This post is by Logan Baker from No Film School

Written by Josiah Allen and Indianna Bell

After making a series of short films, myself and Josiah were itching to try our hand at a feature, but we knew that we’d have very little money to do it. We decided to follow in the footsteps of filmmakers we admire like Mike Flanagan and Trey Edward-Shultz and embark on the perilous journey of making a largely self-financed micro-budget.

From past experiences on shorts, we knew that our best chance of pulling it off relied on crafting a script around who and what we had access to.

We had previously worked with two brilliant actors, Brendan Rock and Jordan Cowan, and we knew from the get-go that we wanted them involved. We were surrounded by super talented crew who we had met at university and on sets, creatives who had accrued so much experience on other projects but may not have yet had the chance to be a head of department.

You’ll Never Find Me | Official Trailer | Coming to Shudder

To keep the concept achievable, we set ourselves a challenge; to write something set in a single location with two actors. A single location means saving time on shoot days—no laborious packing and unpacking every morning and evening. Extra time during shoot days means a shorter overall shoot, which ultimately means money saved. We decided to set our story in a mobile home, one that our art department built in a studio.

Whilst building and shooting in a studio doesn’t immediately scream “micro-budget,” it was one of our best decisions!

A studio set means creating a fully controllable environment, one that won’t be affected by bad weather, noisy birds or cranky neighbors.

It allowed our cinematographer Maxx Corkindale to have a say in all aspects of the design of the film, from the texture of the walls to the color and intensity of the ‘moonlight’ through the curtains. It also allowed us to shoot a film that is entirely set during the night during daylight hours- which certainly saved the sanity of the crew!

All of these seemingly clever decisions that we made early on that hugely benefited the budget and shooting process came to be our biggest challenges in post production. We had not anticipated how difficult it would be to edit a film that is set in one location and takes place in continuous time.

Suddenly, all of the typical tricks and tools that you have when editing a film were unavailable to us. We couldn’t jump time or cut a scene to finesse the pacing. The editing process became like finely knitting a jumper, we had to be careful that pulling a thread here or there wouldn’t completely unravel somewhere else.

In the end making a micro-budget was the ultimate film school. It’s an exercise in creative restraint, budgeting and how long you can hold onto your sanity for.

You can watch You’ll Never Find Me now on Shudder