Lucinda Bruce, Film Producer

Lucinda Bruce, Film Producer

Lucinda Bruce is an Australian Film Producer with a background in Acting, Production and Broadcast. She has produced Shorts, Music Videos and several Feature films that have completed the festival circuit and have been nominated for awards internationally.

Question: How long have you been a producer?

Answer: I started my professional producing career after moving to Vancouver, Canada in 2013 though I did produce my very first short film in 2002 and worked on productions prior to that in my teens helping with logistics and such.

Question: What does your work consist of?

Answer: The list of things a producer does, feels endless sometimes but some tasks include developing the script with the writer, sourcing financing for the film, preparing all the necessary paperwork for the production, hiring talent/crew, overseeing the production, budgeting, etc. Some producers work as a team and share different responsibilities depending on the size of the production.

Question: You started your career as an actress, why did you choose the production path rather than directing?

Answer: In some ways, it chose me. When I moved to Vancouver it was with every intention of following my dream of becoming an actor, I auditioned for a role and got the part but the film never got made, then I discovered a friend of mine was working on a short film so I offered to help. I volunteered as the Stills Photographer but as the production progressed I was helping with all sorts of other things, helping wherever I could. Eventually the Producer/Writer sat me down and said how much he appreciated all the work I was doing and that he was going to give me the Credit of Producer. I had no idea really what that meant at the time but said that would be great and asked him what else he needed me to do, to which he replied, I was already doing it, and so began my first official producing gig and subsequent professional producing career.

Question: How long does it take from the moment a director entrusts you with a film project to the moment it becomes a reality?

Answer: This is a hard one to answer, sometimes a film will never get made. It’s a harsh reality but there are so many films that will never get made, and it’s not because it’s a bad script but sometimes it just doesn’t work out for a number of reasons. Some films make it all the way to production and still fail so there’s never a guarantee that a film will get made let alone get releases because it’s a lot of hard work and a plethora of things can go wrong at any point in time. If a Producer has optioned a script, that option usually lasts for about 2 years because that can be how long it might take to get the film off the ground and running. Some films have taken 17 years to get funded, there’s a lot of patience, perseverance and most of all passion required to get a film off the ground. Sometimes you’ll have a film for two years and it won’t get made, it will get taken back by the IP owner and given to another Producer and they may get it financed within 6 months, there’s a lot of hard work and a little bit of luck involved so it’s hard to say as it can vary so much. Other times, things can happen fairly quickly, especially once the financing is in place, you can go from development to pre-production to production within the space of 6 months. There’s no rhyme or reason to it, just a lot of hard work and hope that it pays off.

Question: What are the difficulties you encounter?

Answer: You name it, you’ll most likely encounter it. You have this hope, that if you do your job right as the producer, you won’t have too many problems but unfortunately, that’s not always the case. They do say “anything that can go wrong, will go wrong” so you have to be prepared for anything and roll with the punches as they come. There are some things that are simply out of your control like the weather, airplane flight paths, children and animals, but with a good crew most of the issues you face in a production can be overcome fairly easily.

Question: What has this job brought you personally and professionally?

Answer: It’s opened up the world to me really, I have gained so many friends and professional relationships that have given me so much, taught me more than I could imagine and let me travel the world working with some amazing people who have changed my life. You take the good with the bad and everything you experience helps you grow and become stronger and better. Like everyone else, I’ve made mistakes but my support network helps me grow through them. It’s not an easy job or profession to be in at the best of times and having people around you to help you work through it and gain from it in various ways has been the best gift and I know it’s what I was meant to do.

Question: Is it difficult as a woman to work in Hollywood?

Answer: Yes and No, I have moments where I’ve wanted to quit because of things that have happened, I get told I need to be harder, stronger, more of "a bitch", thinner, to wear more makeup, smile more, don’t laugh so much, if I put my foot down or create boundaries I’m a "bitch" and a fraud, when I smile and agree I’m great and they’ll sing my praises. The same issues still exist but not as often and really, all it does is help me weed out the people I don’t want to work with, so it can be a good thing depending on your perspective. Finding my own way, has been hard, I was working in this industry well before the #metoo movement, I’ve lost jobs for filing complaints and generally “being difficult” because I was working in traditionally male jobs, but I didn’t let it ruin my love of film and because of my experiences, as bad as they were, I now am in a position to prevent it happening to other women in the industry. I want my sets to be the kind of sets I never got to work on or experience and I refuse to allow others to make it difficult for me as a women anymore.

Question: How do you think women are perceived in this environment?

Answer: I don’t spend much time thinking about it to be honest, a common misnomer is that producers are evil, money hungry people and the females versions are worse but it’s an old perception that is starting to die out along with the dinosaurs of the industry, thankfully. I know there are a lot of issues and incorrect attitudes and notions of what women should be in this industry, some I mentioned in my previous answer, but I find myself having to deal with them less and less these days. Sometimes it’s more about deconstructing what we believe others want us to be and allowing ourselves to be true to our own needs. I still encounter people who can’t believe I’m a film producer because I’m a woman, but there were female producers arguably before there were male producers, women started this industry. Women often don’t know or forget that and we need to encourage and empower ourselves, and each other, to look past the perceptions of individuals and society and overcome them.

Question: What do you like most about your job?

Answer: Entertaining people, it’s what I was born to do and I hope that I’ll be good at it one day, every day is a learning curve but I just love invoking emotions and making people feel and connect. I want them to experience what I experienced the first time I watched a movie, the first time I felt that connection to a character or a story.

Interview by Adama Toulon.

© Photo: The Starlight Heist


Lucinda Bruce - IMDb

Lady of the Light Productions