“The best and safest thing is to keep a balance in your life, acknowledge the great powers around us and in us. If you can do that, and live that way, you are really a wise man.” - Euripides
September always seems like a time for new beginnings – a time to take stock and plan for the following twelve months – a leftover from schooldays I guess.
Sometimes as a casting director I find it difficult to find the right balance. 2015 has been especially difficult in this respect. Somehow at the beginning of the year I got involved with a couple of projects (a feature film and a series) that were basically a waste of time as their producers were either incompetent or out and out fraudsters. Neither project got made but they did involve a lot of time, expense and stress, which left me feeling jaundiced to say the least. However to balance this I was truly delighted by the success of two very low budget films I was involved with “Victoria” and “Tercer Grado” which are both fully exceeding both mine and the filmmakers’ expectations.
So as I plan the following year my resolution is to follow my heart and my head and to only get involved with projects that are truly viable and that I genuinely believe in. If I have any nagging sense of doubt, then I will trust that and just say “no”.
I am deeply grateful to the continued buoyancy of the commercial industry in Barcelona and salute all the professionals involved; producers, art designers, directors of photography, technicians, caterers, stuntsmen, actors, models, etc etc who continue to attract world-class clients to work here. The fact that I have cast over 50 international commercials so far this year is a testament to this professionalism - long may it last! I am also in debt to Messi and Shakira - great that they are based in Barcelona.
On the other hand, I am frustrated by many things about the current system especially how freelancers “autonomos” are treated. The lack of security or social benefits provided is frankly unacceptable and it really pisses me off when I hear of colleagues who have had work-related accidents or are simply sick and there is no provision to help or support them. I am convinced that change needs to happen but am not sure how this can be brought about. All ideas welcome.
And to end my stock-taking I have to say that I am so delighted by the response to my appeal to help Tamara look after her orphaned brother and sister. It really makes me optimistic about the future when I see people rallying around to help and support one of their community.
Thank you to each and every one who has contributed to my very personal cause.