BY CYNDI GREENING, PHOENIX, USA — We spent last week working on the trailer for the documentary and three guesses as to what we’re working on this week. Yep, the trailer for the feature. We passed the initial cut to Keith Heffner, the Sound Editor and Music Director. He layered sound, effects and vocals into an appealing and effective mix. It was exciting and inspiring to see everything coming into shape.
Ultimately, we had 88 hours of footage that were shaped into the approximately 90-minute documentary. We had another 34 hours of footage that were crafted into the 90-minute feature. When you’re shooting a feature, there is a primary story line that is being followed and there just isn’t much other footage to spare. The documentary is a whole different story. With 88 hours of footage, you can imagine there were many, many stories that could be found in that mass of material. The students were required to make demo reels after they returned from Zambia so some of the footage was used there. But much of it will remain unseen, many of the more subtle stories will remain untold, parts of what we discovered will remain unknown. We got to talking about it and decided that some of the stories might be suitable in a short format.
Producer Pamela Bowman has created a short based on the poem she wrote while we were traveling to Victoria Falls in southern Zambia. (The original blog entry of the poem can be found on the FilmZambia site.) In addition to working on the documentary trailer, she’s been working this short. I think this piece captures the gentle soul of the people of Zambia. We met so many kind and wonderful Zambians. Check it out.