So we left the Unlimited Festival at the Southbank with over 24 hours of footage shot, totalling one terrabyte of media – that’s the equivilient of all the X-ray films in a large technological hospital or 50,000 trees made into paper and printed! (Thanks James Huggins, for the comparisons).
How does all that – plus all the footage shot on 24 individual shoots for the PUSH ME short films – get edited into a 30 minute documentary? The answer is – not easily!
It’s a real skill to work out what to include and what to leave out, to work out what helps the viewer with their journey and what distracts them, jars or takes them away from the piece. We were lucky enough to go down to Bristol last week to meet the team at BDH who are working on this at the moment, including Glenn Rainton who is doing the work at the coalface stitching elements together.
We were able to see some sequences which have been created – some based on new interviews from Southbank, others taking elements from the 90 second films – and see how they have been extended using additional footage and perspectives. The main thrust of the visit was to talk about the ‘arc’ of the documentary – what was the tale we were telling? How could we engage people with that tale?
I’m not going to release any spoilers here – but I can say the whole thing is looking right on track. Showcasing the work of the artists, opening up the depth of the debate around the work, focusing on the art not the disability, whilst not hiding disability as a creative impulse… all the strands are there. The dark art of the edit is weaving them all together into a seamless whole.