Today, I finally returned to tasks relating to Inside-Out, Outside-In after focusing most of my energy on the release of a web series Dumbass Filmmakers!  The two main tasks were to write down a timeline for the project and begin writing a list of potential talent for a key character.

The timeline existed before – just in my head.  But it did help to write down all the target dates as I go into high gear finding investors and collaborators.  People need to know how much of their time the project is likely to require and when milestones should occur.  I found too that whatever knowledge of film festivals that I retain is giving me a hint of how the film’s schedule might affect its initial release and which festivals may be appropriate to target.

Then, I started a list of actresses to consider for the role of Rose Meresh, a key supporting role in the film.  Making lists of actors – especially at this stage – is a whole lot of fun.  I don’t limit myself based on the actor’s status or how likely they are to do the project.  I just think in terms of the archetypal energy of the character and who might be right for it.  It also helps to crystallize the character in my mind because such a list inevitably brings up one of several ways to go with the character.  By the end of a brainstorming session, I had six or seven names on the list. One is a major movie star household name.  Another is a friend I worked with in a play a few years back. And of course, even this list can barely qualify as rough draft territory.  The casting of other roles could really impact who’s right for the role of Rose.  But she’s one of my favorites in the script, so it’s crucial I know who to approach.  Because I believe that it’s approaching the right people that matters most. If you confidently approach the right actress, you don’t just know who the character is in your GUT, you know how to articulate the essence of the character to other human beings.  And you better! Because you’ll be approaching agents, managers and actors and communicating with them about the character.  Once you’ve approached the right actor, it’s up to the “Casting Gods” whether or not your first choice comes through.  But the process teaches you so much about the character that you’ll be able to make maximum use of the actor who eventually plays the role.

Hunter Lee Hughes is a filmmaker living and working in Los Angeles and the founder of Fatelink, an open source production company. Our filmmaking blog charts the progress of each of our projects. If you enjoy the blog, please support our team by following us on Facebook, Twitter (@Fatelink) or Instagram (@Fatelink).

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