Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Post #18: Polishing

Well, the exam was on Friday, so we screened 'Fragments' for the class. We got some valuable feedback that we really appreciated, and now all that's left to do is to polish up the final cut a bit more, and try to tighten up the film. I'm going to propose to Adam and Grant that we film one additional scene for the end of the film to help tie everything together, and then the whole project should seem a bit more cohesive. (Basically, instead of ending with Late-Night Larry's conclusion in the radio station, we should add another scene of Larry writting his radio script, just so that it's clear that they were fictional, which didn't really come across in the origional cut.)

Alright, so even with the semester over, we've got some work still to do. Once the final cut is complete (adding the extra scene and fixing up some audio levels) we'll get copies to each of the actors, and try to post the film online (if not the whole thing, then at least a few scenes...depends on copyright, etc.) After that it's just print the poster for our portfolios and decide where to submit the film.


Sunday, May 1, 2011

Post #17: Wrapping Things Up

Well, the deadline is rapidly approaching, and we are uncomfortably slogging through the final stages of production while simultaneously editing furiously in order to get a cut together by Friday. Today we shot Larry's sequences with Michael in the radio station (quite a fun location), and some night next week we need to shoot the last two sequences with Rob (yes, I realize that it is ridiculous to still be filming so close to the end, but what can we do? There were just too many conflicting schedules to match up this time). we're also getting extremely discouraged (a nice way of saying completely freaked out) about the fact that the script seems to make no sense anymore. We've been through so many re-writes that we've lost count ( ten or twelve, I think), and when finally got a chance to breath and re-evaluate the final draft, it seems to have lost any semblance of a plot. The moment of truth was probably when I showed the script to my brother this morning in preparation for the shoot, and he confirmed that it made no sense. Needless to say this was very discouraging, especially since we've been working so hard on this project. I guess we bit off more than we could chew this time...


Sunday, April 24, 2011

Post #16: Grinding It Out

Well, here we are towards the end of the semester, and we're still working like crazy. This week we've been trying to determine how to feasibly complete our film by the final exam date, and the harsh reality of just how little time is left has been quiet discouraging. Right now we're toying with cutting out a character whose scene just isn't fitting in well (also, it's a scene we haven't shot yet, so leaving it in there would leave us with a lot of extra work). We've also hit a snag in that one of our actors who's (relatively complicated) sequence we need to finish shooting is out of town most of next week, so we'll have to work really hard to schedule his last shoot in time. On top of that, we still need to cast the part of Larry. Thankfully that's a one-night shoot with a relatively easy location (the Knight Radio station), so we can accomplish that pretty easily once it's scheduled.

Well, that's pretty much it. now it's just keep editing, finish filming, and hope it makes sense by the time it's all stitched together (I really hope it does).


Sunday, April 17, 2011

Post #15: Production Continues

Well, we've hit what is probably the mid-way point for production. We've made a few cuts in the script, and should have a final, final draft by Monday. This week we completed filming three scenes: Rob's introduction, Rob at the last bar, and Jessie's scene. Last Saturday we had filmed Rob's intro scene, which went very well except for the discomfort of having to work in 88 degree weather under a mid-day sun (Yuck!). Then on Wednesday we had a lot of fun shooting Rob's second scene. We were given permission to use the side-bar at the Irishmen Bar in Boca, and had a wonderful experience shooting on location. The managers were extremely friendly and accommodating, and we all had a great time. Finally, we finished up the week by shooting Jessie's scene Friday morning at Christines. For this shoot we braved the use of the steadicam, which I wore during the shoot (and yes, it is very heavy!). We were very excited about getting to check out this equipment, but production time was very tight (only 30 minutes between classes), so we have to review the footage and decide if any pick-ups are necessary.

- Stephanie

Here are the pics!

Filming at the Irishmen:

Virginia and Taliesin running a scene:

End of the scene:

Adam and Grant hard at work on set:

Steadicam-ing at Christines:

Monday, April 11, 2011

Post #14: Early Production Update

So, production officially began last week, and to date we have had three official shoots! We are almost finished with Mike's scene, which we shot last Sunday and Friday, and then on Saturday we got a head start on Rob's scene and filmed the opening. This week is planned as the biggest week of production, and we will try to finish Mike, Rob, and Jessie's scenes. That way we have next week to shoot Eva and Larry's scenes, both of which are still going through some major changes, but require the least amount of on-location work.


PS- Here are some photos from Friday's shoot:

Below: Dawn light at 5:30pm for Mike's wake-up scene.

Below: Our DIY light rig to achieve the lighting affect showcased above. (Diffused 1000, blue gels affixed to barn doors with both gaffer and electrical tape, and Grant's closet door removed from it's hinges and relocated across the room for the venetian blind effect.) :-)

Below: Ahh! That door is possessed! (front view of the lighting rig)

Below: Giving direction to our actor Mike, who is playing the character of...well... Mike.

Below: The four of us (Mike, Adam, Grant, and I) crammed into Grant's bathroom during the shoot.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Post #13: Production Begins!

Alright, production for "Fragments" has officially begun! (Only, um, a couple weeks behind schedule). On thursday we met on location (a.k.a. Grant's apartment) to rehearse Mike's first scene with our actor, Mike. (Yes, the name thing confused me as well). After blocking the scene with Mike and working out lighting setups, we met again on Sunday for the FIRST DAY OF SHOOTING! YAY! It took a bit longer to set up than planned, but there were chocolate chip cookies so everyone was in a good mood. We managed to film the living room scene today, and had to push the rest for the next shoot (where hopefully we can schedule more than an hour and a half total filming time, schedules allowing.) Overall, it was a pretty successful shoot, and we can't wait to meet and look over the footage on Monday.

More updates to come, along with pictures from the first shoot.


Sunday, March 27, 2011

Post #12: Script Overhauling

Whew, what a week! On top of the Student Showcase of Films Awards Ceremony on Friday and being constantly busy with the Nuremberg project, "Fragments" suffered a script melt-down. After consulting with Professor Watson, who gave us some much-needed tough love in terms of the state of the script, we decided to devote this week to a complete re-evaluation of the project. I must admit, on Wednesday we almost considered 'starting over,' so to speak, by completely re-writing the script. We decided we needed to take a break and re-convine the following day before we did something impulsive that we'd regret later (such as ripping the script in half and deleting all of the final-draft files.) By Thursday we felt a bit better about having to address the script issues, and after some brief consulting with Zac Weaver we realized that we might not need to change as many things as we thought (thanks Zac!)

Anyways, to make a long story somewhat shorter, we met on Saturday at Starbucks (couldn't take being on campus that many days in a row) and 'fixed' the script. This consisted of adding another layer of narration that should help lead the audience through the film without muddling the concept. I promise, more details will be available once I have time to write about them. For now, the great fix will have to remain ambiguous.