Saturday, July 14, 2012

Collaborating in Film: A Love/Hate Relationship

I love collaborating. Usually two heads are better than one. But even the best collaborations can suffer. And when that happens, it's a sad day but it's not the end of the world.

I often compare a producer's partnership with another producer, director or writer as a marriage. You interact on a daily basis and may even see that partner more than you do your significant other. These relationships are intense. You're working on raising your baby aka your film together.

Lots of decisions need to be made both creatively and financially. And there will be times that you don't see eye to eye. You may do your best to keep things calm in the moment, but over time, the disagreements may add up and overtake your relationship.

When this happens, you may come to a point when you are asking yourself if the partnership is worth saving. This is usually accompanied by feelings of sadness and perhaps even betrayal or resentment. You look back at all the good times you once had and it stings even harder.

But, it happens to the best of us and in relationships where everyone has the best intentions. You may even be great friends personally, which makes it even harder, as you juggle your personal v. business relationship. In the end, no matter how badly you want a collaboration to work, you can't force it.

There can be many reasons why a partnership isn't working. It may simply be that you and your partner have grown apart. You may not have the same goals anymore. And that's okay. It's no one's fault and even if you feel someone can be blamed, the reality is that the partnership is not working and you need to accept that and work to redefine your relationship. You may decide to solely focus on the one project, remain as friends only, or sadly, part ways.

Whatever you decide, give the project aka your baby your priority. Because no matter how mom and dad are feeling, the baby still needs your attention, love and care.


Mike Hedge said...

perfectly said.

tough times are tough.

as producers we are the magicians. some times the magic conflicts with the magic of another person on the project.

I love it the best when everyone on the project is making magic that all work together.


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