IFP’s EMERGING VISION’S PROGRAM — THE DAY BEFORE
I have never blogged before, and my initial thoughts on the whole web blog phenomena was that “in my day, diaries and journals were private. We hid them and secured them with locks.” Then I realized I actually used the words “in my day,” and frantically searched for a way to undo it since I am clearly too young for such a phrase. When the opportunity to do this blog came about, I welcomed it gladly.
Besides, my mother and sister kindly prepared me to share my deepest darkest secrets when at ten years of age they read my journal cover to cover. Thanks guys, I still owe you.
If you want to know my deepest darkest secrets, at least those before the age of 11, ask them. This blog is about my experiences before, during and after the IFP and the Film Society of Lincoln Center’s inaugural Emerging Visions program. I would say that I’m excited about going to the program tomorrow, but since that calls forth imagery of a 12 year-old girl headed to summer camp, I’ll just say the manly version of that. Whatever that is.
My name is Lanre Olabisi, and if you’re wondering I’m male and the name is Nigerian by way of my father. The names mean “happiness is increasing” and “joy is multiplying.” Sounds like a lot of pressure on a kid to be happy, right? Since I generally am a fairly happy guy, my only way to rebel has been making movies that my family describes as being decidedly “un-happy.” I call them “un-sentimental.”
My first feature August the First was a glimpse of an unraveling family and how they each cope with the return of an estranged father. The film premiered at South by Southwest in 2007 and was well traveled on the festival circuit. It ending up getting picked up by The Film Movement and has had a pretty nice DVD life. You should probably watch it on Netflix. Right now. Seriously. Stop reading and watch it. Do it.
My next project – the one that I will be discussing this Monday – is entitled Highway to Nowhere. It is another ensemble dramatic thriller. This time the backdrop is the Arizona/Mexico border, but at the heart, it is a film about identity and the struggle between a father and daughter to finally understand one another. After my first film, my sister refused to read any further screenplays, claiming that I only like “sad” movies. Considering that she considers Dumbo one of the saddest movies ever made, her estimation of serious dramas is, well, suspect.
I have an idea of what to expect at the Emerging Visions program. There will 24 awesome peers who I look forward to meeting, in addition to huge names there that can do immeasurable things for my career. I have a great screenplay already, now I’m just working on my Jedi mind trick: “You WILL do everything in your power to help me make my film.”
I’ll let you know how it goes.