“When someone walks into my trailer and asks what documentary I’m shooting, I can’t respond,” he says. “You can’t tell someone who’s in the film world to tell a filmmaker.”
It doesn’t work like that with the media. As you probably know if you’ve watched our videos, the media doesn’t really exist for documentary filmmakers, at least not the way many filmmakers imagine it.
If you watch a ton of content online, chances are, you’ve seen dozens of different documentaries. Most are basically about the same movie. No matter how hard you try to stand apart from the crowd, you’re going to attract most, if not all, of the viewers from the crowd.
“You want to show some authenticity to the audience,” says Schuur. “You want their opinion to be clear and informed. And then, what you can’t do is just create a one-person
Schuur decided to approach film from this new perspective, focusing more on the filmmaking process and putting more emphasis on storytelling. So he started working with his crew – some of whom had previously worked in films – on a new project.
One of the films he made in this way was a 15-minute film about some high school students in Philadelphia. It tells the story of a teenage girl and her friendship with a boy who lives in the same building. The film is about exploring the differences between men and women and how these differences are shaped by our culture.
“A lot of film schools are thinking that kids shouldn’t make films,” Schuur says. “And I want them to realize that they’re not doing anyone any favors by sitting on the couch.”
While his initial approach to documentary filmmaking took some getting used to, the next six weeks have been really exciting, he says. With so much focus on storytelling and authenticity being emphasized in the process, he’s now seeing some of his favorites coming back to him.
I am so lucky. I have incredible mentors and a studio.
“My first big project was really a little bit like that, the same thing,” he says. “A lot of people are not taking a class. They’re taking a movie. But film is not made with five students trying to make one film. My second project will be the first that goes a little bit into the process.”
This new project is based around a guy who plays the same character and gets more and more close to the girl.
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