Saturday dawned to dire warnings of wind, rain and the river rising. And us, shooting outdoors all day, mostly down by the river, with all sorts of grand plans involving boats and people in the water and Lauren running around barefoot. As we rolled camera in front of a mossy fishpond, the weather started in full force and we knew we were in for a day of it. But in the fashion that has become the hallmark of this unbendable crew and cast, everybody just got on with it, and said “It’ll be miserable to work in, but it’ll look great for the film.”
Everyone rose to the challenges the rain brought. The cast jumped in and out of their coats without complaint, Lauren schlepped through muck in her bare feet, dipping them in a bucket of warm water between takes, and never whined about it, and Gray O’Brien did his tumble to one knee into goopy shloop mud repeatedly like the pro he is. Our makeup artist Sian was undaunted by the enormous challenge of keeping everybody’s face from dripping away forever, and Lauren looked absolutely outstanding in her final scene. Our 2nd AC, Jack, found a way to write on the slate when the downpour threatened to wash away his ink. As director, I knew I had to lead by example and ignore my increasingly frizzy fright-wig of hair to focus on shooting the scene. And when we all scurried inside for a dry lunch, gaffer Bryan and DOP Michal went back out into that miserable cuss of a day to get the boat in place that we were going to put the camera on after lunch.
When I saw that boat, I didn’t care how wet I was. Sitting in a red rescue boat (thanks to Mercia Inshore Rescue) in the middle of the river in a big yellow rain coat and wellies, shooting a scene on the riverbank, rocking on the choppy water, is so cool and so much fun that you forget all about your drippy nose and soaked jeans. By the end of the day we were wet to the bone, muddy and we had made our day, getting every single shot in a glorious, atmospheric, Wasting way. And the footage looks incredible. We were right – the rain really was worth it.
I'm the writer-director and more or less the mother of this film.