"The Production team of La Boda de Rosa tells us about their hookup with film production."
We talk with Cristian Guijarro (Production Manager) and Raquel Sánchez Amorós (Production Secretary) in La Boda de Rosa, the new Iciar Bollaín film, with the sustainability priorities built into the production.
What is that something unique and magic in film producing that creates true devotees of this profession?
Loved only by a few, this career requires persistence and passion to achieve results.
Cristian Guijarro, UPM in his third feature film, started producing short films until one of them, Graffiti (Lluís Quílez), ended up nominated to Goya and Gaudí prizes, became the winner of the Premio Forqué and was on the Oscars’ shortlist. In his latest TV series Diumenge, paella and feature film La boda de Rosa (Icíar Bollaín), he has been working with Raquel Amorós, a Production Secretary, both of them set in Valencia.
They have shared with us their thoughts on their profession, the way they like to work and the tools they prefer to use to save time for the important thing: making films come true.
Film production is not the most popular area among film students. It actually creates more rejection than attraction. How did you start doing production and what makes it so interesting for you to dedicate your life to it?
Cristian: I went to film school because I wanted to be a film director. It wasn’t until I had the production course, that I found my true vocation. In production, I really enjoy the pre-pre-production, when we shape the project, starting from the script. Then we design the production, search for a team that fits the project, the locations, tailoring the budget…
Early preproduction is a huge process and I find it fascinating.
Raquel: In my case, I met a friend working in a distribution company that used to explain to me what his job consisted of, and I was captivated by that story. Then, at university I focused on producing short films and kept producing… until now. For me, one of the most incredible things about film production is when you see the film on paper and after some time you realize you have made it a reality, a finished movie! We are very lucky because we can be in almost every process. We start long before the shooting begins, in pre-production, and then we wrap the production.
We are the first to arrive and the last to go, besides the post-production team, of course.
Do you think the work of production people is valued as it deserves?
R: I think that we, the production department, are undervalued, but…
Production is a completely vocational profession and if you do it, it’s because you love it.
C: I agree with Raquel, you need to have quite a lot of vocation to dedicate your life to film production. When everything is fine nobody tells you anything, everything is running smoothly and goes unnoticed. But when there is not a good production you can really tell and complaints come in, of course.
About making films come true, you mentioned earlier… Part of production managers’ and coordinators’ work is to choose the tools that will help the team bring a project to life. What do you value most about the tools that you choose?
R: Simplicity, being able to centralize information and save time. It is very important not to waste time searching for info or data in different documents or templates.
You have used willco in your last two productions: Diumenge paella and La boda de Rosa. What has willco brought to your production workflows?
C: Before willco, we used to have several documents in Excel for payroll management. Now it’s all together, online, and furthermore, it works as a database where several people from our team can access the updated information at any time. As a bonus, I also value the format: filling the information from the data confirmation form online is an advantage. We used to send an Excel file to the employee and the formatting came out all wrong, the fonts, the colours, everything. This is a bit more about aesthetics and personal OCD, but it’s important too :)
R: Regarding the hiring workflow, the fact that it is centralized and that the payroll company has access to the calendar of the team’s start and end dates, ensures a double-check of the process, making it much more secure.
As Cristian mentioned, we appreciate very much that we have been able to improve time management in hiring and payroll processes with willco.
Willco allows us to generate contracts and other legal paperwork using information from the cast and crew database and updates the documents quickly and easily. When working on the payroll, willco issues a report of the employees involved within a given month, with all the details necessary for their paysheet.
What features of willco would you like to learn more about?
The digital signature. We believe it would help us to reduce the amount of paper used and to be more sustainable as a result. However, we have the feeling that the digital signature it’s not fully established in Spanish national productions yet, and that’s why we are afraid that it may be a bit difficult at first, until everyone gets used to signing their contracts digitally.
But, for sure, this is the future and we’d love to try it soon.
Thank you for sharing your thoughts about challenges, tools and vocation with us. We’d like to ask you to make a wish before you go. A wish for producers and production teams of the future.
C: Plenty of well paid work for all those who work in film production. We need a new revised collective agreement and a revision of the working hours.
R: I wish we get more support from the institutions, and the national televisions are encouraged to produce more, in order to create more work and expand national culture in Spain.