I think it was two years ago when I met Billimarie. Initially, I met her through a mutual friend, Ashten ‘Whoopi” Winger, via the internet, which, oddly enough, is how I meet a majority of my friends. We were supposed to meet one another on several occasions but they all fell through. It wasn’t until CampusMovieFest came to Cal State Northridge in 2008 that we met each other and ended up making a short in one week!
I directed and she edited. It was my first time ever shooting a movie and not editing the footage. In fact, it was my first time solely directing and having no direct hand in shooting or editing (Christian Valle directed and operated camera). It was a great experience and Billimarie was very nice and compromising. She never gave off an ego and never talked down to me.
She had trophies aplenty; most of them were achievements in filmmaking from festivals and such. Never once did she point them out to me, even when I asked she answered in a passing manner but with no tone of arrogance or conceit. Though her films and videos might not reflect it, she is very down-to-earth. I expect this was because of her parents’ guidance. They too were easy-going and friendly. She was the perfect role model for me and still is. She had all the qualities I wanted to have. She was gracious, humble, relaxed and most of all talented! In yet, I never felt jealous. I could only feel inspired.
A year ago she told me she was planning on making a then untitled film about people with box heads. At first, I thought of Jack in the Box (but then I realized that he had an orb for a head … I digress) but she was picturing something a little different. When I read the script for the first time, I admit, I didn’t get it. It took her several discussions and a few more drafts until I was blown away. I had pictured a world beyond the page, not just the story that was presented. I really felt Billimarie created a nice and familiar yet unfamiliar world with a grand Matrix-like back story (at least for me). But what really got me was the theme of love; a theme that I think is championed when coupled with artificial intelligence and robots. I enjoy the thought that love can conquer all, whether it be hate, violence, war, tyranny or even a droid ;-). There are also some underlining motifs about government control and regulation, which was also thrilling for me.
The production of the film was really fun. I don’t necessarily think there were bad days on the set, maybe a hot day or a cold day but never a bad one. Everyone had a lot of energy and was especially friendly with each other. Billimarie put together a fine cast and crew, notably Sean Hill who was just as gracious and amiable as she. I remember the night shoot being particularly fun, especially with the visits from the cops and such. Just like most directors, Billimarie was frantic and scatter-brained but she never lost her cool, never raised her voice, always keeping into perspective that she was doing this because she loved it. She respected us and we respected her. More than that, she liked us as people and we liked her back for being her!
Production ended and we all parted ways and Billimarie went into a fortress of solitude and edited away! A little less than a year later and now she’s released her baby to the world. This past Sunday she had a small screening for the cast and crew (as well as a graduation/birthday part celebration) and I had forgotten how much I missed and admired her.
So this is to you Billimarie! For being such a great filmmaker and a great friend! Congratulations to your release of “Corrugated Hearts!”
QUOTE OF THE DAY:
“Hide not your talents, they for use were made. What’s a sun-dial in the shade?”
– Benjamin Franklin
Peace & Much ❤
*Please be sure to repost/retweet the film if you enjoy it.*