SHORTS...AND TO THE POINT !
lance larson (BLOOM)
By JOHN WILDMAN, Contributing Writer
What was the inspiration for the story?
I have a few dramatic features in development
and was told that I needed something dramatic
on my reel to be legitimately considered to
direct the films. So I called David Norman
(writer) and told him I wanted to direct a dramatic
short film. He bit the bullet (split costs)
with me and we made it. Looking forward to
see what comes of it. Hopefully something!
Shakespeare plays a couple different roles in
the course of the film. Why was that appropriate
and possibly even essential?
I wanted to do something dramatic and what
better way than a good old fashioned tragedy.
Originally Shakespeare wasn’t part of the equation,
but the more David (the writer) and I
discussed the project, the more evident that his
presence be felt. So it was definitely appropriate,
but essential… not really. Borrowing a
quote or two and using the book to aid Rosa’s
character ark is fun for literature geeks, but in
the end it was just a tool. I believe the story
is just as tragic and carries the same weight
without referencing Shakespeare.
You were once expelled from U.T. Austin
(and later reinstated) for “unauthorized” use
of the editing facilities. Did you have to do
anything similar to get BLOOM made?
I’ve grown a lot since college. That doesn’t
mean I don’t bend the rules or twist the law to
get films made. Then only difference between
now and my days on the 40 acres is that I’ve
learned how NOT to get caught. I’ve become
a professional begger, borrower and an occasional
thief. My motto in regards to filmmaking
is that the only real crime is making a bad
film. No BS, if the film Jim (DP of Bloom)
and I made (Beyond Babylon our Senior thesis
project) didn’t get nominated for a Student
Academy Award that year, I truly believe we
would have been expelled from the University
of Texas film track.
Was the film absolutely mapped out from
beginning to end or were you faced with
some unexpected choices in the shading or
emphasis of the story in the editing room?
I never shoot a film that hasn’t already been
methodically cut in my head. This goes for
shot list, storyboards, music tracks, walkthroughs
with the keys a week before shooting…
basic pre-production. I never shoot a
shot that doesn’t make the cut. I’m not a director
that shoots the world. I have that advantage
because aside from being a commercial
director (and aspiring feature film director),
I also cut feature film trailers for Universal
Studios (close to 300 trailers to date). For me
the route to directing started with becoming
an editor first. It taught me how to effectively
tell a story in pictures. Editing helped me
learn to narrow my vision of a story. I’ve come
to know what shots are necessary. All in all
I’m not shooting the world and that saves a lot
of time and money. The best part is I get mad
respect from my crews and that is everything
on set. You’re only as strong as your weakest
link. Efficiency is key to getting everything
you need for the editing room.
Without revealing the ending, can you give
us a clue as to what will happen in the feature-
length sequel to BLOOM?
No feature version for Bloom, but lots more
tragedies to come.