There it is. The title of my new film.
In 2016, I made my first documentary entitled “The Making Of A Dream”. I followed a theatre group that’s near and dear to my heart (I Can Dream Theatre) for over a year and documented what it takes to make a production of theirs come to life.
The experience of
finally making a film after years of thinking that it would never happen was a huge accomplishment for me. It’s something I carry with me every day. Bucket list item checked off.
That being said, I was wiped by the end. I was happy to regain my sanity and recharge. I never like to repeat myself, so I had mentally said to myself that if I were to do another film around the subject of individuals with special needs, it would have to be different.
In late July of 2018, my good friend Sam and I were having drinks and talking about all kinds of things as we normally do. In the midst of a conversation, he jokingly said that I should make some sort of video about his physiotherapy clinic.
By this point, I had been itching to make another film. But, I know the method to my madness in that having an itch to create again was one thing – but actual inspiration towards an idea had to feel right and organic. So, I was stalled to say the least.
So, when Sam asked me about that “some sort of video” about his clinic, a light bulb went off in my head. I immediately responded and (as I told him) took this offer very seriously. I didn’t feel like it was going to be a video though. I felt like it was a bigger story to be told.
So, what’s so special about my friend Sam’s clinic? Well, he’s single-handedly changed the lives of three adults with special needs by giving them employment. And it just so happens that these great people (Paul, Lindsay and Ainslie) are all cast members of (you guessed it) I Can Dream Theatre. I knew their comfort level with me would be fine, as we all knew each other and are friends.
With constant conversations with Sam, the story we both wanted to tell became more and more apparent: how his clinic is a shining example of an organization making strides to be more inclusive in their working practices. And by doing this, everyone wins at the end of the day.
Diversity and especially inclusion is something that I feel and think about on a daily basis. So, making a film about that very notion got my mojo running.
I also didn’t want to make another long form film. I’m more interested in short films these days, so I knew that going in, I had to tell this story in a short stretch of time.
And both Sam and I wanted to open up the conversation, so we talked to colleagues, to parents and to the trio themselves. The conversations we had were funny and moving and surprising.
In my last film, I felt like “my voice” as a director was apparent so much in every frame that it made me a bit annoyed. The conversational moments this time around were so organic that I became “a fly on the wall” just taking in what was happening which was amazing. Being ignored was the most wonderful thing! 🙂
A week from today, Included will be shown for an audience made up of the subjects in the film, their families and their colleagues. By the end of this weekend, the film will be done which is super exciting and terrifying at the same time.
It’s great to know how this film will be shared with people in an immediate fashion, as it will be available via YouTube.
Putting this film together was a collaboration from the beginning to end. From the very beginning with Sam, to conversations with staff at the clinic, to the music that was composed and performed by my friend Steven Atme, to test viewings, to late night editing sessions…the list goes on. I couldn’t have done any of it without this army of warriors.
I’m really psyched about this one. And I hope you will be too.
Coming in about a week to a mobile device near you. 🙂