Before making my first documentary (TRAILER HERE) I read a book on the craft. Seemed easy enough. Find a subject, ask them a bunch of question, edit it all together with some pretty shots of what they are talking about and boom, all done. Like most things in life it always looks easier than it turns out to be. Fortunately I picked a friend as the subject of my first documentary. And here is how the first interview went. I asked him a bunch of questions, and he would just sort of look at me funny and then start talking about whatever he wanted. Finally he said, “Kenton, stop asking me all these questions and just let me tell you the story!” So I did.
It was from this that lead to what I considered a very successful interview technique for Career Courier. I simply asked NO questions. That’s right. All the interviews are the subjects just sort of free flowing on the subjects I put in front of them. For instance, if I asked them, “What’s the best part of the job?” I know exactly what they would say, “the freedom”. But a two word answer isn’t what I wanted. I wanted them to talk freely for 20 minutes about everything that this career was to them. And I got it too. I would give them a word like, “happiness” or “frustration” or “pride” and they would just talk and talk about how the emotions related to life, love and being a courier. On average the subject would talk for about 3-5 minutes per word. And I never had to ask follow ups to the words. They would talk themselves out you could say.
And I think it really put the subjects at ease and that comes through in the film. Ok, I promised I would post a fun little film called surf check. But I’m to busy to put that together, so here is one of my first ever films shot in 2005 on messengers. Forgive me for I knew not what I was doing!
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