In my last blog post, I talked a lot about “The Pivot.” – how my family took the pandemic lockdown and turned it into a new business: Award Pool. We are not unique in this. I have seen many small businesses taking steps to find a way to keep afloat during this difficult time. One of those businesses is one of my family’s favourite places, Film.ca.
I’m busy homeschooling the kids one morning in late March when I see a call for participants in a movie about the pandemic produced by Film.ca. The only requirement is that you live in our community, Oakville. We filled out the paperwork to get involved, and a couple of weeks later, we get the details. We are to use our video cameras, phones, etc. to film our family for one day – Tuesday, April 14. There is minimal direction on what to film and how to film it. Creativity is in our hands!
So we took shots of home school, Reuven working away on Award Pool, recess in the hot tub, walks with the dog, cooking, washing hands. We told the story of how we built our new business. I talked about my parents; the kids confessed how much they missed their friends. We sent in our footage, and that was that.
A couple of months later, in August, we are invited to see the movie premiere of One Pandemic Day. By now, I know 17 families took part, it was a feature-length film, and my dog had made the cut – other than that, I knew very little. Decked out in our Award Pool t-shirts, we sat in the movie theatre, masks on, to enjoy the premiere.
I was shocked at how deeply the director, Mikelle Virey, cared for the storyline and weaved each family’s hardships and perseverance into one story. We saw a Karate school that changed their entire teaching style to online classes. We watched an opera student record her songs in the bathroom for optimal acoustics. We saw dozens of unique work from home office set-ups and families juggling school and work all at one kitchen table. A teacher discovered how to teach online, and frontline workers found heartbreaking ways to keep their families safe. It was indeed a story of the ultimate “Pivot” for an entire community. Even though I don’t know them personally, I feel a bond with each of the families.
Film.ca found a way to keep their love of film alive and bring a community together. Now that’s a story worth telling. You can download One Pandemic Day at Vimeo on Demand. All proceeds go to helping Film.ca stay open for movei lovers and storyteller like me.