The Director’s Cut: Don’t wait for others – make it happen!

I’ve just wrapped up the shoot of my new film.

Bake-off with Iron Man
So it’s now time to bring it into post-production, moving from the hectic phase of gun and run to the relaxing but equally daunting phase of editing. My editing room is my leaky basement – the exclusive Venice suite, as I like to call it.

We are focusing on editing a teaser, for starters, to set the mood and get the film out there, even amongst the Hollywood giants. They have ‘Iron Man 3’ and we have our ‘Bakerman’.

Three Nejs a maybe 
Many folk ask why don’t you ask for help from DFI – Det Danske Filminstitut? With this question, my smile drops to a bitter frown. I have tried that for four years.

When my previous film ‘No Right Turn’ had its premiere at CPH:PIX and landed a DVD deal, a consultant from DFI told me: “We will help you next time.” Cool! I teamed up with a talented producer and made an application that included mood boards, casting, locations and budget for a new film. Exciting! Sent it off. A year of prep. We waited three months, and the short reply was: “Nej!”

Curious, I set up a meeting with them and was told I was approaching them the wrong way, and they will only support first-time applicants with short projects. I strolled back to my producer.

I hammered out a script, mood boards, casting, locations and sent it off – it was a year’s work, but it felt good. We waited the requisite three months and it was: “Nej!”

Disappointed, I set up a meeting, but the consultant dealing with ‘our case’ left – he wanted to make his own films. They advised me to try to apply for development support.

They wanted to work with a general ‘idea’ with me instead. I marched back to my producer. Okay, let’s try this as that’s what they really want – and I had an idea for a documentary. We made the application and shot a few scenes – one year later I sent it off. We waited. There was a DFI management change, then after five months: “Nej!”

Call me Makerman!
This time it boiled my blood. The tone of the letter was negative and mean-spirited. I simply didn’t understand. I chatted to other filmmakers and they said the same: it’s a throw of the dice.

I wrote to the head of DFI to inform him of my experience. He wrote back, saying: “There is a 20-foot wall around DFI and they are content with their process and we should resist shooting until we are funded.” What?

This fuelled my ambition to use what I can get hold of to make movies and not rely on any organisation. Why won’t I ask for help from the DFI? I want to spend my time making films, not filling out forms and waiting. I have seen too many filmmakers waiting forever. The time is now …

Do you want to be the first to see our new teaser trailer, yes!? Look up ‘Baker-man-film’ on Facebook.