Tuesday, July 28, 2009

ep #16 blog

This was a strange one. Matt (my co-writer) and I always knew that we wanted to revisit the Eliza character and have her show her finished documentary to the triad, and we knew that it would be shown to be a horribly distorted view of their lives. But then we came to this shooting week and basically none of our actors were available. So we thought, well let's do the one where she shows her doc, but instead of scripting something totally new, let's use footage we already have and look back at times when Eliza was supposedly filming them, but we can see the scenes from different angles, etc, and then put in some really disingenuous commentary. Well, that is how the idea started anyway - as is so often the case, taking a constraint (lack of actors) and turning it into a way to be creative. We ended up using the past footage instead for flashbacks, and adding in "what happened next" footage with Eliza & Mark. Since Eliza & Mark are played by me and Matt, we could shoot those anytime. Anyway, we came up with some really good plot twists to reveal and I wasn't sure until I sat down to edit, how I was going to put it all together. We managed to get Amber Rack (Gemma) for 2 hours one sunday so we scripted a bit where she sees the horrible documentary. And there it is. So often, when I feel like I've done something with no resources whatsoever, the audience comes back and says it's one of their favorite episodes. And I think this is one of those.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

National Press!

National site ABCnews.com picked up our story from local affiliate KOMO. Pretty cool.

Monday, July 13, 2009

GAH! Continual audio troubles!

Well, episode #15 is exporting now and will be up on youtube in about an hour. One day late - our first time. :(

We have had to do major re-recording of audio for the last 2 episodes and it's starting to piss me off, frankly. I don't know if the mic is faulty or what. And the headphone jack to the camera IS faulty so we can't even usually monitor sound. So we don't find out that the audio is messed up until after the shoot is over and the actors have gone home. Another thing that doesn't help, is LACK of CREW. If we had someone who could monitor sound and do nothing else, that would help. But as it is, the amazing VINCENT FERRIS operates the boom mic, moves lights, fetches missing props, gives the actors their marks, and does everything else we need, as he is frequently the only help we have. THANK YOU VINCENT. We have had other PAs on the set, even had a script supervisor for a couple of shoots, but, let's face it, attrition is very high in volunteer work. It's been 15 episodes now and 7 months, and people are drifting away. Luckily, the actors are still engaged. Although I worry about Amber. She was sick again this last shoot. I told her today to take it easy. I think she spreads herself rather thin with so many projects. But we are SO LUCKY to have her. :)

Anyway, today I rushed around town to get re-recording from Amber and Winston, who weren't available yesterday, so that is why we are posting a day late for the first time in 7 months. But the end product is good. Moving, funny, yep - it's got it all. I'm really proud of the script. I think the story is coming along nicely.

Don't ask about #16. YIKES!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Episode #14 shoot

Well, we shot from midnight to 6am for this last one, and boy was that exhausting! We were lucky enough to have the use of lovely local restaurant St. Clouds, in Madrona. John Platt, the owner, was very nice in letting us use the space, and I am happy to report that all actors and crew were respectful and we managed to leave the place in just the condition we found it. There were some fun things. We had extras for the scene, which we almost never do, and it was fun to meet new people and introduce them to the show. We shot from the outside of the restaurant, in the middle of the street, and we didn't have a permit. A police car drove by and we thought they were gonna ask us to leave but instead they just asked "what are you filming? where can I watch it?" So that was pretty funny. And we are still getting used to our new equipment acquisition, the camera dolly. Only ended up using it once in this episode but we're learning. I realized as we were shooting just how much dialogue and how little physical action this one has, but I have to say that now that it's all cut together, it plays well, I think. I know viewers have been waiting patiently for the arrogant Jim Sullivan get his comeuppance. Hope you like it!