The Dream is Alive in San Francisco!
by Annalise Velazquez
As a student film maker, I often find myself wondering “What do I want to do as a career?” Whenever I tell someone what I am studying their immediate response is either “when are you moving to Los Angeles?” or “ What do you see yourself doing in Hollywood?” I don’t have a freakin’ clue! If I wanted to make the big bucks, it’s no doubt Southern California is where the jobs are but I find myself asking: do I really want to become a seed in The Biz?
Its no secret that mainstream media is owned by a few major corporations; in which their various subdivisions make nearly everything we see on television and at the box office. As a San Francisco native who was raised to be an activist, I’ll be honest when I say I don’t want to be a part of that. Perhaps I’m being naïve, but I fear if I did go to Hollywood- it would suck out everything I love about film. I would dread the stress and bitterness due to those large Hollywood egos I’ve heard so much about. That is not the life I’ want.
Now, I’m not saying San Francisco film makers do not have large egos, or that film making in the Bay Area is not stressful. I honestly think I’ve been lucky, or perhaps I’ve just met the right people but every single production I’ve worked on has been a BLAST.
Saltwater is definitely one of those productions that carry the essence of making a film with your friends. I can say, without hesitation, that the people I’ve met on this project have become really good friends as well as professional contacts for future projects. I love how whenever I have a production meeting with Lise Swenson, we giggle and gossip like best friends, but we can still be professional to get our tasks done. I’m also thankful to have made friends with a few of the interns, some who have really helped me when the times got rough. Taking the time to appreciate individuals for their particular talents, you open the doors to forming personal bonds that make the process of making a feature film really fun.
There is nothing finer than making films with your friends and I’m truly thankful to have met such humble and talented people who have been nothing but friendly. So when I think about what I want out of my film career, it’s that I just want to make movies with the talented people I trust and make enough money to live comfortably. There is nothing written in stone that if I want to make films, I must go to Hollywood. I don’t feel the need to become the next Micheal Bay and own prime real estate all over the world. I’d be perfectly content with a day job; perhaps shooting for public access, or editing for commercials, even teaching at a community college- utilizing my talents and still being able to tell my stories on the side. This dream is alive and well in San Francisco and I’m happy to be a part of it as it continues to bloom.