Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Commercial Ventures

We're shooting commercials this week at my day job.

I don't know how they finnish major motion pictures. We're shooting two 30-second spots.

I say "we." Actually a small army will arrive tomorrow night to do the actual shooting. Maybe not an army. It's more like a regiment. If we did any dialog that would take a brigade because then we'd need sound guys, too.

I'm just doing the coordinating, and boy are my arms tired.

I've been scouting locations with the director, the line producer and the producer. There's a lot of walking involved in location scouting.

It's the pointing that starts getting the arms tired. How about this hallway? No, OK let's go a couple of hallways over. Hmm, OK, let's look at the sixth floor the light is better up there.

My arms continue to get tired because I move them a lot when I rant.

That occurrs when I'm on the phone with people asking if I can use a corner of their area for a shot. It's really hard to stage Apocalypse Now in the midst of a functioning business. It's roughly like it would have been if the producers of Apocalypse Now had stuck with their original plan to film in Viet Nam during the war.

Then there are the explanations. I have to go through those with supervisors when they ask: "How long are you going to be in my area?"

"About two hours."

"Two hours! How much film are you shooting?"

"Well it won't be but a few seconds. But we have to have time set up lights. And there's going to be some track."


"For the dolly shot."

"Why do you need a dolly shot?"

"Because it will be really cool."

"OK, you want a corner of the room for two hours and you're going to lay track."

"Uh, yeah, and uh, you might want to let the patrons know that there's going to be a lot of white light in the area during that time."


"We're going to park a truck with a spotlight on it outside the window and shine it in."


"The lighting guy thought it would look really cool."

"Anything else."

"I'm going to need to borrow your staff for a while. We've found actors can't really fake the expertise. Except we are going to use an actor for what we call the `hero' shot. Can we get one of your jersey's for him in a medium?"

You may or may not hear from me the next few days, depending on how bad my headaches get.


Wayne Allen Sallee said...

scouting for locations seems to be the easiest part of what you are having to deal with. i can see you first film: when harry met whattaburger!

Kate S said...

LOL - Poor Sidney. I hope your arms and head feel better. :)

By the way - congrats on the WoW positive feedback.

Charles Gramlich said...

ahh, the glory of filmaking. Don't you feel the lure and allure of Hollywood?

Stewart Sternberg said...

Did you suggest they film you in the nude? They might have gone for body doubles in that situation. Hell, you could have done a sex scene and then not even gotten filmed.

Sidney said...

Thanks to everyone for dropping by as always.

Stewart, glad you're feeling better! I actually have a no-nudity clause. It's just easier on everyone that way.

Charles, sometimes I think filming a Hollywood movie would be easier. At least maybe we'd get to blow some cars up or something.

Wayne, I almost got Whataburger for lunch but opted for some chicken ranch think at Micky D's instead.

Thanks Kate, my arms are better tonight. My head hurts from banging it against the wall. I filled and lost the talent for the first scene we'll shot in the a.m. three times today.

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