Orson Welles was once quoted as saying the absence of limitations is the enemy of all art, and if you use limitations to your advantage, you can get great results. This doesn’t just apply to B movies either. Every great filmmaker has had to deal with limitations in their films, and it often turned out to be the best thing that ever happened to them.
Who hasn’t heard the classic story of the mechanical shark repeatedly breaking down during the making of Jaws? By showing the shark less, the movie was even scarier, and as Steven Spielberg said in the documentary The Universal Story, “By the shark not working, it allowed me to be much more experimental and find a way to make the surface of the water, and the threat of the unseen, as powerful as having seen the shark too early. I think the film would have made half the money had the shark worked.”
A tale of how the movie industry used to do more with less and why you should embrace limitations.