On Saturday, production wrapped on A Cautionary Tale after three days of shooting at Newstead Abbey Historic House and Park in Nottinghamshire. I had vaguely hoped to make a video diary of the whole thing, but in practice I only managed to grab a few bits on the first day:
The second day saw us filming in the bone-chilling wind blowing over the lake all morning, while 1939 was re-dressed to 1969 inside the cottage. After filming 1969 through the afternoon, we wrapped when the light fell, postponing a few cottage exterior shots until the next day.
After picking up those shots on Saturday, we moved inside for the present day interiors and the meatiest scenes in the film. As anticipated, we found ourselves faking daylight through the windows as shooting continued after dark, though we wrapped only half an hour later than planned.
I’d like to thank all of the cast and crew once again for their hard work, plus everyone who supplied equipment and props, and the lovely staff at Newstead Abbey.
A project like this leaves me with very mixed feelings about unpaid filmmaking. On the one hand I hate the stress of trying to find last-minute replacements for drop-outs, I hate how much I have to ask of people, and I hate that I cannot acknowledge people’s hard work with the renumeration it richly deserves. But I also come away with a strong feeling that this is it, this is what matters, this is all that matters – making truly creative work and having fun doing it – and despite fifteen of years of plugging away, I still have no idea how to do that while paying people. Should I therefore stop? I really don’t know.