Saturday, July 18, 2015


I’m heading to Edisto Island, South Carolina, for a week’s vacation with my family tomorrow. I have six grandkids, none of them ordinary but they can be normal, depending on your definition of normal. Their personalities are as different as sand and rock. This year only four of them will be at the beach with us. My task is to write a script for a movie I’ll make with the four of them. In the photo below, the actor on the right is visiting his Spanish grandparents and won’t be with us. (His three year-old brother hasn’t risen to the ranks yet.)

Stanard Studio Actors

First off, the script has to be short and feature four characters (three girls, one boy). It must be set either on the beach, in a room, or on the island; only in the summer time; only shorts or swimsuits for costumes.

Last year we shot a movie about a girl who “borrowed” a watch from her friend, accidentally fell into the swimming pool while wearing it and ruined it, and tried to get out of blame for it. After going over their lines and practicing, most of the grandkids stuck with it until we got a final shoot. My husband Doug edited what became a noteworthy independent movie.

Here’s what I’m thinking for this year. The kids find a bottle washed up on the beach. It has a map inside. They put their heads together and figure out it’s a treasure map with locations on the island. They follow the map to the golf course or marina or somewhere on the island and find “diamonds” (from Michaels craft store) near the pier. They get into a dispute over who found them first. As they’re standing on the pier, the argument turns into a scuffle, and the diamonds fall over the side into the ocean.

I know... this plot is about as interesting as one of Nicholas Sparks’ novels. We’ll look to the actors to pull out a winning movie.

Last year we used my aged Olympus camera to shoot the film. This year I have a new iPhone, which I’m still learning to use. Filming should be easier. At any rate, I hope the audio is better.

I’ll be back in a week, red as a lobster, exhausted, and five pounds heavier (we have great cooks in the family).  

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