborators will often say “This is not a big deal.”
But the truth is, small frustrations on small projects will be amplified on BIG projects to become BIG problems.
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