Today, we have something a little different than our previous posts. One of the main reasons that I blog is that it gives me the opportunity to talk with creative people at all stages of the process. Some are just starting out, and some, like today’s guest, have been practicing creativity for quite some time.
Crystal Stevens is the screenwriter and executive producer of an upcoming film called “Organized Criminal.” She and I first discussed the film in June of last year after it had finished shooting, and they were still working on all of the editing.
Let’s jump into the interview, and we’ll pick up the conversation from there.
A lot’s happened since we last talked. Can you tell our readers how “Organized Criminal” is coming along?
It’s coming along very, very well. We’re getting loads of great feedback to the trailer, the rough cut, and the polished cut. We’ve gotten many comparisons from viewers to some high quality stuff we’re proud to be compared to, shows like “Law and Order,” “CSI,” and many others. We are currently searching for funding on the feature film.
I think I saw on Facebook that you were ready to enter some film festivals a while back. Were you able to submit your film?
Yes, we’ve gotten that process started and actually are trying to decide eventually where “Organized Criminal” will premiere. We’ll know very soon.
The trailer for the film looks fantastic, and I can’t wait to see the finalized film. Here at Revive Your Creativity, we talk a lot about storytelling and the necessary determination required to complete a project. Can you tell us about how long you and your team have been working on “Organized Criminal”?
Even “necessary determination” doesn’t quite describe it. It takes more than that – much more than that. And if you’re ever serious about making a project happen, no matter what occurs, just keep going. And forgive me for borrowing from Scarlett O’Hara here, but “After All… Tomorrow Is Another Day,” don’t ever forget those words, and again, just keep going.
My business partner Joe Giacalone and I have a good two years invested here – long process – and one year alone on the short film. This due to certain talent in post of course working on numerous projects. But looking back, it’s all been well worth it. We’ve all learned a lot and right now the most important thing is that we have a short film that we’re very proud of.
We mainly talk about the writing side of storytelling here, but can you inform us what all you’re doing in your role as producer? How do your efforts ultimately help the story get told?
Producing is crazy, because the duties are so endless and so full of surprises, you never know what new skill you’ll have to pick up and master next. It’s challenging for sure, and raising money is probably the hardest part, but beyond that, you’re involved with each and every creative aspect in addition to each and every business aspect:
Contracts, release forms, distribution, festivals, the script, posters, the music, promoting the film, etc. And in this case, it doesn’t stop there as I’m also working on efforts to finance the feature, so there’s lots to cover – possible casting, making sure the budget is accurate, engaging in talks with potential producing partners, or actors, on and on.
Believe me, getting the story told requires a huge commitment from any worthwhile producer. But let’s not forget that while a producer makes many calls, at the end of the day, it’s the others that come in to carry them out. They bring their ideas to help get that story told. It truly is a collaboration, and I’d say choosing the right people to help get that story told is crucial. Naming all of them and what they’ve done would require a whole separate interview… suffice it to say that our team was outstanding and we are grateful for their contributions.
If people want to keep up with the latest updates for “Organized Criminal,” where can they find you online?
We’d LOVE for people to come on over to Facebook and ‘Like’ our “Organized Criminal” fan page! Lots of updates coming there, and it will soon be re-designed with our new poster, and our trailer… of course, I also post updates frequently on my own Facebook account as well.
Thanks for your time, Crystal, and we’re excited to see what’s next for “Organized Criminal”!