The Beginning

Documentaries are so underrated.

It was on Rasa Sayang, my first documentary that I discovered that my calling in the world of filmmaking was in documentaries. There's just something about capturing the real and raw moments of the characters in their own world that really captivated me. And then, of course, there are all those hours in the dimly-lit editing room where the stories are written and put together. People often overlook editors by going "oh you just put the film together, right?" and while I have to grit my teeth and nod since that is not technically wrong, editors do way, way, WAY more than that.

In non-fiction editing, they are also the writers. I like to see it as taking a great number of threads and weaving them into something beautiful. This so special because the stories often told itself. I didn't think that I would go back to the art of directing films at all after the many failures in my early days of film school which, to be completely honest, I should at least give myself some credit for. I mean, all our first films sucked, right? And for someone who has zero filmmaking experience at the time, I think I at least deserved an A for effort. 

This is really becoming a write-up of how documentary making changed my life but another form of art that this art form has introduced me to? Producing! Man, I still don't even know how to truly describe the job of a producer. All I know is that producers make things happen and it's kinda like magic because for me, at least, I just do what I feel is right and needed and then movies get made because of it! A lot of paperwork though....... and I still have a lot to learn about producing, just as I do about directing and editing. Aren't we just always learning anyway?

I didn't dare call myself a filmmaker until I started making documentaries and I think that is so profound because by then, I was already a senior in college. It took me that long to figure out what should have been a no-brainer for me and luckily, I seem to have a knack for it. 


Welcome to Chey News where I swear I will at least try to keep updated as often as possible. Here, I will chronicle my filmmaking adventures.