Pfister gave some inspirational advice to filmmakers as he addressed a packed audience at this years NAB Conference in Las Vegas. He spoke about the difficulty he faced in bringing the Transcendence script to the big screen.
“The point is perseverance and if you want to be a cinematographer you just pick up a camera and just shoot,” says Pfister. “You shoot whatever it is. You find the material to do. If you want to be a director you do your best to generate material and finding material. Its all about perseverance and not giving it up.”
Pfister spoke about how difficult it was to get Transcendence off the ground. “Just before Johnny read the script and we started meeting, this thing was shut down,” says Pfister. “It was way to expensive of a movie to do. It could have been one of five movie stars that could have supported a budget of this size and my producers called me and said ‘sorry, we made the offers. It’s not going to happen.’ I went in with one of my producers and started hacking it apart to see if we could get the budget to 50% of what we had and in the process, going back to the producers and asking if I could have my project back and do it with a fraction of the budget with another company. It was dead and I was going to have to resurrect it.”
Pfister had to do this over and over again then finally got the production up and running with offices at LA Center Studios. After the production was in full swing they were shut down again. It came back up eight weeks later and he ended up completing the film.
“It was a slow painful process and it would have never happen had I ever given up for one minute,” says Pfister. “I could have moved on to something else very easily. I had to make this particular movie at this time. Just don’t give it up, whatever it is. If you feel strongly enough about it, don’t give up.”