Finally, after a very stressful year where life got complicated, Sky Edge is now complete.
A deadline helped drastically with letting go of the script, as, if left to my own devices, I might have redrafted the script for an infinite amount of time* (*removing all factors that prohibit my infinite existence or ability to write perpetually). I am sure lots of writers struggle with letting go of their script, I have been known to never let go, ever, of some scripts. Deadlines are good for me.
On the whole, the actual experience of writing this film has been enjoyable. Hopefully it is a more visual piece than my previous scripts as this was one of my main aims. When I started the script I had a sense of the pace and flow of the film that I wanted to write, the feelings that I wanted the audience to get from it. I had these things, and some plot. But there were parts of the plot that were far less concrete than the wibbly-wobbly concepts that I had a strong sense of.
Some scenes came fully formed in my head, I saw how they fitted into the rest of the film. What they revealed of the characters and how they drove the plot. I just wish my imagination had a 100 minute attention span so I could imagine the entire film fully formed in my head, but alas some scenes I struggled with.
The first draft, in my mind was flawed because I initially wanted to leave Thomas’ character a mystery- leave a bit of ambiguity in the back story to let the audience decide. Were his actions in leading George into the murky and dangerous world of illegal gambling pure, did he just want to help his cousin? Or, was he using him? And Thomas’ relationship with Mary, I didn’t want to spell out if he was using her either, or, if she had a positive influence on him.
Whatever the audience was to decide, I knew the real story behind the character. But I think the lack of solid answers is probably overall no pay off for the audiences commitment in watching the film. I have just finished re-watching the entire six seasons of TV’s ‘LOST’. I saw it as it was aired originally, and always admired the massive complex interweaving plot lines, the way in which a paradigm was established (flashbacks) and then played with to deliver a new way of story telling (*spoiler alert- they become flash-forwards) and then again (*spoiler alert* ‘flash-sideways’). I loved how the series set up lots of questions. I loved the cliffhangers, the jaw dropping revelations and the way that my brain would truly become addled watching it. Sadly though, the series left lots unanswered, it ended on a damp meaningless squib of an episode where the whole concept behind the entire 100+ hour entity hangs teetering on a toilets edge. Re-watching the entire thing back to back, I had hoped that it would all make more sense. But alas, no. Seems I need hard facts about what’s going on and what’s gone on and everyone’s intentions too!
The second draft sees the past slowly seeping out throughout the film, which hopefully makes for a more meaningful end.
The next thing to get my head around was the dialect. Having lived in Sheffield in the past, the dialect was always something quite difficult to get my head around at first. I was weary of writing too heavy a dialect that it makes no sense to someone without experience of Sheffield/ South Yorkshire dialect. But without it, it seemed unauthentic. . I started thinking in a yorkshire accent after a while, and in conversations almost slipped into talking that way. The next script I write will be in a Welsh accent/dialect (I can hope!).