How it all began...
Thomas, a close friend who lives in Thailand, lost his family in the 2005 Christmas tsunami. Searching for good amidst the tragedy, he discovered Biorock, the reef restoration process championed by Dr. Thomas Goreau. After some convincing on his part, I grabbed my camera and journeyed to Indonesia to learn about saving our coral reefs. But the story didn't end there. My education about the perilous state of hard corals brought me back to Florida, where I followed another restoration process developed by Ken Nedimyer in Key Largo. Trips to Kosrae and Australia followed, as I sought out healthy corals in an effort to explain what is going on with our coral reefs.
Sunday, May 30, 2010
Florida Post-Mortem, Part I
Its been a while since I updated the blog. And for a good reason: it was a case of wait then hurry up.
I had not moved forward on the documentary in a few months. A review of the material I had from my December visit left me scheming for a third stab at the elusive interviews. So there was little to report as I waited and prepared.
When I decided the time was right, I took two weeks from my job, shipped my new housing to Key Largo, and hailed a cab to the airport.
Before all else, I want to thank Dave Hartman for his continued support of this project. Without his generosity and willingness to let me use his house as a base of operations for each trip I have taken, I would have given up on Florida after the first shoot. Not only has he been there as a friend, but is also an excellent resource when it comes to local knowledge, locations, and contacts. It’s a shame there isn’t more production work in the Keys – he would make an excellent location coordinator (and I’ve told him this many times).
On my last visit, when Billy Causey learned of the difficulty I was having in gathering candid stories around Key Largo, he provided me with a list of vocal advocates who were willing to go on camera without fear of retribution or scorn from their peers. Three that I contacted were more than willing to speak out on camera, and I could sense from our phone conversations that these were not people who would back out like previous candidates. So as I packed, I felt more prepared than on either of the last two visits.
I also planned for a longer stay to give me the flexibility in getting diving footage and the interviews. I had three confirmed interviews going in and a fourth in progress, a good deal on diving, and a new housing for my camera. My biggest mistake the last two trips was thinking I could manage the shoot as if I was a legitimate show. After all, if 60 minutes is in town for a day and wants to interview you, chances are you would make it a priority and accommodate it in your schedule. Obviously, I’m no Mike Wallace, but it took me two visits to realize I was the one who had to be flexible.
In this case, flexible means two weeks in the Florida Keys to get what I still needed. If I were Mike Wallace, it would be four days.
Since there are quite a few stories I would like to relate in this forum, and I have this terrible habit of penning long-winded tomes, I will spare my readers (all 6 of you) and use an innovation I recently discovered: chapters.
I. The interviews
II. The Diving
III. The Production Assistant
IV. The People
V. The Side Project
VI. The End?
VII. Wrap Up and random stories