“We were married for three days in 1989, and I saw you on the subway…”
Those words are the beginning to what is considered one of the best-of Craigslist posts. The writing appeared in 2014 and the author is left wondering what has happened to the woman he had married for three days when they were in university. He tells how they met, why they married and how they drifted apart.
The writer spots her on the subway some 25 years later. They didn’t get the chance to speak, but he writes the post in the hopes they can connect.
Is it true or a hoax?
To director John Swansiger, fact or not, he merely loved the story and he made it into a short film that lasts about 12 minutes with the credits. The title is Three Days and it was recently released online.
Follow the link here –
“About two and half years ago [I met with a] friend from work and we got drinks,” said Swansiger. “We talked about projects we like and movies we wanted to make someday and I was telling him I’d like to make a short film. “He said ‘you should check out this Craigslist post, I don’t know if it’s real or not but it’s spreading all over the Internet.’ It’s an incredible love story, whimsical, a real great read.”
Swansiger read it and immediately wrote a screenplay and so did his friend, Mike Leavitt. They exchanged screenplays, mixed and matched the best parts, rewrote the drafts and the pieces started to fall into place.
“We made a corny campaign video and we got some funding and we started casting. It took a few months.”
The script eventually found its way to Charlie McDermott – best known as Axl Heck from the television show The Middle – and he wanted to be part of the film.
“Charlie’s cool and laid back and down to the earth,” said Swansiger. The love interest role went to Haley Ramm. “Charlie and Haley contributed great work to the project.”
Swansiger hails from Canton, Ohio and works in television development in Los Angeles. He found time to do Three Days on weekends and nights.
“Hopefully one day [filmmaking] won’t be a hobby,” he said. “’Til that day, you have to pay the bills.”
There is a lot of work involved in a short film. Swansiger noted the latest feature films released in theaters can be multi-million dollar projects with hundreds and hundreds of people involved.
“We had $6,000 total for the whole thing and a handful of people from beginning to end,” he said. He was forced to learn a variety of jobs, simply because the production couldn’t afford it.
Swansiger also gives much credit to the producers, Christopher Tung and Jessica Howard.
“This project would not have happened without them. They were with us from the beginning and worked some incredible producing magic to make sure that the project came in on-time and under budget.”
Of course, another component of a lot of films is the music. For Three Days the work went to Alex Taylor. “He is a phenomenal composer and is just waiting to be discovered,” said Swansiger.
Taylor comes from the same neck of the woods as Swansiger, as his hometown is Cincinnati in Ohio but landed in LA as well. What might be typical of a music lover, Taylor had aspirations of being a rock star but soon fell in love with film.
“Three Days was certainly one of my favorite movies to have scored, and I put a lot of thought and time into developing the right sound,” said Taylor. “Scoring a film is a fun yet daunting task at times.”
Usually, Taylor starts with a dialogue with the director to try and get into their mindset. Swansiger gave Taylor a lot of room to experiment but was adamant about having a guitar.
“I’m glad he pushed for it, because the guitar ends up being the most distinct voice in the score, I think,” said Taylor. “I wanted something that sounded nostalgic, since half the movie takes place in the 1980’s, but I wanted it to sound fresh and polished as well. We discussed the musical palette of the film, which ended up being a cool hybrid of organic and synthetic instrumentation.”
Taylor also ended up working onset as the assistant director, which is a rarity for him. The experience definitely helped him score the movie as well.
“I felt closer to the film and the characters than most composers have the opportunity to.”
The film also had few showings in festivals before the decision was made to put it on the internet.
“It’s been wonderful to hear [about Three Days],” said Swansiger. “People said they would watch another hour of it or watch it again or it reminds me of that. The response overall has been super positive.”