The ABC Coronation and Dance
We went over to the Philippines to tell the story of political violence through the lens of one man, a friend of ours’ father-in-law, who is a barangay captain who has seen it at its worst first hand. We soon realized that to do that was well outside of our resources and reach and that that story has been told literally over and over for a century now. In fact it is one of two stories that virtually choke out the rest of the narrative of daily life, creative life, academic life, the life of the laborer and the cleric; the lives of normal people living in the global south. Typically those lives are couch in a spectrum that swings from poverty to violence, hence those become the only terms we in the global north build our framework of knowledge about global southern cultures around.
Film is at once a critical object and a critical action. Vision, collaboration,and the nature of creative partnerships in narrative construction are all critical points in the action of making a film, fiction or non-fiction. The filmmaker is at once delivering the word and presenting him or her self as a critical body in the process, a space for critique. The nature of the performance of the filmmaker is just as critical to the success of the mission of the film as the performance of the people in front of the camera. I always am worried that I am going to break the energy of whatever I’m shooting. It is often inevitable that I will.
With We Are The Storm People we are producing a film that fully sets itself up that way. This film is the beginning of a larger project in the Philippines. We look at Linklater’s patience with the process and wonder why that can’t be introduced into filmmaking in a way compatible with non fiction storytelling.
What we begin with, what we cut away and how we frame the construction of narrative will determine much about us as filmmakers in relation to what and who we are capturing on film. I have to say I am quite excited to present this work and have it roundly critiqued in a public forum.
In order for that to happen it must be funded properly.
My partner and I are artists in our 30s who are fully freelance creatives living in NYC. This means we are either working or looking for work 20 hours a day 7 days a week. With that schedule films like this become a side project that end up looking like a really well done family vacay video for the producer to remember how much he shelled for two filmmakers to accompany him on his family-in-law visit. We need to take the time off to edit it and we need to feed ourselves while we do that.
We want to pay the creatives that work with us their normal rate.
We are starting to work with some really amazing Filipino artists and musicians like the Office of Culture and Design and Gel Jamlang. We are trying to track down Igo, a farmer and folk singer that we heard of from our friend Clara and we are engaging other Filipino artists and creatives to work with us on this project. We need to pay them for their work. We cannot stand to see people working for someone else’s dream and not get compensated. We have been there plenty ourselves and it is a rotten feeling, so we want to be responsible to the folks that work with us and help them continue working.
Please consider a small gift to this production. All gifts are tax deductible.