There you have it. I don't t think I am psychopathic. I have way to much anxieties for that. But I am definitely more at home in system 1 than system 2. This is why I perform good shooting at a racetrack. Tons of stuff is going on and I can keep an overview on everything all the time. I can get concepts intuitively but not grasp their more abstract complexity.
Can you describe exactly what you do on a "racetrack shoot"? Do you handle the camera? Do you give direction to anyone? Do you then edit the film? I have the feeling that even this is an illusion.
You mean after I researched the subject (no I don't have an assistant who does the research form me) I have written a concept, made a budget and excited my agent about it (who works on commission - that is how the industry works. And as a filmmaker you cannot have a meeting with a TV exec without an agent or set up through an agent), after we had meetings with TV executives where I did a presentation to convince them that we can do a successful shoot of a program that people will enjoy? After we went over contracts deciding on rights and as to how exploit the product according to geographical regions, time frames and fees. After weeks of pre-production where I secure the crew, figure out with them the equipment (which includes a lot of testing and designing all of which I am personally involved with), secure racers (some of which are difficult people to talk to) and their cars, negotiate with racetracks for permissions to shoot, discuss how we will set up our shoot so that we don't disturb the actual race operation in motion, after making sure that our equipment in the cars complies with racing regulations for safety and others factors?
I usually travel there before the race weekend starts sometimes before the crew arrives. I location-scout the track, which is usually a vast area, to decide where to shoot from and how. I meet the track organizers, the race organizers the racers and their mechanics. I befriend the mechanics with my crew as they have to work together in harmony so all can do their job undisturbed while the race is going on. I am a connector.
I set up our production office which is sometimes in a room made available for us, sometimes in one of our trucks.
I have several camera crews, sometimes up to four. Usually two of them consist out of two people, a camera man and a sound man. I brief all of them as to the terrain, the procedure of the race, the location of the cars, the people they have to shoot and in which priority. I give them different rolls. I.e.: You take the long lens and stand on this hill and shoot these cars as they drive by, then you go over there, then you go over there etc. Here is a list with the cars and their numbers, here are the times when to be where and here is an example of the framing I need. You two go to to the paddock and stay with this car xyz and their crew until they leave to line up on the grid. Then you take bike and meet us on the grid. You two stay with me in the pit lane with a wide angel and we shoot driver changes and refuel and interview drivers and crew as everything is in motion. You go over there......etc etc
All of these people are connected to me through walk talkies. I myself rig tiny HD cameras to the cars (sometimes 6 or 8 of them) in 4 or 5 different cars, in the angels I need. Lock and load them and fire them up prior to race.
The moment the race operation starts that involves qualifying rounds and a huge number of different races (over a weekend up to 20), usually everything changes: Times for races change, cars drop ours (sometimes our featured cars, so we instantly need to switch to others that have not previously been lined up, which involves getting permission and exciting the drivers to be in our film in a hurry). Camera equipment has problems (for example if you have 10 cameras running at the same time). In between all of this flash-cards and batteries for the cameras have to be replaces, re-loaded, media has to be downloaded.
I as the ultimate decision maker have to control all of it all the time to make sure it all happens and I am with everybody in contact at all time.
All of this happens against the backdrop of an incredible noise level that just never stops which is extremely stressful. Every thing is always in motion and we always have to change location with heavy equipment, by car, by motorcycle and a lot by foot. For me it is usually 20 hour days for 4 days in a row. On the "Carrera Panamericana" a 2,000 mile race crossing Mexico it was 10 days in a row. It is not an easy thing to figure out how to shot a 7-day, 2,000 mile race, covering three race teams and then actually pulling it off. I am the one who figures it all out because every one of my crew member is completely occupied with his own duty and cannot see how it all will come together.
Later I do edit with an editor. Which means I do not operate the editing software but the editor does. Basically I operate form "System 1" and he from "System 2". He will also load and convert the footage. This is all done in HD which is much more complex than standard definition. There are hundred of different codex' out there and every camera type is different. But the editor can't just edit it together because he has not clue how the enormous amount of footage was shot and how it belongs together, and what happened when. So I sit with him at all times and tell him what goes where shot by shot ("System 1").
In danger of sounding delusional again I am pretty good at that and regularly astonish experienced editors as to how I know where all the footage is and how it can fit and make sense and look good. Once there is somewhat of a skeleton structure the editors improves certain section on his own but only to then present them to me. We sit together again and change it again. That whole process takes usually one month or more.
In the end we perform a color correction which will ensure that all the different cameras look like they where just one in terms of light, color, contrast. By that time there are thousand of edits in a one hour film and it is a very tedious process. Shot by shot. Another thing the editor cannot do alone.
Same with sound mix and on-lining for broadcast. Every single detail has to be checked by me as I am the one who carries the complete responsibility for everything. To assume that it DOES NOT involve blood sweat and tears is just plain wrong.
I have shot twelve of those one-hour long documentaries in many different parts of the world. I have been invited as a speaker to talk about the production of this series several times. Two times I was invited speak at the aforementioned "Madison Avenue Sports Car Driving And Chowder Society" and to become their member. This club has a long list of famous speaker. Last month it was Edsel Ford, of the Ford motor company.
I am here in the US on an O-Visa. From Wikipedia:
"An O visa is a classification of non-immigrant temporary worker visa granted by the United States to aliens "who possesses extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics, or who has a demonstrated record of extraordinary achievement in the motion picture or television industry and has been recognized nationally or internationally for those achievements [...]"
You can't fake it. I had to give many work samples and about a dozed official letters of endorsement from international industry leader that were officially stating to the DHS, not that I am halfway decent or pretty good, but that I am the best in my field of expertise.
The bottom line is I think the best is for me to cancel the project and sort out my own pathology otherwise I am only going to be a burden for others. Unless somebody has a really bright idea, which is unlikely.
The main reason you can't do it is because you haven't got a clue about making a film
I am making films since over twenty years. Long before I meat my wife, who "payed for my carrier" and after I separated from her years ago. I have a fan base who loves my films. Testimonials are on my GTracerTV website. Many trailers are online so anybody can look for themselves.
I do realize most here are not into cars or racing. Discovery bought my stuff because they liked it not because I am buddy with some Discovery person who happens to live at the address where my company was incorporated 15 years ago. (I'll call my accountant now.)
To think I could do it connected but not-connected was worse then hideous because it did exactly what we have now. Everybody thought my project was backed up by the Chateau even though it was not, thus giving everybody now the feeling of being deceived by me.
Because you WERE deceiving everybody.
But I said that:
Everybody thought my project was backed up by the Chateau even though it was not, thus giving everybody now the feeling of being deceived by me. And basically I did deceive everybody because I wanted to be right.