Saturday, January 16, 2010

Day 3, the Long and Winding Road

Started the day with the keys locked in the running van. Waited 45 mins for AAA to unlock the van and made everyone wait an hour because inside were the keys to the green room and the shop. Ouch. Director's fired.

Also started about 1/2 a day behind shooting the montage and realized pretty quickly that we weren't going to be able to get full-length gown shots, so we went for attitude. Another thing I learned: Getting a wide shot takes a lot of time because you have to set up lights to light each area in the shot. No shadows, no dark corners. So you limit your wide shots. In the future, I will plan for this. Need to have enough time to make sure to get those wide ones.

Got aggressive today. We were behind. Camera and lighting are perfectionists, which is great, but we had to move. Tried to keep the train going and decided to move into Coach mode. 10 seasons of coaching 18 little girls in soccer pays off.

This was the last day of our full cast/crew set-ups and it was a full house. After the montage, we went right into the hallucination scene. Called Matt Rhodes, our post-production/special effects master, and got some guidance on framing and what should and shouldn't be done in post. Bought some Saran Wrap to draw morphing placement on the screen. This is guerilla special effects work, that's for sure. No green screen today. The masks are stunning. Can't wait to see them in the film. Holy moley.

Brian Cary, our 2nd on-set photographer, showed up again and stayed clear of production while capturing more than 700 shots. Glad for that. Lunch was spaghetti and meatballs with salad. Awesome. Not that I ever had any time to eat much... but glad the cast and crew could get some nutrition.

Tried to work with the actors to encourage the right touch, the warm moment. Teresa Navarro, our cousin Mimi, stepped up to give a great non-speaking performance and somehow just knew where to be in the camera. It's hard to know when the actors are young and inexperienced but she performed flawlessly. Kudos to her. In fact, the entire cast was phenomenal today and just impressive. Juliet Heller was perfect and we created a couple of special shots just for her... the "muppet shots" will be priceless. She has created a real character out of only bones, and I let her know that I would absolutely LOVE to work with her again. In fact, I'd be happy to work with all the cast again. Just spectacular.

I kept reminding myself that we were creating a comedy, not a farce, and to draw out the emotions and sentimentality. The comedic spots were easy enough to create and people were having so much fun with them I had to try and soften them up. Hopefully it's a good sign when everyone's laughing while you're shooting it.

We didn't get as much done today as we had scheduled either. During the break Lisa and I sat down to cut scenes. Four scenes were cut right away. And then the sun came out. We did our exit walk-out scene and I pulled Allison, the bridal shop owner, onto the set. We had a really nice conversation over and over (6 takes, I think), and I got my Hitchcock moment.

But the day was long. I wanted to do more but couldn't do it to the crew. We ended at 12:15 pm. Everyone was fried. No telling what Day 4 was going to bring, but I knew we had to be efficient.

Got home in time to pick up O from school. Hadn't seen my daughter in days. Took her shopping and then back to volleyball practice. Went home. Passed out. Slept until 10:30 pm. No food. Day 3 was on the shelf.

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