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December a film by Gary Dresden

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Director’s Statement

Director’s Statement

Almost everybody wants to make a statement, to etch his or her own personal signature on something of importance. What better vehicle than film. “A picture’s worth a million words” and the imprint should last forever.

Like most everybody, I want to be loved, listened to and heard. But I also want to be remembered, without my ideas and deeds being lost in the swirling winds of time. As an Obstetrician and Gynecologist, I have been proud of my contribution, the difficult deliveries, the difficult surgeries, and concomitantly, the lives that I’ve touched and saved. But the clarity of these actions fade with the years and the feelings go unremembered, lost forever in the bottomless wastebasket of forgotten memories.
With “December,” I get my wish to preserve, for all time, my feelings about family and career and to contrast the devils of temptation that pull us away from the only thing that matters most of all, our family.
What I didn’t realize was, as the filming progressed, that I was getting a mirror reflection of who I am and some insight into how to make myself better. In the process of directing, I found that I could easily extract certain emotions from the players that brought the film to life and created some powerful moments.

Hostility, anger, resentment, arrogance, righteousness, vengeance, impatience, and irritability were emotions that I easily pulled out of the actors like flood water flowing through a ruptured Dam. What I also found, much to my chagrin, was that I had immense difficulty explaining how to show emotions such as tenderness, warmth, forgiveness, fear and vulnerability etc. In order to do this, I needed to employ the aid of the players and crewmembers.

With each day of shooting, as the story sprung to life and vague ideas and images grew into clear visions, I had an epiphany when I began to understand that no man is an island. He can’t do it alone. Filmmaking is a collaborative event.
I began to understand that each person on the set, no matter how low their position, might have an eye opening and important contribution if I just listened to them. I grew into a more depth full, patient and tolerant human being in the process that, in the end, allowed me, with the help of my crew and my cast, to weave a stronger and more impact full story.
I thank the gods that be for the opportunity to make this powerful story, get a better understanding of myself, uncover a host of new friends and leave a legacy with meaning and value.

Gary A. Dresden M.D.
Director