So having switched my reel to one with examples from drama productions, I gave a copy to my mother. When I next talked to my father, he mentioned my new reel. He was a little unsure about how his opinion would be received. “I’m not sure what this is. It’s some scenes from films. What did you do?”
A real compliment! All my parents saw was a scene from a mainstream comedy, a couple of indie movies and a documentary short. They couldn’t tell what I’d done. From their point of view, the reel scenes look ‘real.’ That’s what I was hoping for – that they were smoothly-edited enough that they didn’t notice an edit that was out of place.
For someone who isn’t in the business of hiring an editor, my demo reel is a little boring. I’ve shown it to a few people already. Once they finish watching, I like to explain a little about what I added to the process: “The first scene was originally six minutes long – made up of takes selected from eight different setups. I cut out the jokes that didn’t work. I added one… The third scene was made up of a single ten minute improvised shot of three people around a table – I cut the shot up to make it seem as if there were multiple takes of more than one setup… etc.”
My friend Donna suggested adding a short doc featuring me saying this accompanied by footage explaining my points. Even if people don’t need to know the background behind the work, they would be introduced to me as a person. My voice (and possibly my picture) might give people an idea of what it might be like to work with me – an important element of choosing who to work with. I haven’t decided yet whether this is a good idea yet.
Another idea would be to make a short montage that combines a much larger range of my work into a minute – accompanied to a piece of jaunty music…
…for now, I’m proud of my boring reel.