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    Between Friends - Red Collar Studios - Comedy
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    Senior Member jls4's Avatar
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    Studio: Red Collar Studios.
    Genre: Comedy
    Type: Feature Approx 90 minutes
    Status: In Production

    Synopsis: Colin is looking for love in all the wrong places until Reagan enters his life and knocks him off his feet. But how does he pull a woman who makes 4 times his salary while he's systematically loosing his physical therapy business? Only time and a few laughs will tell.


    Camera Equipment: Canon 5D, Canon 7D, RED ONE
    Lighting Equipment: 6 - 1Ks, 3 - 650s, 3- 300s, 1 - 150, 2 - Cool Lights 4 Bank
    Audio Equipment: Sennheiser 416, Sound Devices 702T
    Grip Equipment: 4+ White Reflectors, 1 - (Created) Aluminim Shiny Reflector, 4 - Flags Multi Sizes, 5 - C-stands
    Specialized Equipment: Glidecam Jib Arm / Crane, KameraSlide Pro

    --------------------------------------------
    Index:
    Intro and Background - pg.1#1
    Still Set 1 - pg.1#2
    Challenges - pg.1#3

    --------------------------------------------
    Complete Cast
    Shaun Mixon (Colin)
    Candys Tripplett (Reagan)
    Miko DeFoor (Mathew)
    Jael Roberson (Kenny)
    Ivan Mbakop (Nufsho [Brother's Wusai])
    Bernard Johnson (Tingahn [Brother's Wusai])
    Chrissy Chambers (Jia [Brother's Wusai])
    Martin Kelley (Sharomi)
    Deborah Childs (Ms. Archibald)
    Brent Brooks (Raferty)
    Emily Bowman (Linda)
    Kevin Valle (Angelo)
    Kelly Frances Hager (Teresa)

    --------------------------------------------
    Crew
    jls4 (Producer / Director / Writer)
    Alicia Gholar (Publicity / Assoc Producer)
    Vonetta Jackson (Assoc Producer)
    Robert Ferrell (Audio)
    Richard Castro (Assoc Producer)
    Paige Howard (Intern)

    Post Production
    Brad Semenoff (Sound Mix / Post Sound)
    Jay Williams (Editor)
    Canvas Suite Studios (Andrew Staten, Soundtrack)


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    #2
    Senior Member jls4's Avatar
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    Senior Member jls4's Avatar
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    Challenges:

    There are always major challenges with any project. In this one we definitely have our hands full. Locations provide problems in two ways: clean audio and availability. Although many places are indie friendly since Atlanta has yet to arrive as a major movie hub, many areas have hard time limits or may not give the production a good boost in quality. What I’ve learned is that if something is not helping a project, it’s hurting it.

    I knew going into BF that we would do a lot of Green Screen and Virtual Backlot. Basically the concept behind Virtual Backlot is to simply “film” (videotape) the background where an actor is located. Shot by shot each background “Plate” should be recorded, generally 30 to 90 seconds of motion. It helps to have a lot of motion in the background. You also need at least one person standing in front of the camera for at least 1 frame, preferably 10 seconds to later set your lighting, wind, etc for your green screen shoot. You print images of the “on location” frame and use that plus behind the scenes shots of your setup. You take those and recreate the look on the actor for your GS shoot. At this point get your actors totally amped up in the way they were on set and simply shoot. You can add more believability by having a grip off set blow air to simulate wind (think big hand fan) or a small 75 watt light to simulate a light source passing.

    Take your images into AE use Keylight (the best d&mn GS program ever) and put your people back onto the plate with moving objects. Because the average medium/close shot is actually lit slightly differently from the background and the point is to make the actor stand out. These type of shots are relatively easy. During “Coming Correct” we used GS for all the car sequences and I learned from there that it could be possible to use this system to shoot anywhere.

    Imagine your movie taking place at Times Square. It can happen. Simply use the technique and boom good audio, great location, no problems.

    Other challenges we knew going in included Casting and Crew.

    Casting can be a tricky subject on an indie project. Getting fully dedicated people for low to no cost. We ended up with great actors but not after having to literally wait 5 weeks for one actress to be ready to shoot. Fortunately like most people, I have many people I’ve worked with before so over 40% of the cast were people I’ve worked with before. But with new people come new challenges which as an indie you have to figure out what’s best.

    Another major concept we used in this movie taken straight from the “24 Diary” is that we never shoot on White Walls especially if there are no pictures. We even went as far as to buy “stuff” to fill the rooms with where we were shooting to up our production quality. What I’ve noticed is that the background in a movie is filled with “stuff”. It’s always filled with “Stuff” it’s never empty. Even when it’s empty, it’s not empty (if that makes since). We tried to follow this philosophy in not only locations, but also our shots, changing a shot to put a “head or arm” where a blank place was in the scene. Trying to keep each area as full as possible.

    We knew from the beginning this would be a split shoot with mainly the Canon 7D and the RED ONE. This actually worked perfectly for the script which was written around the budget and resources (which I encourage people to do, though most won’t).

    The project exists in two time periods: the present and the past. The present time would be about 30 minutes of run time for the project and the past would be 60 minutes. The RED ONE would be used for the present and the Canon 7D would be used for the past.

    We started working on the past first to make it easier. The difference between the present and past in the script is about 5 to 6 months. I liked the concept of playing with both cameras and having the past seem more “soft” while the present is sharper. So for our project this separation of cameras actually works best to differentiate the time periods in the project.

    The Canon 7D so far (and the 5DMK2 which we used for a few scenes) have worked pretty good thus far. In fact we’ve had little problem using GS with the camera at all, even with fine hair details. I’ve also checked the footage on my plasma and as many people have already attested the images are great. But I warn everyone to watch the focus, moiré, ISO, and lighting. The 7D doesn’t like to be color corrected in extremes. I’d say shooting over a half a stop off will really hurt you later. Also make sure your image has lots of blue, even if you have to put a 1/8 Blue gel on your lights or set your White balance slightly off. It’s better to have a little extra blue than not to have it. I learned during Coming Correct that it’s easy to end up with a weak blue channel which hurts your over all exposure and adds grain. Yes there are programs like “Neat Video” which works great, but it’s best not to have the grain to begin with.


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    #7
    Senior Member Martay's Avatar
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    Stills look good.

    Anxious to follow the project with interest.

    -M
    Martin Kelley
    blackhats blog http://blackhatsmovie.blogspot.com facebook https://www.facebook.com/pages/blackhats/254404591292515
    Producer, STEP OFF formerly Battle official site On DVD Now from Lionsgate!
    Co-Writer, Immigration Tango On DVD Now from Lionsgate!


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    Senior Member jls4's Avatar
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    Thanks Martin. How do you like the green screen stuff? Did you guys watch the video? Interesting stuff - Virtual Backlot.


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    Senior Member mentatDUKE's Avatar
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    Wow. Another project already? I need to step my game up. Love the grabs. Looking good jls. I'll be following this thread.


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    #10
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    Do your actors find it hard to deliver a convincing performance when they have to always pretend there in an environment they aren't really in? I think the last 3 Star Wars films are good examples of horrendous performances, in part because everything was virtual for them. There's something natural and organic to being in a real setting that is completely absent when you're in front of a green screen.


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