The short clip above may be the first principle photography footage from "Fragile Waters," released for public view. What I like about it is that it clearly illustrates a big theme in the film: the relationship between all living beings, big....or small.
Along with millions of Americans, I watched "Blackfish" last night. Having read "Death at Sea World," I knew the back-story and premise for the film very well.
Captivity - and the call to end or change it - brings out the strongest emotions. There's the obvious "business" component and those who stand to make (or lose) millions of dollars from the display of captive animals. But, the real root of the debate is the desire for parents to expose their children to animals in an "educational" setting.
Simple analogy: Put a Border Collie in a dog kennel for the entirety of its life. Study it, feed it, take it out to do a few tricks and take a dump everyday. Now, tell me what you learn about Border Collies from all of that. There's no difference between that and a 25-foot-long killer whale, weighing thousands of pounds, living in a cramped pool and performing a few times a day. The educational value of that is artificial. Still, it had its place in the 1950s and 60s, when a very tiny amount of people had firsthand knowledge of wild orcas.
But advances in technology, visual media, transportation and an evolving cultural conscience and concern for endangered species has rendered the need for performing marine mammals as "educational tools" extinct.
I hope more folks will see the film.
Because it really is about changing the mindsets of parents and consumers to demand a different "product." Sea World has a "good" side - research and conservation programs - but if that's done in the shadow of abuse, death and imprisonment, it will always be overshadowed by the downside. They need to make changes within to stay in business.
"Blackfish" is not a passing fad, it's a cultural awakening.
Hello Everyone! My name is Shari Macy. I am Assistant Director for "Fragile Waters."
We are about a month into production, and it's been a great experience involving planning, teamwork and some spectacular scenery!
As a First Nations female filmmaker, I feel the need to be part of promoting the sustainability of our ecosystems by living in balance with the earth, as my ancestors did. As a mother, I also feel a maternal guardianship to protect the incredible, yet fragile symbiosis that lies within all of nature. Not just for my children, but for all children, as we are all connected. Working on "Fragile Waters" has given me the unique opportunity to contribute and share these beliefs.
I am honored to be working alongside talented Director/Filmmaker Rick Wood. His work with marine animals sheds light upon the obstacles they face, along with viable solutions that work towards saving the species.
Thanks for reading!
The crew spent the day yesterday on San Juan Island. The mission was to do some location scouting, shoot some B roll and hope an orca or two dropped by.
Sadly, the killer whales did not get the memo. Still, we had some great success and it was a BEAUTIFUL day!
One thing we were about to do was shoot 1.5-minutes of underwater footage in the kelp forest that is one of the haunts of the Southern Residents.
The vibrant colors and hauntingly beautiful lighting gave us goosebumps after we reviewed the raw footage. This is going to be incredible when we finally do get lucky and get orca in the shots.
I'll be posting a short clip of our sample shots soon.
- Rick W.
Here's a render of one of our title ideas. Going for "simple" but catchy, with a bit of compositing mixed in.
I chose "Fragile" as part of the film's title because no other words so completely encompasses the current state of the health of Puget Sound.
The killer whales are endangered. The king salmon, herring and thousands of other species are, too. And all of them are codependent on each other for their survival.
It's like balancing running chainsaws on some cosmic scale.
Our friends at Orca Network know this delicate balance all too well. It's the reason they've put their whole existence into saving the Southern Residents. And, now, it's why we are making this film.
- Rick W.
What a day to be insulated from the machinations of the government and turmoil of its citizenry. I can only hope that calm and productivity will commence very soon.
What keeps me from even thinking about the political struggles of Capitol Hill is my focus on the life and death struggles in the Salish Sea. Working on a project like this means being immersed in its moving parts day-in, day-out, 24/7.
Right now, I'm filled with stories of fish and dolphin. From what I hear, it's a blessing, really, not to have the news of the day put me in a funk.
Life goes on... death and extinct don't slow down, even for Congress.
I've just finished the rough edit for a teaser trailer intended for fundraising.
It plays like a mystery, which is, after all, what the film is at heart. I am pleased with its look and now have given it into the hands of our composer, Peyton Winterowd-Laughman, who will score it.
This marks the first time as a filmmaker that I have not scored my own video. That's a frightening handing-off of creative control.
But Peyton is super-talented and I know whatever she'll do would be worlds better than my half-deaf, tin-eared attempt.
At some point soon I intend to update this site with a few short bio's of the crew. For now, just take my word for it, this film is benefiting from some of the most creative folks I've ever known.
- Rick Wood
Film director Rick Wood and co-director Shari Macy have worked on several multimedia, television and film projects.