FMP Shooting Days 1, 2 & 3

My Final media production (at this stage titled ‘Grandiose’) was filmed on April 17th, 18th and 23rd. The plan that I aimed to keep to was that I would shoot scenes (in order) 5,2 and 1 on Tuesday 17th. 3 and 4 on the 18th and scene 6 on Monday 23rd.

Preparation

Before shooting I had to make sure that everything was covered for filming to go ahead. Already the film shooting had been heavily delayed so above all else I wanted to make sure that filming would go ahead but also that all that I wanted filmed WOULD be filmed on these dates. Therefore everything needed to be ready and in a professional and efficient manner. I was already in a stressed manner due to a cast worry (more to be added in a later post specifically on the casting process) I went to the ellen terry building the day before to sort out my production folder and make sure that everything was fully ready for the next day. I photocopied 5 copies of my storyboards (which emptied my printing credits account) as well as 5 copies of my shot lists and log sheets for my Assistant Director (Laura Meades) to use and log shots and sound files for the two days shooting. (on the 3rd I used a couple of her spare sheets more on day 3) At this point I was unfortuantly told by 3 of my crew members that they would not be able to make either the Tuesday or Wednesday shoots for varying reasons (I will not name) but this created a massive problem for me on the next day shoot. The only confirmed crew members I had were myself, Laura and Tayo. This was not enough. I went through my online contacts essentially begging people to help out and was fortunate enough to be able to add Emma Bakowicz to my Tuesday shoot crew and Adam Broome to my Wednesday shoot (as well as Abdul who was added very last minute) I still thought that a four person crew was too small but it was all I had to work with. I sent emails and text messages to Irina of the quids inn and Richard of Central Vision TV to make sure that the locations were still OK to use and gave them rough times which I would be there. (10am for central vision and 1pm for Quids inn.) I also got in touch with the actors that would be required the next day (Chris, Rob, Dale and Ashlian) and asked them to meet me at 9.30am at Ellen Terry, with the exception of Ashlian who I asked to meet at Central Vision at 10am.

I put all the storyboards into separate folders for the sake of ease. they were all numbered for their scenes 1-6 and also a seventh folder for scripts which I saved for the DOP, myself and the actors. (there were about 10 copies which was helpful as they went missing over the few days) each folder contained 5x storyboards for that scene as well as 9x log sheets (3x camera 1, 3x camera 2 and 3x sound) There was also a prop sheet in folder 5 which was a mock up band contract to be used for that scene.

I then posted up a few words on my facebook to update the group as well as make a request to Gov to store equipment at his overnight as we would be shooting at his on Wednesday and this would save a bit of my production budget.

On the way home I also bought a load of lunch materials for my actors and crew. however I realised I didn’t have much to store the food in. I did make what I could to store in the fairly small cases, in the future I will make sure to prepare better for lunches during shoots.

Tuesday 17th (day 1)

Early start in the morning, I went to ellen terry to collect equipment and meet up with crew and cast, To say I was worried would be an understatement, I don’t think I’ve ever been as stressed in a morning as I was on this morning, so to get to the building and here the words ‘You can’t collect your 5D because it has not been returned yet’ was not the best thing to hear, I was also waiting around longer than expected for some of the cast and crew. I was using Tayo’s 5D aswell as the loan shops so was preparing for a 1 camera shoot if that’s what had to happen, fortunatly the loan shop managed to get me on of the photography students 5D’s as they were still available so I could continue with the scheduled 2 camera setup. This would save me a lot of time which was now even more the essence than it already was. I then ordered two taxi’s from ellen terry to Central Vision TV when we arrived I met up with with Richard and discussed how we would use the room, The problem with using this location was that it was still being used for work by central vision TV and Connexions meaning we had to be careful not to distract or annoy any of the workers as much as possible. The room we used was the room that I was shown  during my location scout so that was helpful, Ashlian brought along a load of props as well which helped with setting up the scene, these included folders, her iPad and her macbook, she also dressed appropriately for the role. The shooting went at about the same pace as I had imagined but because of delays in getting to the building I had to text the quids inn to say we would be delayed. Laura had essentially taken up the role of DOP aswell as AD and I had to take up sound so Tayo could do camera.  Emma took on the 2nd camera. Directing whilst concentrating on sound was difficult and I wouldn’t reccomened it to anybody. Despite the small crew we did get all the shots i aimed for and went on to the next location (quids) where we had a small lunch before starting with filming there.

Shot from location 1 from Scene 5

This scene I probably should have organised better, we used the lunch break as a chance to transfer footage across to my hard drive as well as charge up the camera batteries, however we did spend too long doing that and those working in the pub had other places to be. once I got round to shooting I felt that I was rushing a little bit to make up for lost time. Also in hindsight I probably should have got more establishing/cutaway shots. I’d like to thank the Quids Inn for letting me use this location and giving us all we needed during this scene in the film.

Shot of Rob at quids inn.

We then shot the final scene of the day but what will end up being the first scene of my film at the ‘lock up’ which is located behind the oak inn. This I knew would be the most challenging of the shots to get as I had not prepared fully how I would shoot the practice session, originally I had hoped to get my actors to learn a short composition but due to the last minute nature of my final cast this was impossible, I decided to frame the shots in a way that I could mess around with visuals and audio later on, although my actors all knew how to play their respective insturments so took part in a sort of make shift jam. We finished shooting this scene at about 8pm, I delivered all the equipment to Gov’s to shoot on the next day after thanking the cast and crew for a job well done during the day.

Screenshot from shoot (grading test)

Wednesday 18th (day 2)

The next day we met up early again so we could go shoot scenes 3 and 4 at Gov’s house unfortuantly we had a breakdown in communication with my actress and she thought we were filming on the 19th. I was worried as we could not get Chris to film the next day, luckily she said she would be able to make it down to coventry after 12. meaning that I would still be able to film allbeit on a delayed schedule. I offered Chris and the crew that stuck around a small lunch as means of apology and thanks for sticking around all morning. Tayo’s friend Abdul also offered to help on sound, I had never worked with him before but was happy for him to come along on Tayo’s recommendation.

Beyond that I felt that shooting went O.K we got the shots we needed but in hindsight I would have got some more cutaway shots. We did have some issues with sound however, and some of them were not recorded, we reshot the missing sound scenes just in case after realising this mistake.

Monday 23rd (day 3)

After a few days rest (well from my FMP anyways) I prepared to shoot the final scene of my film in the richard crossman building, we were using a mock ward. Now those of you that have read my script will know that I had originally aimed for this to be shot in a bedroom, however after discussing this with Laura (who was also using the room for her FMP) I decided it would be best to use the room aswell as the location would do more than some potentially awkward dilouge would have done. The actual shoot went well. I only had four crew members for this shoot, but as it was just a small scene using 1 camera anyway this wasn’t a problem. We had time issues to work with because as mentioned before Laura was shooting a scene from her FMP afterwards. (more on that in another post) because of that aswell I couldn’t celebrate a job well done too much, but I thanked all crew and cast yet again for their hard work.

Currently I am on the edit of this piece and this is coming together fairly well. There will be a lot more on the edit in future posts.

Below is the crew listing for all shoots aswell as a mock poster designed by Alexandra Balan. (updated poster TBC)

Day 1:
Actors: Chris Smart, Dale Driver, Rob Fodor & Aslihan Foster
Director: Shaun Jacques
1st AD: Laura Meades
Director Of Photography: Laura Meades
Cameras: Tayo Daramola & Emma Bakowicz
Sound: Tayo Daramola & Shaun Jacques (switched depending on scene)
Day 2:
Actors: Chris Smart & Jessica Noonan
Director: Shaun Jacques
1st AD: Laura Meades
DOP: Laura Meades
Cameras: Tayo Daramola & Adam Broome
Sound: Abdul
Production Assistant: Nicholas Urmston
Equipment Co-oridinater: Gov Chima
Day 3:
Actors: Chris Smart & Deborah McEwan
Director: Shaun Jacques
1st AD: Laura Meades
DOP: Laura Meades
Camera: Faye Minister
Sound: Nicholas Urmston

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