Dear Film Fans,
As promised, here is a detailed update on production weekend. We apologize for the delay of this post, but we wanted to make sure we got you as many juicy details as we possibly could!
It was a whirlwind of a marathon week of filming from August 21 through 24. First there were three hours worth of B-roll footage to shoot on Thursday, followed by three consecutive days with a full cast and crew. Friday and Saturday each began at 8 AM and ended at 8 PM, in Rochester and an hour away at our location in Medina, respectively. On our final day of filming on Sunday, we began at 9 AM in Medina with our core group of about 15 people, later expanding to twice that size for our final scenes shot back in Rochester, which were completed at 1 AM. Phew! :)
We are really pleased with the production results. We have captured some great high quality footage, the actors’ performances were as envisioned, and our original goal of telling a fun, quirky story to the utmost of our creative and professional abilities has been realized.
As is always the case in any film or other artistic project, there were certainly some hiccups along the way, but no obstacle was too insurmountable: when some of our camera equipment was not sent to us in its entirety, Neeti used her quick thinking to secure the necessary tech materials; when certain key props were unattainable at the thirteenth hour, Neeti realized clever and ingenious solutions that kept the integrity of the film intact; when scheduling called crew members away temporarily or at the last minute, other members of our team stepped up in a big way to fill the void. We are more confident than ever in the film festival-caliber of the work!
Who Would Jesus Date? also represents many exciting individual firsts. Here are just a few: For our producer and director Neeti Fidurko of the award-winning motion graphics studio Tree in the Sky, this 15 minute short film is her largest (length-wise and crew-wise) project to-date. The satire was screenwriter Daniel J. Kushner’s first foray into comedy, having previously focused solely on journalistic projects and tragic music dramas for the operatic stage. Several of our principal actors, including Brian Barrett as our Jesus, are making their cinematic debuts.
Every single member of the 25+ production team donated their time, energy, talents, and passion with such overwhelming love, generosity, patience, and good will. Without this key component, the film simply could not have happened. Our unending thanks goes out to everyone who played a part–and that includes you, our dear friends and Kickstarter supporters, whose faith in us and passion for the project was fuel to our fire.
In the early stages of post-production, Neeti has already completed a rough cut of about 17 minutes, and it’s already looking great! What happens after editing? There’s a lot to do still: due to some audio issues, some of the dialogue has to be overdubbed, some narration has to be re-recorded, and video footage has to be re-shot for a select few key scenes. We are currently in talks with several talented composers about scoring the film. After these tasks are complete, our sound engineer, colorist, and special-effects teams will get to work, followed by the final edits and title sequence design.
Though we initially had a self-imposed deadline of November 1st for the completion of the film, we don’t want to rush the process, thereby compromising the quality of a film on which we’ve worked so hard. With this in mind, we are now working toward a deadline of December 1.
Similarly, our original intention was to deliver Kickstarter rewards this month. Unfortunately, unforeseen circumstances resulted in production delays. And because many of our rewards (DVDs, tickets to the screening party, etc.) are dependent on the completion of the film, we’ve had to push back reward distribution. We would like to estimate a new reward delivery date, but that would really depend on the completion of post-production; and we do not want to make another promise we may not be able to keep. We deeply apologize for the hold-up, and we can’t thank you for your continued patience and understanding. As always, we are committed to making the best film possible and providing you with a “thank-you” that accurately reflects the love, care, and hard work with which the film was made.
We are committed to providing you step-by-step updates all along the way, from now through the film’s initial screening and beyond. These updates will include pictures, video outtakes from production week, and more. We’ll also be revealing more of our amazing crew to you–you know our actors, but what about our cameraman, sound crew, production assistants, and makeup artists (just to mention a few)?
We can’t thank you enough for all your support from the Kickstarter campaign, which gave us our initial budget of approximately $2,800 (after Kickstarter fees were taken out). In the process of making Who Would Jesus Date? we have had to go way over budget and invest several thousand dollars out-of-pocket. In order to help defray these costs, additional options for fundraiser/Paypal donation will soon be implemented, complete with new rewards–such as authentic props from set, direct from the actors’ hands to yours!
Above all, we cannot wait to share this film with you, and we know you’ll be thrilled with the results. Once again, thank you for your continued support!
Neeti & Dan
The idea behind making the film Who Would Jesus Date? is simple: create a light-hearted fictional story that shows an iconic and hallowed figure in human history dealing with meeting a significant other’s parents. What if they don’t approve of Jesus, of all people?!
This satirical short film is first and foremost an artistic project and is not meant to be a theologically rigorous examination or an opinionated commentary on various religious passages or beliefs. That being said, Who Would Jesus Date? is meant to point us toward what really matters in our own belief systems and spiritual walks -- the core message of love, peace, and acceptance.
Members from the creative team, cast, and crew of Who Would Jesus Date? come from varying faith backgrounds and experiences, including but not limited to Christianity, Judaism, Hinduism, agnosticism and atheism. The film’s script reflects that with humorous takes and innocent jokes about various religions.
We respect religious devotion and expression, and as a result are not seeking to offend, approve, or disapprove of anyone’s beliefs or any messages in any religious text. We are, however, seeking to challenge ourselves and all those might see the film to take stock of what’s really pertinent to our spiritual walks and what is not. After all, isn’t this what Jesus’s ministry was all about?
Thanks for your continued support, and we look forward to sharing this film with you!