pre-pro My First Short Film

When I say my first short film, I don't mean my first scripted film that I am taking seriously. I have made dozens of microfilms, each of which I learned a great amount from. This will be my first film that I want to near 10 minutes long, have full characters and longer dialogue scenes. If all goes well we will shoot in 6 days and I can't emphasize how nervous I am. The script is pretty solid and the story is simple enough for me to realistically get done, but interesting enough to hold an audience's attention. One of the biggest differences to this short versus my microfilms is that I am giving myself a budget. A very small one mind you: $250CAD. This money will be going towards a hotel room for one night, this is where the bulk of the filming will be done.

So what's the story?

The story, as I said before, is extremely simple. A boy agrees to drive a girl (they are friends, but not close) to a party she wants to go to. On the way she spontaneously decides that she doesn't want to go anymore. After some talking they decide to just drive. Drive to wherever they end up. They end up finding a hotel room and staying the night, bonding and growing closer. Even if the idea is basic and probably cliche, I don't want it to be about the romance between them, because truly there won't be. There will be no kissing or cuddling. I want to show the development of a friendship via a spontaneous adventure.

What gear am I using (keep in mind I am a 17 year old high school student):

My gear is, like the film, minimalistic but should get the job done. My main camera will be my Canon M50 with either it's kit 15-45 or my Neewer 35mm f1.7. This camera will be mounted on my Ronin SC with a Rode Video Micro on top. The audio will most likely not be perfect but considering the shots I envision, it should do just fine. Worst case scenario I have to ADR some voices in, which I am familiar with doing.

Where will it be going?

If and hopefully this ever actually gets made it will be going straight to my YouTube channel, Chance Studios. In a perfect world it will be fully finished by December. This December deadline is extremely important due to the title of the film, 'A December Drive'. A January Drive just doesn't sound as good now does it?
 

indietalk

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Staff Member
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Great introduction post! I like your story but feel it needs a little more. Can you come up with a cool twist or maybe some kind of revelation in the end? Something neither of them expected? Or a conflict?

And don't worry about the title and month coinciding. Born on the Forth of July came out in December. Etc.
 

CamBlamo

Pro Member
indiePRO
IOTM Winner
Seems like you have a great set up to make a film.

My only question would be, are you talking 6 days total from script to editing post? Or 6 days to shoot?

6 days is a lot for a short film, especially if very little money is involved.

Since you said you are getting a room for only a day, I am assuming that's not what you mean.

If you mean 6 days total for filming, I think you could probably reduce that time if you organize it a little more. The premise is so simple, you could probably knock out a film like this in 2 full 8 hour days. One for driving and one for the hotel.
 
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Seems like you have a great set up to make a film.

My only question would be, are you talking 6 days total from script to editing post? Or 6 days to shoot?

6 days is a lot for a short film, especially if very little money is involved.

Since you said you are getting a room for only a day, I am assuming that's not what you mean.

If you mean 6 days total for filming, I think you could probably reduce that time if you organize it a little more. The premise is so simple, you could probably knock out a film like this in 2 full 8 hour days. One for driving and one for the hotel.
Oh wow my grammar must have fallen off last night. What I mean by that is we will start filming in 6 (now 5) days. Due to our schedules with school, work and sports we will be trying to get majority of the filming, at least the hotel scenes, done in one full day. There are some shots that we can film virtually whenever and that feature only one actor so scheduling will be easier. I will keep you all updated!
 

CamBlamo

Pro Member
indiePRO
IOTM Winner
Oh wow my grammar must have fallen off last night. What I mean by that is we will start filming in 6 (now 5) days. Due to our schedules with school, work and sports we will be trying to get majority of the filming, at least the hotel scenes, done in one full day. There are some shots that we can film virtually whenever and that feature only one actor so scheduling will be easier. I will keep you all updated!

Cool! Look forward to it.
 
.....camera ....with a Rode Video Micro on top. The audio will most likely not be perfect but considering the shots I envision, it should do just fine. Worst case scenario I have to ADR some voices in, which I am familiar with doing.

Being one of the resident audio folks here, I have to say that a camera mounted mic is a horrible option. This is one of the biggest mistakes that low/no/mini/micro budget filmmakers commit. I am aware that you may have a little experience with ADR, but, as an audio post person who does a lot of DX editing, I've found that ADR is much less real/emotional than production dialog. Also, ADRed DX requires a lot of Foley work, otherwise the DX is disconnected from the "real" world.

You can get a 6' paint-pole at Home Depot (do they have those in Canada?) for $10 to $20. (There are a number of DIY videos on YouTube explaining how to make one.) If you have a mono-pod that will work also. Even a PA holding it will be better than camera mounted sound. When they are in the car you can hide it in the console, near the gear shift, on the dash, etc.; wherever it is out of sight. When the car is stationary you can boom through an open window or door. Yes, you will have to get an audio extension cable. Hosa makes a 25' 3.5mm/1/8" extension for $9.

Isn't a total of $20 - $30 and the use of a PA worth it for better production sound?
 
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