Right, the new website is now up and running and all is good. However, there was one final thing that was missing apparently; our web development agency told me that we need to add a blog to the site, to drive traffic and create better search rankings for Capsule Films.
I’ll be honest, my heart sank a little at this news; the thought of yet another digital marketing blog to add to the infinite amount of blurb spinning through cyberspace. Do I really have anything to say that hasn’t been said before? In a more interesting manner? By more expert and qualified exponents?
Believe me, I tried every excuse going to avoid writing the dreaded blog or ‘drog’ (portmanteaus are v desirable in cyber-world), as I’m referring to it now. However, the web agency were insistent, nay, apocalyptic about the need for Capsule to have one. So with one arm twisted behind my back (the sound of one hand tapping so to speak!), here I am!
I suppose my biggest dread is that anything that I write would be dull and uninteresting; that really would be the most undesirable (and in fact counter-productive) outcome of the doing the ‘drog’ in the first place. So, what on earth do I write about? What the hell do I put in it?
This got me thinking and I suppose like anything else online, it’s all about the content, innit? Whether it’s a Facebook page, a Twitter feed, web copy, a blog, or (my particular area of expertise) an online video, content is king! And let me be unambiguous here, by content I mean the script! Before I started to work in digital marketing, I worked for many years in TV and feature film production and getting the script right, was something I fortunately learnt very early on.
Back in the early 90s when I was first starting out at BBC TV Centre, I was fresh out of college and living in London for the first time and working as an Asst. Floor Manager on everything from “The Late Show”, to Dale Winton’s “Pets Win Prizes” (yup, only at the BBC!). But what I really wanted was to move into drama production. I then had the great good fortune of working with one of the most influential and important producers at the BBC, the renowned Verity Lambert. Verity Lambert was the founding producer of “Doctor Who”, and has many other successful TV drama credits to her name including “The Naked Civil Servant”, “Rock Follies”, “Minder”, “Widows”, “G.B.H.” and “Jonathan Creek”. Naturally as I was such an eager beaver, I couldn’t wait to get to speak to Verity and to ask her several of my probing, yet insightful questions about drama (to be pronounced with a Maggie Smith-like intonation)!
To her credit, Verity was extremely tolerant of my tigger-like behaviour and even though she’d probably seen many, many other keen, eager, TV wannabes over the years, she showed the patience of a saint when she offered me the following piece of advice. “Tom”, she said, “just remember this; you can make a terrible film from a good script, however, you’ll never, ever make a good film from a terrible script!”
This piece of advice has rung true to me ever since; no matter what you’re making, (however much directing and production talent is attached to a film project), it will all come to nothing if the script isn’t up to scratch.
This has been a mantra I’ve taken with me ever since, especially during my time at the UK Film Council when I read literally thousands of scripts (shorts and features) and worked with hundreds of filmmakers during my five years there. Looking back at the most successful films I worked on, the one common denominator shared by all of them was a strong, developed script. Everything else, casting, art direction, cinematography, even direction, although important, are all ultimately secondary to a good script. So, if content is king, then (to extend the metaphor just a wee bit more), the script is the constitution upon which the whole project stands.
So, to wrap up the first blog I’ve written for the new Capsule website (phew, happy now web dev agency?), I suppose I’m saying that the script is the starting point for any project we produce at Capsule Films. It’s where the idea is developed, refined and creativity is unleashed. If the script is right, the final film will be too.
Right until next time, (not sure when that will be, however I am attending a blogging for business seminar in the next few weeks, so I’m sure I’ll have something to say about that afterwards), feel free to message, email, tweet or even just go old school and give me a call!
(How did I do by the way?)