By Melia Sigmon, Photographer
Assistant professor of media production James Goodman concluded the shooting of his film “The Ghosts We Know,” just a few weeks ago. Most of the crew was student-based, which gave 19 students the opportunity of gaining valuable experience in the filmmaking industry while adding to their resumes.
“Working on ‘The Ghosts We Know’ really helped me to develop as an assistant film maker, as well as leader of a film crew,” says senior, Greg Berzinski. “It was a lot of work, and it consumed a great deal of time, but I really feel like I learned a lot from the producers of the film, Mr. Goodman included.”
The film opens with a single mother in her late 30’s who is experiencing turmoil in her life after having a relationship fall apart. Despite her attempts, she can’t get over the fall-out, and in order to cope with her pain, she visits the “lady of the snakes” who makes a deal to take her pain away. From there, she goes on to live a very successful life, but she has to pay a price.
This film attempts to explain why relationships don’t work out, but in a metaphorical way. Goodman’s favorite aspect of the plot is the way it twists and turns.
Inspiration for the film comes from many different places. Goodman’s main inspiration is filmmaker Wong Kar-Wai. Goodman believes he relates to the themes Kar-Wai expresses. Inspiration also comes from smaller places like history, experience, ideas, or an image.
Most initial planning came from little ideas as they struck him. Eventually, they built up to a plot that needed to be written down. Goodman says, “When I think about film, it’s about the need to do the story instead of the need to have someone see it.”
A project like this takes both time and planning. Goodman’s greatest challenge was planning and shooting this project around a full load of classes. Originally, the film was supposed to be shot before school, but the screenplay wasn’t quite fully developed. The filming took place on weekends around the Triad area.
Lilly Chalfant, a student that assisted on set, said, “Being on set was really eye opening. There was a lot of hurry up and wait. The changing of the scenes was pretty hectic, but it was amazing how quiet the set could get.”
Once editing is complete, Dr. Nathan Daughtrey, instructor of composition at High Point University, will review the film and compose an original score to accompany the visual aspect. The film is expected to be around 20 minutes long. The target completion date is sometime in December.
The next step will be showcasing. Aside from just making this film for practice and experience, Goodman plans on entering it into several film festivals to showcase the efforts and hard work that was put into this product.
At the end of the long 10-12 hour days, Goodman says the entire experience is really about getting to know the people you work with.
“It’s an opportunity for people to really come together and get to know each other really well in a short amount of time. Not just people you already know either. The actors have come from all around N.C. for this film. It’s an opportunity to meet and experience new people in a way you might not have otherwise,” he says.