Why should I start small?

In 2014, an inspiring movie named Whiplash was released.

The story revolves around the relationship between Andrew, a drummer who has joined a prestigious music academy, and Fletcher, his instructor who will stop at nothing to realize a student’s potential and is often abusive towards them.

A still from the movie.

While the movie is pretty intense and focuses on pushing yourself to the limit, what interested me more was how this movie came into existence.

The writer and director of the movie, Damien Chazelle, had originally conceived it in the form of an 85-page screenplay. The screenplay got featured in The Black List — an annual survey of the most liked screenplays but not yet produced.

Chazelle wanted to convert his screenplay into a movie but he did not have enough money to produce it.

So what did he do?

He converted 15 pages of his original screenplay into an 18 minute short film. It received much acclaim after getting screened at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival.

It was this short film that ultimately helped Chazelle attract investors and get them on board to sign on and produce the complete version of the script.

The film was shot in just 19 days, with a schedule of 14 hours of filming everyday.

Chazelle was involved in a serious car accident in the third week of shooting and was hospitalized with a diagnosis of possible concussion. But, he returned the next day to finish the film in time!

The movie — made with a relatively small budget of $3.3 million — grossed a total of $49 million after releasing in 2014.

It won three Oscars, and was nominated in 5 categories including the Best Motion Picture of the Year.

The only reason behind this: Chazelle started small and made sure that his project resonated with people. Only then he went ahead with the full script.

If he had waited to start as big as possible, we might not have been fortunate enough to watch this brilliant movie.


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