Our group “Requiem for a Team” won the Huntington Cinema Arts Centre 48-Hour Film Festival late this Summer. We had to write, film and edit a movie (under 5 mins) with a set guideline of elements. It showed before every film at the theater for a week!
The required elements were —
Genre (each group had a different one): End of the World
Line of dialogue: “You fool, those were my mother’s feathers!”
Action: A doll has to fall to the ground.
Character Name: Prudence Barebones
I led the writing team. Right off the bat, we decided that comedy was the way to go, since 1) It might be more family friendly and 2) There are SO MANY drab, grey-looking apocalypse films with dirty people walking through woods with guns and gas masks. The first idea was “what if Annie Hall and Alvie Singer met in the apocalypse?”
We wrote a script, up until 3 AM, but it wasn’t satisfactory. After getting a couple hours of sleep, I woke up early and decided to write something new based on some ideas we’d been workshopping. The whole idea of dating tips was the best way to go, since it is free for on-set interpretation and improvisation. I wrote the new script, in a weird, delirious state for 45 minutes, handed it to the crew, and then passed out for most of the day.
The actors, interestingly, got hints of the initial Woody Allen influence, and decided to dress up accordingly. Nowhere in the script did it mention Alvie Singer or what the characters were really wearing. I was happy and found it odd that the writing itself strongly hinted at at those influences without outright saying it.
Thankfully, everything worked out, and we made something that we are proud of.