ERKEKLER // the Carnist Method of Art-Making

So me and my friends made a short film.

In total, it took about fifty-five days of pre-production, five days of proper production and roughly fifteen days of post-production. Not all of these days fully consisted of billable work hours. The writing started in late April. The actual act of writing itself took more or less two hours. At the end of those solitary two hours, there was a first draft. The following few days were spent editing the text, which produced the second draft, which in turn was oxidised immediately by being shared with people. Their opinions led to the third draft. 

Then, came the invitations.

First, the actors were invited. Then, the director of photography came on board. Rehearsals started digitally, then the production designer joined the effort. A chance encounter led to a storyboard artist coming on board. Location was chosen, a shoot date was set. Everybody gathered at the location the first day, rehearsed for a couple of days, shot for three and went their separate ways in the end. The movie was edited over the course of twenty days, with screenings to understand momentum in between. Now it’s done, if it can’t be called a great short film; it’s damn certain that it can at least be called a short film and all the short film festivals are asking who the director is.

I don’t know. I was there for all of the days of this collaborative art-making and I’m failing to understand why this is a requirement. This wasn’t any one person’s singular vision. The writer had no idea how the angles would work once camera was involved, the director of photography didn’t concern himself with dressing the set, the production designer hadn’t heard the cadence of the dialogue in her head as clearly as the writer did and nobody understood how actors did what they did and they seemed to be working best when they themselves didn’t need to understand all the other things.

So who’s the director again?

Because the movie is titled “ERKEKLER”, which means “MEN” in Turkish; it’s about fragile, toxic and suffocating masculinity and I came to believe that the title of director, alongside all of our ideas of a vertical hierarchy; might just be the result of this very thing we’re discussing.

Perhaps we don’t need to be so carnist in our approach to art-making. It might not be so bad to be a little vegetarian. 

Who knows?