Behind the Scenes of Oh Hell

This won't be your typical behind the scenes trip. Partly because the short hasn't been produced, so all there really is to go behind the scenes of is the script, but also because there's no video, so to go behind the scenes of my words, you'll just be stuck with more of my words. I think you've made your peace with that if you followed my link though, so here we go. I first had the idea for this short on Earth Day of 2010. I've always thought that the people who want to save the earth seem to care less about the idea of saving the people on it, and it's always been a little puzzling to me. It's always seemed like they were missing a bigger picture. But rather than tell any of them about it — I don't want to be stabbed with tofu, after all — I decided I'd take the passive aggressive route and put one of them in a script. In hell.

I don't want any of them to go to hell in actuality. I just think that sending one of them there in a script expresses an important theme - there's just no point in saving the earth if no one's around to enjoy it. A theme of humanity, ultimately, presented in the least humane place.

You'll notice, though, after you read it that the character who spawned the idea didn't end up being the main character. In fact, her environmentalism is hardly even mentioned in the script. I still think it's important, because while she won't help John with anything, she's ready to run off to her protests, but it seemed like I was just being petty if I made her only quality that she cares about the environment. It'd also make an awful, one-dimensional character.

Why do I tell you all of this? Well, I don't know, honestly. Maybe it's just that I want to let you guys in my head a little bit about why I'd aim for a lighthearted script in such a morbid setting. Maybe I just wanted another chance to express my feelings about environmentalism and explain how they tie into the script.

I don't think it's either of those things though. When I started writing this post, I thought it was important because it expresses something every writer should know — even bad ideas should be written down. Even misguided ideas can be followed to good conclusions.

If I had used my original character for my protagonist, I don't think I just would've had a terrible script on my hands in the end, I don't think I would've had a script at all. You wouldn't have wanted to read 5 pages where you're asked to care for her concerns anymore than I would've been able to write those pages.

But because I kept the original idea in my head (and my ideas notepad) for almost a year, a worthwhile script came out of it. I think that's all that life is sometimes. Telling yourself that you're not as stupid as you think you are and seeing where you can go when you get out of your own way. Surely the Muses have inspired far lesser creatures than you and me.