More Production Days

As I gear up to try and get us back on a post-holidays shooting schedule, I realized that I never broke down shoot nights 14 and 15 of episode 9 for the blog here.

Saturday, December 13. 6pm-11:30pm. Many people were very ill. Suede, our resident bad guy looked like death between takes. Eliza was our main sound operator and she was nearing the peak of a terrible cold. I put it up for a vote where we should get dinner from and the Damon Team actors banded together to make Chipotle happen. I think I may have an irrevocable line-cross in one of these scenes. For those who don’t know, crossing the line is when actor’s eyelines don’t match between edits. If one actor is looking to the left of camera while having a conversation, their scene partner should be looking to the right of camera in their shot. Having shot one scene over the course of two nights, a little blocking got changed and one side of the eyeline changed. I tried reshooting the other side the following night, but wardrobe had changed, so I’ll probably have to go with the eyeline stumble. We rocked through our shotlist, getting some really great performances and shots, stacked our gear in the back, and called it a night.

Sunday, December 14. 5pm-10:30pm. Again, people were very sick. Eliza came in at the beginning solely to bridge the gap until I had a last minute sound team replacement show up in the form of our occasional helper Miguel Franco. Nice dude. We had much less to shoot this night, got dinner from a fantastic greasy grill place called Michael’s Hotdogs, where Eliza and I allowed ourselves to have fried chicken fingers and melted cheddar with our fries. Neither diet nor disease could hinder our high-caloric revelry that night, my friends. We had much fewer pages to shoot that night and wrapped a half hour early. It took me a little over an hour to get everything loaded up and out to the car. I dropped the footage into our main and back-up externals and glanced through some playback. This episode is going to be great.

One of the things holding me up from scheduling shoot days since we’ve returned from our holiday travels is how much I still need to locate. I need to come up with 12 new locations, of which I’ve so far found 2, and 23 new actors for very small parts, of which I’ve so far cast 4. It’s just a lot to think about. I think I’m going to call upon our network of actors to see if anybody has leads on enthusiastic potential participants and location loaners. I feel like I’ve already almost exhausted my knowledge of places I know. But I’m slowly working on it.

In the meantime I’ve been editing a little bit. There’s a really long glidecam shot that I’ve been wishing was steadier, so I tried running it through an After Effects stabilization process called Warp Stabilizer. Did not do a good job. It’s usually pretty good, but this time there’s too much motion in too many directions. So I’ve been going through and stabilizing it myself. It’s a long process, but I think it’ll look a lot better at the other side of it.

Thanks for reading, y’all.

–Jake

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