The last few weeks have been a bit of a whirlwind, but luckily it has finally died down a bit so I can get down to doing some actual ‘real’ work. Not that going to film festivals and winning awards isn’t fun, and could even be considered work by some (I think). It mostly seems like fun and games, but it can sure wear you out.
In case you haven’t heard, “Dreams Awake” has won five awards in four film festivals in the last few weeks. I’ll briefly recap. In late April we won two awards at WorldFest in Houston, TX. Then a couple weeks later (over the same weekend) we won two more awards at two different festivals. The first was at the Honolulu Film Awards. Then my wife and I took a red-eye flight to get back to L.A. to receive a second award at the Awareness Festival, the Grand Jury Award for Narrative Feature, no less. That was unexpected, but very well appreciated. We also screened at another festival during this period, but I hesitate to mention it because it was not a positive experience for all concerned (maybe I will eventually write about that). But then two weeks later we won another award, at The Indie Fest. Pretty exciting stuff.
But, is this why we do this? I know, I know, we should appreciate this while we can. And I do, very much, but I can’t help feeling a little bit odd about it. Maybe it’s just me, and my odd idea of what feels real and what doesn’t. Doing the work and working the craft is what feels real to me. I am glad that someone out there puts some value and merit to the work we do, and I do appreciate that these festivals go out of their way to recognize us, but what is this odd uneasy feeling in me about all this? It just doesn’t feel real, as if it’s all just an illusion. Maybe that in itself is a statement about the work we do. I mean, after all, the films we create are illusion. Right? And now I’m being weird because the awards and recognition we get from doing that seems like an illusion?
Ok, I’m trying to figure this out. Maybe, I would like to think we are trying to create some type of truth or reality out of the illusion of our films. To give it some real relevance in our lives, or the world? Right? But just maybe, when we get some recognition that our films are just films, and only illusion, does that slap us back in the face to that reality. And that we are just projecting our own ego-illusion of a pseudo-reality, making us truth-sayers only in our own minds? Or maybe I’m over-thinking it, and a film is just a film, whether it be for entertainment (probably for most of us), education (for a few of us?) or enlightenment (maybe just for the filmmaker?). Anyway, just points to ponder, I guess.
And finally, I want to leave you with this one new observation I have about “Dreams Awake.” When we were at WorldFest in Houston, we got to see our film screened on one of the largest screens I have ever seen. Now, I have seen our film on a large screen, but one of the smaller theater screens. But seeing it on this screen was another experience! Needless to say I have seen our film so many times, but never like this. I was totally into it, and totally engrossed. This is the way to see “Dreams Awake.” On a screen like this. I know every filmmaker probably wants to see their film on a big screen, but I have to tell you that our little film was meant to be seen and experienced on a big screen. It really makes me want to do a theatrical run now more than ever. So, one way or another we’re going to see if we can make that happen. Okay?! (Well, we do have some more film festivals on the horizon, so maybe we will see some on you at more of those big screens.)