Final Title, No – I Mean It This Time …
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I know, I know…
I have been chasing the title for this movie for a few months now and over the weekend finally settled on one that has no choice but to stick. People ask why I didn’t just stick with the original title of the story “I Do This Because I Love You” and I would have liked to but it’s long, like way long for a movie title. I think of the poor usher that has to climb on a ladder to put that on the marquee of the local movie house with his armful of letters (shut up and let me have my dream).
I can brainstorm all day long and I can make lists and I can try to be clever, but at the end of the day I don’t have focus groups. What I have is a bunch of people via text who take a really long time in replying, “Well, if that’s what you want to call it”.
It’s not a love story, so I didn’t really want anything with Love or Romance in the title, but sometimes my brain gets lazy and just wants cereal for dinner. I wanted a short, three-word title, because three word movies are catchy – “Twelve Angry Men”, “Pretty In Pink”, “Texas Chainsaw Massacre” and “Before I Hang” spring to mind, which is why a few weeks back I tried “Love Labored Lost”. It encompassed the feeling, it was short, and had three words. I was willing to let the “NO LOVE IN TITLE” thing go because I’d accomplished the other two objectives and I patted myself on the head. Yay me. Go have a cookie.
“No”, said my Text People, “it’s laborious and clumsy and has too many d’s.” I sulked for a week.
It’s the end of January now, and we’re at crunch time because we start table reads for this blessed thing in like a week, and I needed to be able to call it something that didn’t have (tentative) jacked at the end. I wanted my actors to be able to call it something without whispering “but she’s still working on the title” when they got horrified looks from their peers. I turned to my husband who once said he had a great title but he’d forgotten it, and I wanted to give him a chance at redemption. He threw out a few sinkers, mostly talking to himself (after 17 years you kinda get used to it) and as these things go, I’d tuned out 2/3 of his dissertation when I heard him say, “Over-something. It really should have the word ‘over’ in it.” I’d missed the PowerPoint presentation about why it should have “over” in the title, but I was willing to follow that thread and I nodded. Then he abruptly left and called his brother. Not every conversation is over when he calls someone else on the phone, but I’m no dummy. I can take a hint. The heavy lifting was done and it was my turn to do the thinking.
I went over to the whiteboard where we jot important messages like SOCKS and wrote two words, and when he returned from his call (“I’m going to talk to the wife now so goodbye” *click*) I experimented with punctuation marks and word placement. When he started looking at his phone again I settled on what we have now.
So yes, kids. the official title of the movie version of “I Do This Because I Love You” is *fanfare and confetti*
Whomever is my Marketing Department can get started right away on making that look ominous.