When I say that this film developed with me, I mean it literally. What the film was at the beginning of writing was not what it was by the end of filming. But I guess this is a cliche.
Two things happened my Sophomore year of high school that influenced Slim. One, I discovered James Bond reruns. I appreciated how many locations each Bond movie used. I wanted Slim to travel the world like James Bond--an out of shape, awkward James Bond.
The second influence on me was seeing epic roadshow films. Unfortunately, we don't use the word roadshow much anymore. It basically describes how a film was presented. Instead of cramming in as many showings in a day as possible, a theater would show a film maybe three times a day. The format of the film itself would almost always include an overture, intermission, entr' acte, and exit music. Check out The American Widescreen Museum for great information about roadshow presentations.
For me, I was introduced to the roadshow format through a school paper I wrote on the historical accuracy of film. The research introduced me to two of the greatest films of all time, Gone With The Wind (1939) and Doctor Zhivago (1965). They were such a great influence on me that I decided Slim would be a sprawling epic with an overture, intermission, entr'acte, exit music, and a 3+ hour runtime (yikes)! The film in my head became like David Lean meets Blake Edwards--what a combination!
The entire script I had written in 2005 really became just Part I of the overall script by the summer of 2006. After the intermission, Slim ends up across the world and on further adventures. This change in direction led me to film more in the second summer of production than I had in the first summer. Did I mention how important it is to have a complete script before production starts?