Focus On – Mark Warner on “Goddess”
What attracted you to Goddess?
When I first read the script I thought it was a great idea for a film and wanted to be involved immediately. I had never cut a full musical so I jumped at the chance. I love music and Goddess had a bunch of original songs already written and they were terrific. After meeting with Mark Lamprell, the director, and Richard Keddie, one of the producers, I knew I wanted to do it with these guys. Fortunately they wanted me too!
How did you find the way to move between drama to song and back?
There were many designed transitions from the script and others designed and realised during production. Some worked really well and others had to be massaged. But most films are like that. Transitions are some of the more difficult aspects to get right. We had plenty to work with and were able to make all the movements from drama to song and back again work to our satisfaction. We used our imagination and tried different ideas until we got what we wanted.
Goddess is a mixture of drama, comedy, and music how did you keep the balance?
Fortunately the balance was well executed in the shooting script so we had very little to change between these different aspects of the film. We had no major structural changes. Most or our work was getting the tone right in each scene and overall pacing.
What was the hardest scene to cut? What was your solution?
Probably the “Goddess” musical number that was shot along the foreshore of Sydney Harbour. There were many conflicting opinions about the tone of this scene and it’s purpose in the overall film. We were in and out of it many times with a fair amount of controversy.
In the end, I did not do the final edit. Nick Beauman came in to take my place for a couple of weeks because I had to fly off to another film commitment. So the job of arriving at a final solution fell into his lap. I am grateful that he was available and willing to help me out.
What is your favourite experience?
Working and collaborating with Mark Lamprell during the editing period. We had a lot of fun. The cast was fabulous as was the music and it all came together in a very satisfying way.