One of my first meetings about Passing Harold Blumenthal was with someone I had previously collaborated with on another film. It was a terrific meeting and I was met with great enthusiasm on the other end. In fact, they volunteered to donate an entire camera package for the duration of the shoot! Amazing. This was a huge win. This particular camera package was a terrific state-of-the-art machine and was being served with full support (lenses, filters, matte-box, follow-focus, tripod, etc.) I would estimate the value of the entire rig at well over $50,000. For a filmmaker on a budget, this is a dream come true.
Recently, I was awakened from that dream with an email informing me that they had just SOLD THE CAMERA. What??? Yup. Sold. Apparently, they received an offer they couldn't refuse...and they didn't refuse. There wasn't much more of an explanation than that, and I didn't really press the issue. Moving on.
I refuse to see this as a major catastrophe. If they had sold the camera while I was shooting with it, that would be a different story. In this case, I still have some time. Instead of bemoaning the loss of this critical element (which still baffles me), I decided to get a little philosophical. Most filmmakers would agree that making a movie is often a series of miracles and catastrophes, one after the other. This free camera thing was kind of both. I'm choosing to focus on how quickly things changed in both instances (both getting the camera and losing the camera).
Things can change at a moment's notice. That's just the nature of such a massive undertaking. One email or phone call can make you or break you, but you have to stay flexible and open-spirited enough to roll with it. The show must go on.
The way I see it, I'm due for a miracle.