If you think making a movie is hard in California (or Cape Town) wait til you read this Vanity Fair piece on Sam French, who shot his short Oscar nominated movie Buzkashi Boys in Afghanistan….
[Producer] Ariel [Nasr] spent about a year in pre-production trying to get all of the permissions and approvals; it was definitely a long process. They say in Afghanistan you get nothing done until you’ve three cups of tea with someone. He had many, many cups of tea with many, many government officials.
Afghanistan is—by all metrics—one of the most corrupt countries in the world: that’s a fact. But we wanted to be totally above board, which is why it took us so long to get the production going. It took us a year, but we didn’t pay any bribes to anyone. We got people on our side, instead of going in and paying people off. We wanted the Afghans who worked on this film with us to be proud of it.
Look out for it at the Oscars at the weekend….