Just Say No, Already!

This is me about now.

This is me about now.

So I’m in the middle of working on a film project and I’ve been searching for locations where we can shoot the final scene.

Now, location scouting is probably one of my least favorite parts of filmmaking: it’s the ultimate, cold, sales pitch: “Hi, can I use your property to shoot a movie and can you let me use it for free?” This is the kind of question that has a certain amount of rejection built into it from the get-go and I hate going into a task knowing that I’m going to be rejected. I’m pretty sure that this is human nature, not just me being a coward, although I sometimes feel like a huge wimp for not just getting over it.

At any rate, I’ve been waiting to hear back from one of these locations for two weeks now. The woman that I spoke to originally sounded perfectly nice when I spoke to her on the phone: she told me that she needed to ask her supervisor about whether they would allow filming and that she would get back to me later that afternoon. I took her at her word, and when I didn’t hear back I figured that she must have forgotten.

I followed up the next day with an email to ask if there had been any word about the location. No response.

I followed up the next day with a phone call but she was out of the office. I asked when I could expect that she would be in the office and learned, to my disappointment, that she would only be around on days when I had classes. No matter, I decided I would just call again to follow up.

I called. She wasn’t available. I left my name and my number and a message asking about using the space for filming. No response.

On the weekend I went to the space in person. My contact person wasn’t there and the receptionists recommended that I continue to go through her rather than speaking with someone else. So I took them at their word.

During the week I called again. Out of the office.

A few days later I called again. Not available.

By this time I was pretty sure that the answer was “no”, and that she was just hoping that I would go away and stop bothering her. And this bothered me because I couldn’t just go away and stop bothering her: I still needed an answer to give to my teammates. I couldn’t just ignore their phone calls when they wanted to know if they could use the location.

So today I called in the morning. I was told she was in a meeting.

I called back at lunch hour and the receptionist had me on hold for several minutes before coming back to tell me “she is busy with… something. Can she get back to you?”

“Sure,” I said. “How late is she in today? Until 3?” (her normal time).

“No, I think she came in early today so she’ll be leaving at 1.”

“OK, so if I haven’t heard anything close to 1 I’ll give a call back.” I told him.

12:50 rolls around and I still haven’t heard anything so I call again.

“Oh, she’s left for the day.”

So now I’m 99% certain that the answer is “no” but now it’s personal. Now, goddammit, I want her to leather up and just say no, already. I’m the first to admit that I hate rejection, but I hate being jerked around by passive-aggressive Mickey Mouse bullshit even more. An email would do: “Sorry, we’re not allowed to have film crews use our space” or something to that effect. Ignoring me is insulting.

Wouldn’t it be great if this post had an ending? I’ll get back to you with one when I get out of my meeting.

~ by Gwydhar Gebien on January 28, 2014.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: