Sunday, February 17, 2008

Editing begins on Sandburg film

The material is now quite overwhelming. Interviews with Helga Sandburg, Pete Seeger, Studs Terkel, Norman Corwin, Yevgeny Yevtushenko and almost a dozen other historians, scholars and poets and who have published extensively. They all have a unique view of Sandburg and an understanding of the 20th century far better than most folks. And still left to be interviewed is Sandburg's most thorough and modern biographer, Penelope Niven. Ms. Niven's interview has been intentionally delayed until this stage in the production so that her knowledge can be best applied to the film that has been germinating for the past five years.

As I read the transcripts and prepare to begin editing the film the task is daunting, but exciting. The story lines and anecdotes are numerous and illuminating, but they must be wrangled into a thread that sustains the viewer and delivers an engaging experience. If I were a quilter (I've known a few in my days) I suppose it would be like having a pattern but walking into the best fabric shop you can imagine and trying to pick out the patterns, colors and textures from a vast selection. This is where the film begins to take shape. This is where the hard decisions get made, and this is where the excitement really begins. Wish me luck, decisiveness and patience.