Being a Boss Woman in Film
“Who does she think she is? She should be doing make-up tutorials.” was a common comment I got on my films on YouTube.
I remember when I started telling people I wanted to make films no one took me seriously. After all, I was just a teenage girl. I should have been concentrating on my homework, wearing makeup, talking about my dream wedding and how many babies I was planning on having, right? That’s what seems to be every girls aspirations – this is especially portrayed in like every movie ever. Although it was annoying having to avoid the stereotype of being a girl, I wouldn’t say being female in the film industry was a road block but rather a challenge that gave me strength to prove everyone wrong. I never considered my gender when I was creating, I didn’t think it mattered. All I cared about was making films. The great thing about people saying you can’t do something is that it feels all the more amazing when you prove them wrong.
My name’s Marina Bruno and I’m a 23-year-old female filmmaker! I’ve written, directed, produced & edited 16 short films and a feature film and I will never stop making films till the day I die. Wanna know how I made so many films? I never let anything get in my way; not any fears, doubts, not even the worst challenges that arouse in life, not even the nasty YouTube comments telling me to go “be a girl”.
Once somebody asked me “How do you come up with your films? And how do you know so well what to do when you’re on set?”. I never knew how to answer this question. A lot of people would tell me that they WANT to make movies but they just don’t know where to start. I was like that before I discovered this little hack that changed the way I saw filmmaking…
My secret to making films is I simple WATCH the film in my mind before making it. I literally see the movie in my brain. I even make popcorn and sit on my couch while I close my eyes and watch the show from the beginning, middle to end. I see and hear my characters talking and yelling at each other, I hear the background music, I even see the poster and title credits roll once it’s done. If you’re ever wondering where to start (I sure have had thoughts like that no doubt) you gotta just breath in, breath out, close your eyes and watch your movie. What story do you want to tell? What’s inspiring you to share this story with the world? Why are you telling this story? Once you can watch you’re movie before even writing the title on the cover page, the rest of the filmmaking process becomes almost effortless.
You may argue that filmmaking is no easy endeavour! Making a film is like going to war, facing obstacles, set-backs, overcoming challenges, dealing with crazy scheduling and not to mention the amount of heavy lifting and long hard days on set. But if you can see the film in your mind before making it, nothing is impossible and everything becomes possible. Let me explain! So do you ever have a ton of doubts and fears the second you decide you wanna make a film? Do you ever have thoughts like: “I can’t do this, I need more money” or “I don’t have what it takes” or even worse, do you ever hear others tell you why you can’t do it, giving you a list of a million reasons why? Do you ever literally talk yourself out of making a film you’re truly passionate about simply because of an excuse?! Well guess what, all those thoughts are coming from your own mind, and wanna know something? You control your thoughts! Even if it doesn’t seem like you do, you actually do. You 100% do. So the good news is that you can start erasing the feeling of worry from your mind (because let’s be honest it’s literally useless and isn’t helping anyone) and replacing it with creative ideas, solutions, passion, drive, purpose and confidence – all attributes that already exist within you! Once you’ve done this nothing can stop you and before you know it you’ll have an amazing film that will make your parents proud.
One thing I always tell myself is that there are literally NO EXCUSES as to why I can’t do something. No matter what,there is ALWAYS A SOLUTION FOR EVERYTHING! You need to know that YOU ARE A POWERHOUSE of infinite creativity, passion, and talent! You’re a superstar! Once you become aware of this, you will live a life full of passionate filmmaking and storytelling, and you will inspire the rest of us to do the same. When I decide I’m going to make a film, I know that I will and anything that comes up as a road block I simply find the solution, then keep moving forward until the end result is complete.
Watch my first feature film I made when I was 19!
Here is an example of some troubles I came across when making my newest short film “And…CUT” in Los Angeles. The film stars the YouTuber Kazzy Official and is a story about a group of YouTubers who are making a film. I had written the script about a month before shooting and spent a good amount of time storyboarding it. I sent the script to all my actors, locked in the location, got together all my props and costumes, hired cast and crew and scheduled a shoot day. To my surprise, the day before shooting my main actor Kazzy called me saying that he was denied entry into the States and was stuck in Canada! I was so devastated. Everything was ready to go, after all this work and this happened! Dammit! However, instead of giving up – because like I said there’s a solution for everything – we simply waited a few days and wallah Kazzy was able to get back into LA by fixing his tourist visa
We rescheduled the shoot and the way things turned out is we ended up using a new actor for the supporting role and he fit the part to a T (a lot better then the original actor would have). So things arrange themselves and always work out for the best in the end. Nothing is impossible, just breath and make things happen, no matter what happens!
Remember that next time you have any thoughts of doubt or fear or worry or a thought that you’re not worthy or capable of making films because of a stupid stereotype, remember that you’re also capable of thoughts of greatness, passion and unstoppable drive. All you need to do is watch your film in your mind and you will be able to make any film you want about anything you ever wanted. So I ask you, what’s your next film going to be about?
You can check out my shot films on my YouTube channel Wondering Pictures and also follow my behind the scenes journey on Instagram @marinabrunofilms! Also, my 2nd YouTube channel Marina Bruno has more behind the scenes vlogs were you can see exactly how I make my movies with little to no budget.