Ben Daitz got the idea for his latest film, “The Sun Never Sets,” while stuck in traffic outside Espanola.
“On a number of Wednesdays…I was amazed at the quality of the investigative reporting over the years of a small town paper that kept people informed about what was going on in their community.”
The ‘Rio Grande Sun’ newspaper still sold while other papers went under. At the same time dates was filming the story, technology changed in the film industry. High definition became a new standard and the 16 x 9 format took over for 4 x 3.
One part of production Daitz knew he had to keep consistent though was the sound.
“Particularly if you’re talking to people and you want to understand what they’re telling you….so I think sound, yes, is very important.”
“I had some good people I was working with…but there were also some problems…I can look at the film now and say I wish it had been a little better.”
The story itself is not something Daitz says he would change. He knows the six years he followed the reporters at the paper were worth the time to get a slice of the stories they worked on.
“When you’re covering a newspaper…I’m pretty satisfied with the end result.”
Taking time to tell the story added up cost-wise. Daitz says funding is still one of the hardest things about making a film. The sun never sets cost about $100,000.
One source of funding was winning the new visions award from the New Mexico Film Office from Governor Bill Richardson.
Daitz says his next film will be about a woman with autism who is becoming a filmmaker herself.