misc Post a Production Pic

onebaldman

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Hey all, I thought it would be cool to make a thread where we post behind the scenes pics of our productions, along with a little story behind it?

It could be an older production, or one you are currently in. The idea is to get a glimpse of everyone in their element or fulfilling their passion.

Doesn't have to be anything crazy, just something that brings back a positive or fun memory for you.

I will start with mine.

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On the set of "Kushtaka (2019)" in Kodiak, AK.

The campfire was a major set piece, but it also gave us a ton of use. From brewing campfire coffee, heating up our food and our bodies, we had a ton of fun living a frontier lifestyle out in the wilderness.

This location was awesome, it even had a running stream right next to the camping area that we used in the film for the panning sequences.

The day before, there was a major earthquake in Anchorage. We had to evacuate to high ground due to a Tsunami warning, which luckily the wave never showed. We were told this was because it was a side slip quake, and not a drop or dipping quake. It was still intense, and I was going to reschedule for a later date... But everyone was excited to be there the next day anyway. I think it got our minds off of what could have been a major disaster.
 
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mlesemann

Staff Member
Moderator
Detours Peter and car.jpg

This is one of my favorite behind-the-scenes photos from my 2nd feature, DETOURS. The actor chasing the car, Peter Graham, played the "lemonade stand guy," who has big dreams for his tiny stand. He's chasing the car (driven by our leading lady Tara Westwood ) - you'll have to watch the movie to find out why (links at the end). The scene was inspired by something that really happened to me at Citi Field at a Mets game :)

This is my mom's car, which she generously lent to us. The "real" plates are from NJ, but our production designer is a whiz at making fake plates on a printer - of course we never let the car drive unattended that way.

This is the only scene we had to re-shoot (this is the 2nd time through), and one of the cops who we hired (off-duty) for a highway scene generously lent us his yard and driveway.

Our main camera is shooting Tara on the inside and Peter yelling in her window. That's an Arri Alexa classic, and we were shooting Zeiss standard speed prime lenses (full disclosure: I checked notes from the DP to confirm my recollection). We also shot some material out of the moving car with a Go Pro.

The full movie is available on Amazon Prime in the US (the link is here: http://tinyurl.com/DetoursNew ), and numerous other countries.
It's also available worldwide on Vimeo on Demand here: Vimeo on Demand
 
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mlesemann

Staff Member
Moderator
I'll take that challenge @onebaldman :)

This photo, also behind the scenes on my 2nd feature, DETOURS , is from what we call the "scattering ashes" scene near the end of the movie.

The main characters scatter the ashes of her mom/his wife in Tampa Bay, Florida. The terrific people at Eckerd College's Search and Rescue Team provided the boats (my niece was a senior member of the group at the time); one of their people is at the helm. Our DP, Chris Eadicicco, is the guy on the right in the light blue t-shirt, and our boom guy is on the roof.

This was when we were heading out into the bay before we shot. For about half the shots, we had the actors (the man & woman in the foreground) and director in one boat and the crew in the other, so the viewer could get a wide view. This was very challenging for both the boat crew and the camera crew, because the water was choppy and the boats did not (of course) move in synch. It came out great, though.Tampa Bay boats.jpg
 
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onebaldman

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I'll take that challenge @onebaldman :)

This photo, also behind the scenes on my 2nd feature, DETOURS , is from what we call the "scattering ashes" scene near the end of the movie.

The main characters scatter the ashes of her mom/his wife in Tampa Bay, Florida. The terrific people at Eckerd College's Search and Rescue Team provided the boats (my niece was a senior member of the group at the time); one of their people is at the helm. Our DP, Chris Eadicicco, is the guy on the right in the light blue t-shirt, and our boom guy is on the roof.

This was when we were heading out into the bay before we shot. For about half the shots, we had the actors (the man & woman in the foreground) and director in one boat and the crew in the other, so the viewer could get a wide view. This was very challenging for both the boat crew and the camera crew, because the water was choppy and the boats did not (of course) move in synch. It came out great, though.View attachment 1311
Any motion sickness during this!? Thank you for posting.
 
I'll take that challenge @onebaldman :)

This photo, also behind the scenes on my 2nd feature, DETOURS , is from what we call the "scattering ashes" scene near the end of the movie.

The main characters scatter the ashes of her mom/his wife in Tampa Bay, Florida. The terrific people at Eckerd College's Search and Rescue Team provided the boats (my niece was a senior member of the group at the time); one of their people is at the helm. Our DP, Chris Eadicicco, is the guy on the right in the light blue t-shirt, and our boom guy is on the roof.

This was when we were heading out into the bay before we shot. For about half the shots, we had the actors (the man & woman in the foreground) and director in one boat and the crew in the other, so the viewer could get a wide view. This was very challenging for both the boat crew and the camera crew, because the water was choppy and the boats did not (of course) move in synch. It came out great, though.View attachment 1311
Makes me appreciate those bay scenes in the show Dexter a whole lot more. Water shots are always full of surprising challenges!
 

onebaldman

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More Pics! More Pics! More Pics!!!!!!!!! If you got em, I'd love to see them.

images.jpg

I'm going to try and find a better resolution to replace this pic.

This was a cold day in Michigan. One of the coldest I've felt in a while. It was quite an adventure, and one of the first times I've truly experienced slight production hell.

Finding the location wasn't too hard. It was slightly north of Lake Winnebago. About two hours away from everyone in the crew. The park was generous enough to let us use their property for the scene. I promised it was only for the day, and the film wasn't being made by a for profit production studio; only by me (a hobbyist). They agreed to let us shoot there, since in the winter there isn't as much foot traffic. My goal was to be done by 6pm so everyone could get home safely.

I got there early, around 1:45pm, along with my two PA's, Marques and Stefo. We ran into a few snags setting up the prop airlock, but eventually we were able to make it look realistic from a distance. Everyone started showing up. The actors were applying makeup and costume in the park bathroom, while Alicia got out a portable propane heater and coffee pot. Alicia was running all of those things, while I worked with the DP to plan out the shots.

The DP realized they had forgot their batteries for the camera and lights. They decided to run to the nearest Home Depot and buy a car powered generator for the camera. Crisis averted, because the DP was awesome, and knew how to handle his gear. If he hadn't been there, well...

We were good to go! We started filming the scenes. The airlock scene went perfectly and looked amazing. Then we needed the closeups. This is when the weather started working against us.

We were spraying defog fluid on the inside of the helmet so we could see the actress in the closeups, but I wasn't prepared for it to start freezing solid to the plastic. We had to dethaw the helmet in between takes each time... It was a huge pain.

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To add to all of this, my snacks I bought for the cast/crew froze solid too. So luckily, this shoot only went on for about 4 hours total. But, it gave us some of the most praised shots of the film.

In the end, this was the main nightmare scenario, and thanks to an awesome cast and crew, we overcame and conquered it.
 

mlesemann

Staff Member
Moderator
I've often mentioned that my first feature, Surviving Family , deals with alcoholism and mental illness. It specifically includes a suicide by hanging from a tree outside the family home, which presented substantial challenges.

Wearing my producer's hat (rather than my screenwriter's hat), I initially lobbied for using a dummy rather than the actual actress. Our director felt strongly that (a) it would never look convincing and (b) it could be done safely.

Part of that conviction was that SHE would be the person to test the harness that was rented from a very reputable business. Laura is substantially bigger than the actress in question, so if it was safe for her, it would be safe for the other woman.

Needless to say, I was STILL worried. But everything was executed with great care and spotters. These are shots of Laura and the grip who was the primary "go to" person on this scene.

SF Laura hang.jpg
SF Laura hang3.jpgSF Laura hang.jpg
 
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onebaldman

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My first feature. Shot on Super8 with a home made dolly. That's me pushing the dolly.
My first 16mm short with a rented dolly. That's a real dolly grip.
I can't even imagine attempting a feature length on Super 8. At the time, since that was the "entry level" (or so I think) was it cheaper to develop overall than the 16mm? I know 16mm is closer to cinematic look wise, but which did you like more?
 

onebaldman

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I've often mentioned that my first feature, Surviving Family , deals with alcoholism and mental illness. It specifically includes a suicide by hanging from a tree outside the family home, which presented substantial challenges.
Did they cover up the harness with clothes? Or did the shot block out the upper portion? How did you hide the cable for that shot?
 
RE: "The Vernonia Incident" shot in 16mm.
How was it working with the 16mm for this?
This project was shot way back in 1989. I used an old TV News camera called an Auricon, which recorded sound directly onto the film as it was being shot. There was a magnetic sound stripe on the side of the film. After the Ektachrome film was processed, it was transferred to 1-inch video tape for editing purposes. There was no need to sync the audio to the picture, since it was already on the film. Early newscasts and documentaries were shot in this fashion. Cameras such as the Auricon are still available, BUT mag stripe (sound) film is no longer manufactured.... Today if you shoot on film, you would need to record the sound on a separate recorder, and you would probably want to shoot in "super-16", which produces a slightly larger negaive. Your camera of choice would probably be an Arri or an Eclair.
 
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