Monday Aug 21, 2023

Lights, Camera, Story!

Telling Tales in Film and Television

What makes film a compelling storytelling medium?

How does film differ from a television series?

How has moviemaking changed over the years?

Our guest is Bill Sarine – Beachglass Films is a collaborative, creative-first company founded by brothers BIll and Douglas Sarine. We have a strong history of using our skillset to create high-quality entertainment. Our brand of creativity combines new strategies and technology with time-tested filmmaking expertise.

 

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All right.
Hey,
welcome everyone back to the Folk Tellers podcast.
Hey,
uh,
this is week Nine Lights,
camera story,
uh telling tales in film and television.
Uh Our usual introduction,
uh,
some people call me the space cowboy.
Uh This is uh Joseph Bastian and we're here with the abominable.
How do you spell that?
You know how to spell that?
Yeah.
Ok.
Kurt David is here and the,
uh hm,
I'm not the extra.
I heard you say the word A,
is this like the Canadian edition of the,
uh for you,
the podcast for the P A?
So,
so we're gonna talk about storytelling uh in film and in television and we have a very cool guest.
We'll bring on a little bit.
Um,
so I'll,
I'll start with this,
this quote.
Um If it's a good movie,
the Sound could go off and the audience would still have a pretty clear idea of what's going on.
And that's a quote from Alfred Hitchcock.
So,
what is it about film that makes it unique,
a unique storytelling medium?
I'll tee it up with that.
What do you think?
Yeah,
it's interesting because there are some parallels between television,
which is what I'm involved with in film.
And,
and I've heard that before and in fact,
I,
I practiced that before.
You watch a,
a show without the sound on to see what that body language looks like,
what the interaction the nonverbals look like.
And I don't know how you do that with a film though because there's a lot to a film with music with uh you know,
the visuals as well.
Um But I think what,
what he was trying to get at was that the story can be very evident whether the sounds on or not.
I think that's probably what Hitchcock was referring to was that whether the sounds on or not these stories should be very evident.
That's what my take away from that.
That's,
that's really good.
I've got mine,
I'll,
I'll sit on mine until I ask Steve.
So,
what,
what is your take on film is a storytelling medium like,
right?
Just your gut check or it's the closest thing to reality,
right.
Really?
Yeah.
Well,
maybe tell me maybe video gaming is,
um,
moves even closer towards that.
But obviously,
when I make a film,
you know,
you're relating to it because it's related to other stories that,
you know,
are,
obviously,
are fictional or stories that,
um,
you know,
uh,
that have,
uh been made up from the past.
So it's,
it's,
uh,
it's,
it's definitely reality.
I mean,
um,
that's definite.
The other thing is,
it's uh,
it's very communal in my,
in my opinion,
like,
you get to watch a movie collectively together.
That's why it makes a very good medium.
Right.
Yeah.
And it's typically like minded people that might like that genre.
Right.
In other words,
it's a certain genre or a certain story that people attract to,
like,
like,
you know,
different movies that are out right now.
There might be a certain genre that wants to watch a certain movie.
It's like when we talked about music,
it's very,
very similar to that,
you know,
you get people that,
you know,
get,
gather around to listen to a record,
you know.
Well,
people obviously gather around to,
to watch a movie collectively and,
and experience that.
So it makes a very good medium for storytelling because of that,
of that fact.
Right.
That,
that's really interesting.
So I just thought it's something funny.
So back in college,
a woman I worked with,
she said she goes,
I had a terrible,
terrible night last night.
I was like,
what happened?
She goes,
uh we went and this is when there's still Blockbuster video,
right?
So she,
she goes,
I went to rent National Velvet to watch with my mom and dad.
And uh I rented Blue Velvet instead.
Yeah,
about 20 minutes in after the severed ear in the field.
Uh The parents are like,
where's the horses?
It took 20 minutes to get to that part of the story.
Talk about the,
the communal experience.
But um so,
so here's my sort of my gut check on,
on film and storytelling.
I remember the first time.
So I'm as a writer.
Um you know,
I write um novels and fiction and whatever so that what you do long hand,
right?
You're writing.
So you're,
you are telling,
you are telling when you're writing.
So you're telling the story in film.
I,
I tried to write a script and uh the editor just right across the front just wrote in big letters.
Exposition.
I'm like,
what does that?
What does that mean?
Well,
exposition is when you're telling and in film and a script,
it's showing it's all direction.
So when you write a script,
you're not writing a narrative,
you're writing,
like here's the direction of how you want the scenes shot and yeah,
you have dialogue and things like that,
but it's,
it's seen and setting and things like that where they're standing,
this is what they're doing.
This is like there's characters involved.
It's like you're,
it's like you're building something.
It's really like the engineering of the,
of a story.
That's exactly it.
So,
so film as a visual medium,
you are mostly showing,
which is why like what Hitchcock said is you could turn the audio off so you could get rid of the dialogue and you should probably still be able to follow follow the story and this is why I'm not a screenwriter.
So that's not a natural thing for me.
So I have to ask you to right now.
What's your favorite movie?
What is your favorite film that you've seen?
I can't answer this for what reason.
Because if I answer it,
my wife listens to this podcast.
Just one.
Ok.
One of your favorite favorite?
Yeah,
we don't want a divorce court over this but one,
there's a funny story behind it.
Ok.
That's why total recall was one of my favorite movies.
And the reason being that it's,
you know,
that,
um,
it's a kind of a thorn in my side and her side is that,
uh on our wedding night apparently.
And I don't remember this.
She said she said I rented it,
you know,
on our wedding night,
I'm like,
I don't remember that.
She's like,
yes you did.
I,
I recall it clearly.
You rented this movie and apparently that's not what you do on your wedding night.
So,
anyhow,
what,
what do you do?
I don't know.
I'm not getting into that.
I don't watch movies to,
not to,
not to self.
Yeah.
So what was the,
what,
what about the story in Toto Rico that attracted you?
What is it you like?
I,
I love,
first of all,
I love science fiction.
Um,
and I like twisted plots where you don't know,
really know what's going on.
That,
that to me is good storytelling.
I love,
you know,
I love Hitchcock.
I mean,
love Twilight Zone I mean,
all of that,
that those old science,
science fiction and adventure stories.
I love those Indiana Jones.
I love,
I mean,
everyone does.
I mean,
really?
So,
and that's a Stephen King short story.
Total recall.
Hm.
Did you know that?
Now you,
do you ask me my,
my favorite film?
So now,
now this will be esoteric.
So it's actually a German film called uh Wings of Desire.
And I believe it was uh Americanized with Nick Nicholas Cage was like angels in L A.
They,
they butchered but it was,
it's,
it was more of an art film.
And basically the concept was,
it was shot in Berlin before the wall came down and it was the story of an angel that gave up its immortality to become human and the backdrop of the Cold War of,
of Berlin,
the both sides of Berlin.
It's just a beautifully shot movie.
But um thematically,
it's just what's it called?
It's called Wings of Desire and the director,
I think it won a bunch of awards again.
You know,
we're back into the eighties again.
But it,
it,
it affected me.
I was in college at the time and seeing that,
that film.
Um Yeah,
that story really,
it really affected me.
And again,
that's one of those things.
It's a German film with subtitles so you could watch it.
Uh without,
you know,
unless you,
yeah,
without the audio and you would,
it would be a beautiful it would still be a beautiful film.
Did you watch that on your wedding night?
No,
I didn't.
No,
no,
no,
because you guys would be sleeping.
Oh,
nice,
nice.
Well played.
All right.
So,
uh,
we,
we've got,
uh,
Bill is here with us and Bill has a wide and varied background as a Hollywood film director.
So definitely an expert in the field.
But,
um,
Steve,
you met Bill a long time ago.
Why don't you,
uh why don't you uh give Bill his big intro,
Bill.
Where did we meet?
I think it was in a,
a Met's office many,
many years ago,
probably.
Yeah,
probably.
Yeah.
Yeah,
I remember um there was always a community of filmmakers and,
and we're talking about our Met Zap here in uh in his office.
And I remember sitting around the uh used to have these picnic tables and,
you know,
you never knew who was gonna be sitting there and,
and one day,
Bill was sitting beside me,
we,
we became very good friends.
So,
um so it was really,
really good to hear your voice bud.
It's uh great to be here and I'm really excited to talk to you guys about storytelling and,
or whatever you'd like to ask me about.
Well,
I have a,
I have a question.
I know that you're a,
you're a midwest guy uh from Chicago.
And so I'd love to,
the listeners,
would love to know your story.
Like,
how did you get into Hollywood.
How did you get from Chicago and get to Hollywood?
Oh,
man.
Um I,
I often say that my life is a cautionary tale.
Um So it's uh I,
I've had kids on set,
you know,
say to me like,
oh,
I don't,
you know,
just tell me what to do.
And I said,
I'm,
I'm gonna tell you everything I've done and if you do the opposite,
you should be fine.
Um It's uh I literally,
I was a,
I was like an artist without a medium forever.
And so,
um you know,
growing up,
I just wanted to,
I,
I felt creative,
I thought I wanted to do art,
but I didn't really know,
understand what that meant.
So I tried everything.
Like I was into photography,
oil painting,
jewelry,
making,
flower design,
you name it.
Like there was a thing that was creative,
like I just want to try it.
Um Some of those were massive failures.
Um But uh you know,
it was,
it was just sort of like,
kind of figuring out my,
uh my,
my place in the art world.
And then at the same time,
like,
I just had a lot of business experience from a very young age.
Uh I was managing companies when I was 15,
16 years old.
And so I was sort of developing these two sides of it and managing a company in a way is a lot like directing because it's,
it's,
you it's leadership skills,
right?
You're really just learning how to communicate with people more effectively.
You're learning that being a boss doesn't really mean anything in terms of like telling people what to do.
It's really about inspiring people and,
and making people wanna work with you and,
and make,
and helping people understand that.
You've got a,
a vision for where things are going.
Hey,
Bill,
this is Kurt.
I'm sorry to stop your story.
But what,
what kind of company are you managing at 15 and 16 years old?
If you could elaborate on that before you go in?
Sure.
Sure.
Um,
you know,
I,
I worked for this,
uh,
family in Chicago and they owned a whole bunch of stuff.
So,
um,
we had,
we had some flower shops and um landscape supply companies and uh over the road trucking companies and like a strip mall and a tanning salon and like all kinds of stuff.
I thought you were gonna say Amway or something.
Yeah.
So I,
I kind of got involved at that level,
like,
like early on,
you know,
I,
I showed up one day like they need somebody to sweep the floor and I just kind of never left.
Um,
like they had me on salary by the time I was 16.
And,
um,
and it,
you know,
it was awkward too.
I had people working for me who were 60 70 years old and,
uh,
you know,
you,
it's weird,
you're,
you're like a 15,
16,
17 year old and,
and,
you know,
it's,
you're,
you're talking to somebody who's dramatically your senior.
Uh and where I come from,
that's a little bit awkward.
Um But you get over that all that really quick.
So,
um anyway,
so I had,
I had like a good business background and good managerial experience for a long time.
And,
you know,
I just kept pursuing this idea of what,
where's,
where's my artistic outlet.
And my brother is an actor and a writer and a musician and a dancer.
And like,
he's a,
whatever,
a quintuple threat and he's been doing that since he could walk.
And you guys,
you guys are partners now.
Yeah.
And we're business partners now.
Um But,
but I think that exposed me from an early age to kind of like a little bit of the idea of drama and acting and stage plays and all that kind of stuff,
but I still wasn't really involved in it.
And,
uh you know,
for a minute,
I thought I was going to be an actor and I quickly got rid of that idea.
Um because I just don't feel like that's my part of the process.
Um But I,
uh you know,
when I came,
I came to Los Angeles more for weather,
I think than anything else.
My brother had been here for about six months.
And so I said,
can I come sleep on your couch for a month?
And see if I like L A.
He was like,
yeah.
Sure.
Cool.
And I got here and I got a job with Disney but like,
not in the cool part.
So I was,
I was buried over,
I wasn't on the studio a lot.
I was over in consumer products doing like,
you know,
uh like business planning and operations and stuff like that over there.
It wasn't,
it wasn't even super cool.
I mean,
it was cool to me because I was like,
I'm in L A and I get to rollerblade at the beach every weekend.
Um Like that's as far as I thought it.
And like I said,
I,
I don't,
you still do that,
don't you?
Well,
I live at the beach.
I,
I don't roll it as much as I should.
Um I walk.
Um Yeah,
so,
so,
um you know,
just being here was terrific because of,
you know,
one I had a steady job.
That was great and I was kind of getting exposed to more and more things in the acting realm and,
you know,
eventually my brother and I,
with a group of friends just started kind of,
hey,
on the weekends,
let's shoot some short films and let's make some music videos and let's do stuff like that.
And,
you know,
he was in a band at the time and,
you know,
there's all that going on.
And so,
you know,
these little projects that were costing me way too much money,
um,
of my own dollars just,
you know,
plunking down and this is,
I don't even want to say how many years ago,
but,
you know,
I'm spending 789 $10,000 on a short show.
That's a,
no,
all the time,
you know,
you know,
Bill,
what that sounds like,
uh,
in Detroit terms is working for one of the auto companies while you're building your own car in your garage.
Exactly.
Exactly.
And I always tell people like,
they're like,
why do you make movies?
And I'm like,
I use Detroit as an example.
I always say,
you know,
if you're in Detroit,
you're probably gonna make cars.
If you're in L A,
you should make movies.
Like that's kind of what the town does.
It makes sense,
makes sense.
Yeah.
So,
so we,
we did that eventually I wound up getting a job over at the studio.
Um,
and that was,
that was amazing.
It was,
I was in production management over there,
like,
and it kind of started low and worked my way up and it was crazy because I,
you know,
during the week I'd be working on a $200 million movie and on the weekends I'm making like a $2 movie with my brother and,
you know,
you're kind of,
you're learning both sides of it.
Um,
like the first short that I was directing,
I,
I was,
I was so,
I was so terrible.
I can't even tell you,
I go back and I cringe at that now.
Um,
because I just did,
like,
I,
I thought I was Michael Bay or something,
you know,
like I was,
I'm working on,
I was working on Pearl Harbor and,
you know,
I'm,
I'm scouting a location with,
with my friends to go shoot this short as if I had a choice.
Like it's the location we were gonna use like that.
It was free.
That's why we're using it and,
and I'm like,
I think I can make this work,
you know,
we're gonna have to repaint this wall and we have to move this furniture or whatever and they're like,
yeah,
so grab the other side of the couch.
I mean,
like,
like I'm talking as if I'm,
I'm speaking like there's a set decorating department and they were like,
no,
no,
you're,
you're the department like you're all,
you're all the way to tomorrow.
Yeah,
like you doing the whole thing.
Um Yeah.
So,
I mean,
look,
it,
I had an incredibly uh fortunate experience at Disney.
Uh It was a really good run for me.
You know,
I worked maj the majority of the time in live action film and television production.
I moved over to development on the film side.
Um I had partial responsibility for running them up as franchise for a while.
Um You know,
I've worked on over 30 films,
six of them with budgets,
over $200 million.
I've worked on tons of network television shows.
Uh,
five of those went over 100 episodes.
Um,
Power Rangers,
Power Rangers,
right.
Uh,
no.
Well,
Power Rangers is post Disney actually.
Um,
and I actually,
uh Saban had still owned Power Rangers at the time and,
um,
after I left Disney,
I,
I had done some stuff with the Muppets to kind of revitalize that franchise.
And I got a call from Saban saying,
hey,
we know what you do with Muppets.
Can you help us with Power Rangers?
So I went over there and shot some Power Ranger stuff.
That's,
that's awesome.
So,
Bill,
um,
you've kind of run the gamut like you,
it's like starting uh starting at the pizza shop,
making the pizza and then owning a franchise really?
I mean,
the way way you've done that.
And so what we were talking about today and you being the,
our resident subject matter expert now in,
in film and as a director,
we're talking about film as a storytelling medium and clearly,
like you said,
you know,
you started out,
you had,
you had the creative drivers and you tried a lot of different things uh to as,
as a creative outlet uh to,
to tell stories.
So how do you think you fell into film?
Like what resonated about telling stories through film,
what resonated with you that,
that was gonna be your medium,
I think,
um,
of it,
it's three things for me really,
uh,
3d space and color have always made a lot of sense to me.
Like,
and I know it sounds kind of broad and weird.
But,
um,
we like weird broads,
by the way.
Yeah,
exactly.
And,
and I like a lot of,
I tell a lot of you,
like,
I'm the,
I'm like the gayest straight guy you're ever gonna meet.
Like,
I,
I like,
I like that's why you give good hugs.
Oh,
I'm glad you said hugs.
I said hug ug um No,
no judgment.
Um No,
I,
I like,
I,
I love set design.
I love production design.
You know,
my mom asked me to decorate her house.
Like that's,
that's,
you know,
that's just who I am from,
from the get go.
Um I'm actually a certified master floral designer.
Um like I went through all the classes for that.
Um I've done weddings and funerals and all that kind of stuff.
Um So I just like color is really easy for me.
Like I don't easy.
Just meaning it all makes sense to me and 3d space does.
So,
so,
you know,
I walk into a blank room or a blank stage or whatever and I can tell you exactly what it's going to look like.
Like it's all just lays out for me and I think those two things buttered up against.
Uh and again,
I wanna say it's like this managerial skill set that I have where again,
it's that idea of like,
you have to provide vision,
you have to provide inspiration for people.
But the way you do that is by connecting with them very one on one and very directly.
And to do that,
you really need to be like almost like a psychologist,
right?
You need to,
you need to really instantly be able to get into a person's head and find out what makes them tick and how to move this forward.
And it's the same with like directing actors in a part in that you really need to help them break down a character and understand this character.
And you're gonna have these great discussions about motivation and,
and what's going on in the scene and how is the scene affected by the story and,
and all those things together.
But you combine,
you know,
sort of like that understanding of the human psyche with a love of color in 3d space and all of a sudden it was like,
oh,
and I know how to manage people.
So I was like,
maybe,
yeah,
I was just like,
I'll give this a try.
And once I tried directing,
I was like,
yeah,
this is,
this is definitely something I enjoy.
But if you don't thoroughly love it,
you,
we should do it because it's a lot of work.
Like it's crazy.
It's combination of people of,
of the presentation of the film and the story,
right?
It's a combination you're not just creating and,
and showing a film with color,
with,
with audio.
It's,
it's the people you have to manage as well to do that.
Correct.
I mean,
that's where the difference.
Yeah,
I mean,
you need,
you need credibility and respect from,
you know,
from the crew,
from all the crew members.
But by the way,
it's just imagine any other job you go into where every single person in the building and I'm talking from the craft service person to the producer,
to the hair,
makeup person.
They all feel like they can do the job better than you,
every one of them.
Um And you've got,
you know,
sometimes two and sometimes 20 people looking over your shoulder like watching every single movie make like and oh,
and here's the most famous person on the planet standing in front of you.
Yeah.
And so,
so how do you balance that?
So OK,
so there's the creative aspect as a director where you're like,
OK,
we've taken this script and I have a,
a vision of how I want this film to,
to look and,
and feel and then you've got the financial pressures of the studio saying,
hey,
this thing better make money and then you've got uh the whole production staff and everyone thinking that yeah,
they know better,
they can do it better than you.
How do you um keep all those balls in the air without taking Xanax?
Yeah,
I'm not saying I don't take Xanax,
you know,
it's a,
it's um the first and foremost I'd say is,
you know,
you gotta have an awesome team around you of folks that you communicate well with and probably have worked with in the past and everybody kind of,
you know,
that's why,
like I've worked with my brother so many times.
Like I don't,
when I'm working with him,
I don't have to wonder is this covered as that covered kind of thing?
Like,
yeah,
you trust,
you build that team of trust.
So back to,
back to your story really quick.
When,
when was your,
uh,
moment of,
when you knew you made it,
in your opinion?
Oh,
I don't think I've made it now really?
I mean,
yeah,
I,
I look,
it's very,
I'm,
I'm not a braggadocious person by nature.
So it's,
I mean,
I've done some really cool stuff but I,
I really don't look back,
I only look forward.
So I just kind of look at what I haven't done and like,
I don't think I'm a great director.
I think I'm a better director every single time I direct,
you know,
and like I want to die on set.
Like that's,
that's how much I like.
You're a practitioner.
You're definitely a humble human being,
that's for sure.
Yeah,
I just,
I mean,
I love,
I love,
I think it's a privilege and an honor to get to do the job,
whether you're doing it for,
you know,
a million dollars or $1.
I think it's the idea that you get to wake up and do something you enjoy that much,
um for a living and get to work with so much,
so many talented people.
It's just like,
how lucky are we that success all,
all within?
And that's a great,
that's a great attitude to have.
Um So Bill,
one of our,
uh our last questions is,
what kind of stories are you attracted to?
So,
as a,
as a director and as a filmmaker,
um you know,
I'm sure sometimes you've,
uh you've had to take scripts that you didn't want to take.
But like,
if you had your druthers,
what kind of stories,
um do you like to tell through film?
Well,
hang on,
I don't know what his favorite movie is.
What's your favorite movie?
Uh I,
I don't know if I can say a favorite movie,
I'm gonna tell you a couple of favorite movies.
Um But,
but,
uh you know,
I think if like go back in time and make any movie,
my movie,
I think,
you know,
Raiders Of The Lost Ark is,
is way out there for me.
Um It's,
it's,
you know,
it's,
I don't know,
we as a kid,
you know,
I saw it in the theater and,
you know,
we,
we would go back and re enact those scenes in the yard and stuff,
you know,
like swinging from a rope and all that stuff off a tree.
Um it's,
yeah,
there's just,
there's comedy and there's action and there's,
you know,
adventure and it's just,
there's so many great things wrapped up in that.
Um There's,
I'd like some classics too.
I mean,
I think,
you know,
um as corny as it is like Casablanca to me is,
is so incredibly well written and I don't think anybody could pull some of those lines off except for Bogie.
Um just,
just super fun.
Um But I also have a lot of love for a lot of new films,
you know.
Uh So yeah,
that goes into so what,
what type of films,
what type of stories do you like to tell?
Like if you had your pick?
So it,
it's funny,
like from a genre standpoint,
I think I'd love to do more action drama than I have in the past.
But that's just because I haven't done as much of that.
Um And,
and I think just like an actor,
like if you said,
like,
what kind of parts do you want?
They'd be like good ones,
you know,
like they don't care whether it's a horror or comedy or drama or what it is.
They want to flex it out like they wanna go do all of them.
Yeah.
Yeah,
I wanna do all of those for me though.
What really,
what the,
the Met thing for me and,
and I think a lot of folks forget about this on the writing process is it's all character,
you know,
um people sometimes think stakes are high because,
you know,
you're battling for the soul of all humanity and that really doesn't matter if,
but if you're battling for the life of one person that matters,
you know,
like whose eyes am I seeing this through?
And as long as you have a great character that you can really sink your teeth into that,
um you know,
is,
is creatively well drawn and has depth to it.
I mean,
when I write scripts,
you know,
I don't,
I write pages of bio about a character knowing that none of that's ever going to use that.
You know,
just everything.
Tell me their favorite food.
Why is it their favorite food?
When did it become their favorite food?
You know,
like,
what are they allergic to?
What's their least favorite color?
It gives you the foundation for that character,
right?
I mean,
it just builds out the character to give the,
the core of that back story.
So,
choices and the,
the worst stories are stories that don't have good character development in my opinion.
Yeah.
So as long as you've got like a really well drawn character,
that's got a lot of depth to it.
That's,
that,
you know,
has some,
I mean,
I have a lot of fun with actor friends of mine when they're doing auditions and,
and they'll call me,
like to come direct them on a,
just a home tape thing.
Uh,
but one of the fun parts about that is,
you know,
they just get sides which are like three pages of script or two pages of script or something and maybe like a one or two sentence character description.
So you have to make all these choices.
Like you gotta hyper analyze every word on the page.
You really gotta dig in and make all these choices and you know,
we'll sit down for a couple of hours and just break down a character just who is this and what's going on here?
And why did they say this then?
Why did they say that there,
you know,
like,
just kind of breaking down this thing,
but that's so much fun,
you know.
So,
so Bill,
I got,
you know,
we're talking about stories,
we're talking about movie making.
I'm,
I'm in a TV world,
but as far as movie making has changed throughout the years,
what,
what's changed and where do you see this going as far as that type of storytelling?
Uh I think the biggest thing that changed for me was,
you know,
there used to be like good cameras and bad cameras and there used to be like,
uh we can't do some of that because it's out of budget,
right?
Uh I wish I had this or I wish I had that now.
The wonderful thing is like,
everything's possible,
right?
Like you,
whatever you really want to be in this thing can 100% be in there,
there's different ways it can be.
What do you mean?
Um You know,
whether it's visual effects or,
you know,
like a,
a helicopter shot,
a helicopter shot was you had to get a helicopter,
you know,
now you can have a drone,
you know,
um,
you know,
if,
if I wanted a,
a motion move,
you know,
with that,
that looks like a jib crane flying,
you gotta go get yourself a crane.
Now,
you know,
I could just position a couple of cameras and we,
we can make the move and post.
And I'm not saying that's easy.
That takes really time for folks as well.
But the idea that all this is possible.
And so what I've,
what I've moved to is because I used to try and figure it out,
you know,
and now I stopped figuring it out because I'm like,
I'm probably gonna get it wrong.
So,
uh you know,
I get my VP and my editor and post supervisor and V FX person and we all meet together and I say this is what I want this to look like.
At the end of the day,
you folks tell me the,
the smartest way to shoot this,
you know,
because again,
if I'm gonna guess I might guess wrong and I might guess expensive.
So just let's work it out.
But I,
but you're still providing that vision,
you're still providing that context and,
and I'll bring photo references or samples or whatever.
And they're like,
I want it to look exactly like this.
I want to look as close to that as possible or whatever.
And I'm,
I'm blown away sometimes by what they come up with,
you know,
because it's like,
oh,
that,
that is definitely not what I would expect.
So,
to me,
like,
that's so awesome that,
that we have this toolbox of ridiculous,
ridiculously awesome tools,
you know,
to,
to create stories with.
Well,
this has been great Bill.
I mean,
you literally are,
are a wealth of knowledge.
I mean,
you know,
so much about filmmaking,
probably more than anyone that I've,
I've met in,
in Hollywood in the many years that I've worked there.
And um and I'm very honored to be able to be working with you with and Joseph on a,
on an upcoming project that we're doing collectively together.
So that,
that's,
that's an amazing thing to me.
No.
Thank you guys so much.
I'm,
I'm a big fan.
Uh I think is a really fun series and uh I think there's a lot of uh deep storytelling to be done with that as well.
So let's go conquer the world with it.
All right,
we'll talk to you soon.
All right.
Peace and love,
gentlemen.
Thank you.
Thank you.
You know how much wealth of knowledge there was and what he was saying,
oh,
my goodness.
There's for a young filmmaker just to sit and listen to that.
I mean,
but just the fact of the volume,
like when you're working on a 202 $100 million movie as a director or in any capacity.
Right.
That's a big deal.
No,
definitely,
definitely build huge,
huge wealth of knowledge.
Uh,
not only,
not only in,
uh,
you know what,
it's like being a director in Hollywood but kind of how you get there and it's kind of a hodgepodge how you can get,
you know,
when I asked him the question,
what was his aha moment of when he made it and his answer to that?
Right.
It's like,
well,
I still haven't made it yet.
He just felt that way despite the projects he's been involved with,
despite the,
the amount of time he's spent doing this,
I mean,
that's a midwestern value perhaps that he still feels that way.
But it's funny you say that because like when,
when we're out there,
we hear that from people who work in Hollywood,
they say we love people from the midwest because they get shit done.
Like there's,
it's like not,
it's a lot of,
a lot of it's that work ethic,
right?
They're fairly humble about it,
right?
It's all about me.
Yeah.
No,
it's blocking in and like we need to get so we've gotta get this done today.
So let's break it down and let's let's execute when you start working at 14,
15 years of age.
You know,
I know you guys,
I mean,
I worked in the corn fields,
you know,
dessel corn,
those were,
those were hard,
hard jobs.
People,
I mean,
people,
people that you said they were 70 years old,
they had people that were working for him.
That's incredible.
I mean,
but when you come from that working class and then you go out there,
it is definitely different.
I mean,
those are the people that I see running a lot of the,
uh these corporations.
So because it is a business,
here's,
well,
here's what struck me,
here's what struck me about what Bill said it,
it um echoes what you said earlier about filmmaking.
It's they call it a production because you are building,
you're assembling.
And like from what I heard,
what he was saying is the process of filmmaking.
It is,
it is a process,
there is a way you do it,
it is a building an assembly and a design and all those,
you know,
all those things uh which I find,
which I find fascinating what I find really respectful of,
of somebody like this is as I mentioned,
the,
the managing of people,
right?
You have the managing of people of all different types,
you have your actors,
you have your grips,
you have everybody in between,
but also you're managing the actual visual,
audio,
technical aspect of that production as well.
So it's people and technology,
it's,
it's all this put together and pulling that together.
That that's why you see a lot of names,
you know,
in the credits,
uh,
for different people,
like,
you know,
they've worked together many,
many times over and over again,
like Jon Favreau for,
for example,
and the Mandalorian and he,
um,
a lot of the people,
you know,
you actually worked on Iron Man and that as well so that you see that commonality and why,
because they want to work with the people that they can trust.
They'll said it clearly.
Um,
and if you're doing anything,
it doesn't really matter whether you're starting a small business,
a pizza shop or whatever,
you have to surround yourself with people that you can trust and that can do the work and get things done.
And if they can't,
that's the,
those are the wrong people to hang out with,
you know,
and leadership.
He,
he also hit on this too.
Leadership.
It's not about bossing people around leadership is about service.
It's where you actually are helping the people around.
You rise up.
It's the best they can be.
We didn't ask this.
I'm sorry,
we didn't ask this when we had him on.
But what's the best way to,
to look up Bill and find out what he's doing and projects and everything?
Yeah.
Um,
well,
I know his uh,
beach glass films dot com.
That's Bill's his production company,
his brother.
Yeah,
him and his brother,
him and his brother.
Yeah.
So you guys got kind of sparked an idea in my head that I,
I gotta get out.
Um uh oh no,
this,
this whole,
this whole idea like you said about trust,
right?
To me,
I always think I'm thinking in terms of story.
So the story craft,
the story craft of what it takes to make a film,
which means you have to put a team together and there's a process and it's a,
it's truly is a,
a production.
And Steve,
you said the propensity for people to work with people that they trust.
Um part of it,
part of that trust,
I,
I believe in the story craft is now the creative part.
It's like you need to understand that person's creativity and what their,
you know what their end game is,
right?
Like,
and you wouldn't know that right out of the gate.
But Bill said he likes working with his brother because his brother knows what he's looking for.
So he could probably,
they could probably finish each other's sentences and like in the,
in the storytelling,
in the story craft and the story making that is such an advantage on so many fronts,
not only on the business side,
being able to produce that film or produce that book or show or whatever,
but also the creativity to find someone that their creativity resonates with your creativity.
How do you,
how do you guys do that with your own stories when you're writing stories?
When you're creating stories?
How,
how do you do that.
I was gonna say,
I mean,
literally you use a sports analogy.
Uh It's like a relay,
you know,
like I,
I do a lot of stuff,
you know,
and a lot of writing with Joseph and it's effortless.
I'll write apart.
He'll write a part and then somehow I don't know how it happens.
It's just,
they sink together and,
and,
and then when I go back and read a lot of the stuff,
it's like they were written by one person.
That's when you truly know that you've put together a team of individuals that you know,
that are,
are connected on that level.
And that's not easy to do.
You have to,
to,
to do that.
You have to,
I spend a lot of time with Joseph.
According to Laurie,
I was gonna ask,
you know,
we are dating now as Bill said,
OK,
so the uh the gay straight guys that I know my wife,
Julia says she's like,
uh,
oh your girlfriends on the phone really?
Stop it.
Anyhoo,
curse my girlfriend abominable.
No,
wait,
no,
no,
no,
no,
no.
This is really,
this is really important because it's,
it's finding people that you have an affinity for a deep level of trust and understanding that you find a way to work with uh both personally and professionally.
And so Steve said he doesn't know how it comes together.
I this is how I know it comes together because someone again at the end of the day,
someone has to own the story,
right?
So,
um you know,
we worked on uh Jack's Medal.
So this was Steve's story about his great uncle and I know he's,
he's talked about it before.
But um it was really his personal story along with the story of his great uncle coming over from England and winning the fa cup.
And you know,
all these,
all these great things,
but it was a deeply personal story.
So you,
you know,
I had to give Steve the room,
it was his story.
But he was,
you know,
I finally said,
like he said,
I got to get this story out,
but he was so close to it.
I said,
listen,
just get something out and I'll,
I'll provide the framework and the stuff,
objective lens that you could,
yeah,
I,
I'll,
I'll like help in the,
in the crafting of it.
But the,
the,
the heart of it,
the,
the spirit of the story,
he had to take ownership and he did take ownership of it and that's the way we're able to work together because,
you know,
I,
I stepped back and allowed him like that,
that creative space and that personal space.
Um and,
and took the role of like,
I'm gonna be more like the sort of the,
yeah,
the former and the shaper,
right?
And,
and conversely like,
you know,
you know,
we've done that,
you know,
we've done that with,
with other things.
Yeah.
So,
but at the end of the day,
like,
you know,
Bill is a director.
Someone's got to own it,
like,
own it.
Well,
what's interesting about Jack's Medal?
And I,
I think I,
I'd love to close with this part of it.
Is that,
that forward that you wrote,
that was from the perception of Jack even though he wasn't alive anymore.
Right.
Right.
So,
so I would remember I asked you to,
to write,
I do.
In fact,
I wrote it,
I did.
But this turned out even better in my opinion because,
well,
it was just a thought that I had him and like the only person that can write the forward to this book is Jack.
But then I thought,
well,
but he's dead.
It's a problem.
How can that happen?
So I wrote just a,
I jotted down a bunch of notes and I called Joseph and I said,
Joseph,
somehow through the Ether,
Jack has to write this.
And so he took the notes that I had and he wrote it back and I made a few modifications to it after that.
And it's,
it literally was written through the ether.
I mean,
it was that,
that's one of the most amazing things that I've ever worked with him on is just that forward,
you know,
forget the rest of the book.
But the rest of the book is I like,
it's a good book.
I think it's a great story.
But but the,
but that,
that forward is so unique because I don't know,
a lot of books that have the forward written by someone that's dead and the way it was done,
it was phenomenal,
in my opinion,
right?
It was much better than what I could have wrote.
But that said,
imagine the filmmaking side of that,
right?
If you were to take that book and that story and make that film and make that forward that part of that film,
you have to be able to that.
Here's the omniscient narrator,
right?
Like the unseen one,
when you,
you can see the visual of,
you know,
a desk with someone with a,
an old ink pen and,
you know,
writing out in cursive,
you know,
this,
the thoughts of like I'm dead now or whatever.
I,
you know,
they did that uh series of unfortunate events.
Um that whole series was like that where you had the the narrator was this sort of mysterious person that was guiding you through the story,
through the story.
And,
and you and Jack was that was that character?
I mean,
because when I,
when Steve gave me the notes and I wrote that um that intro uh that forward,
I wrote it like,
like a character,
like this is a character,
this is the character,
like there has to be some sort of mystery and humor and it had to be representative of,
of what Jack's personality was probably like.
And Steve and I had multiple discussions about that and then,
yeah,
um,
it came out,
it came out great.
So,
before we wrap up,
we've got to circle back about Kurt.
Your favorite movie?
My favorite movie.
So,
we've heard yours,
right?
We've heard both of yours.
Um,
this is uncharacteristic for somebody like me who has a strong sports background.
You know,
I'm,
I'm big and burly.
I'm,
I'm abominable,
I believe is what you addressed me as earlier.
Uh my favorite movie of all time Bar and,
and sometimes my kids laugh at me because we'll play it in the house.
Is the sound of music.
And here's why I,
I've been to where they tape it at in Austria.
I love that area.
I love music.
I love the story.
It's got the drama,
it's got the love line,
it's got the war,
right?
It's got all this going on and somehow they put it all together with beautiful music,
with beautiful scenery,
beautiful vis,
you know,
visionary.
Um That's why it's one of my favorite movies.
I have a theory that,
that our favorite movies are usually tied to some seminal uh moment of where we were in our,
in our lives.
Like that's the,
that's the emotional.
So,
let's see.
In 1965.
Yeah,
I don't think I would have been thinking a whole lot about it,
but no,
honestly,
I just love the,
the creativity.
I love the uh the music,
the music is a big part of it,
obviously.
And so and great acting.
Yeah.
Great acting.
Absolutely.
All right guys,
uh film,
television and storytelling,
we could go on forever.
But,
uh I think this is a good one.
Bill was awesome.
Great.
And on that note,
uh thanks everyone and,
uh,
we'll see you on the flip side.

 

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