: Bob Gillen's Blog
: Producer Judy Bell in Santa Fe
We originally contacted New Mexico-based film producer Judy Bell about a project she was developing, a film featuring a Native American private investigator. Bell says, “The story, centering on the character Geronimo Jones, was to take advantage of the rich Native culture that is inherent in the lure of New Mexico.”
The story would also have focused on Santa Fe, the oldest capital in the United States, home of the oldest newspaper, and an old adobe that is the oldest house in the United States. “The rich history,” says Bell, “goes back over 400 years and, of course, much further in terms of indigenous peoples occupying the land.”
Hitting the Wall
Unfortunately, Bell had to fold the project. For a producer, knowing when to walk away is just as important as continuing on. “Life is an ongoing challenge. I've dropped that project for a number of reasons.”
“Balancing an urban Native American against the backdrop of one of the most complex and fascinating cities was intriguing and would provide vast marketing possibilities to promote tourism, the international art scene, and the Indian market.
“But in the end,” Bell says, “this marketing potential is what undermined the project, as the businesses around the plaza - arguably the most popular spot for tourists - do not want filming. It clogs the small streets, often isolates a business entrance for days at a time, and takes up valuable parking space for grip and other production vehicles.”
“Also,” she says, “the marketing ideas I had would have to go through the state and city film and tourism offices, be approved by the hotels, and who knows who or what else, so my creative enthusiasm hit the reality wall and I realized the odds of ever getting into production were slim to none.
“A producer puts everything into believing in and developing a project, and one must be tenacious and persevere. But at some point the facts have to be weighed and a decision made.” READ MORE...