Thursday, April 20, 2017

Week Ten: The Shoot

The shoot went smoothly for the most part. The major incident which occurred was that our male lead got sick one of the days which cancelled the entire shooting date. Unfortunately communication was a bit of cluster between mixed messaging. I got the message when I was already on the train going into the city (I live rural), so it was too late for me. Once in Melbourne I did miss a couple trains back as I was trying to call people attempting to get information, I finally did get around to everyone, but I suppose lines were all busy on all ends.

This meant that Twilight had to be filmed all in one day instead of allocated two days, but we were working well on set and we managed to film two days worth all in one day.

I wasn’t there for the miniature shoot, but all the shots were gotten. I was the DOP of the pony episode and we got everything we needed to film within the whole day, due to giving ourselves a good amount of time, for the most part we were able to stick ahead of or just on time. Which was good stuff.

Week Nine: The Look

Being a film shot entirely on Green Screen, this puts an instant limitation on camera movement and lighting as it could negatively affect the keying process in post-production.
However, if we had the freedom, I would have tried to match the show’s general style as much as possible.

But due to the amazing work of the design students, the visual style of the backgrounds is spot-on with the visual style seen in the TV show My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic which the script is based upon.
Visually the show changes from brightly lit to dark depending on the mood, however for our film it’s almost always brightly lit due to the nature of the greenscreen. The backgrounds provide any darker tones needed (such as in the forest) and I suppose colour grading could as well in theory.

But camera movements aren’t really possible in the limited space, meaning anything would all be post-production tricks.

Week Eight: Character Breakdown

Unlike other characters in the script, Flyhoof is a totally new character conceived for the story.
While it’s true that Rainbow Dash and Fluttershy don’t act in the script like their canon show counterparts nor do the actors take any real inspiration of the performances of the voice over artists/animators.

Flyhoof is different because she is totally original, so it does give some more flexibility. Her general visual style was my idea, I envisioned a more edgy character. As she is an Original Character (or OC), I was inspired by the infamously edgy OC pony characters created by the community, a common trait of these would be full black coat with red mane, so that’s the look we went for. Of course in my mind the original version still had wigs and a full costume, but the end resulted fitted in fine as it provided a stand-out contrast in comparison to the more bright other characters.

Her performance was largely based on what Logan desired.

Week Seven: Three Different Ways.

Fluttershy’s death scene is in part the climax of the film, it’s set in the forest (all naturally filmed on green screen), but there was debate of different ways this could be filmed (including even outside).

Due to the nature of the stunt where the actor (Jackson) falls over it could be covered in three different ways. We chose to use a static shot of him walking in, then lifting his foot up into frame which shows the beartrap, then he falls out of the frame as he dies.

But another way this could be filmed is to introduce a tilt, so when he gets caught by the bear-trap, the camera could tilt down to reveal the bear-trap to the audience, then his reaction as the camera tilts back up or he simply falls down into frame.

Another way is like the static show, however as he falls out of frame to die, the camera would tilt to follow him, but the reveal would remain the same as him lifting his foot into the frame as a surprise.

However I think the story is better served by the total static, I believe it adds more comedy quirk by having the foot lifted into frame with the trap (as his foot is normally out of frame) and then simply falling out of frame.
It makes a bit more sense with the Greenscreen forest in the background as well, if inclined it would also have extra editing for the background to track the movement of the tilt.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Week Six: Safety

Sets can be dangerous places, so many things may need to be flagged as problematic. When filming a short film child services believed that having a goat near a teenager was a danger because of biting, so then again people these days are on the careful of everything side.

Tripping hazards is the major thing, film sets have cables, boxes, lights, boom mics, props and all sorts of stuff everywhere. It could be very easy to trip if not paying attention.
Masking down cables is a good way to keep things clean and have less slack to loop around one’s foot. Having all equipment in its own obvious corner and not scattered around is another good way to avoid problems.

Having a safety prep talk before, highlighting problems is a good way to hopefully make sure everybody, both cast and crew is on the same page.
Safety officers can also be employed to ensure the upmost safety and check off on stunts, fire and more alarming things which need to be flagged as a problem.

Electrocution is another one, faulty equipment with a high amount of energy can cause many problems, one of my colleges found that a light would zap him. 

Week Five: Budget

Budgeting is a reality of film-making. Using the Screen Producers as a guide, I got the weekly cost for a low-budget web-series to be $10,155 with the costing being $2,031 per day.

Here is the breakdown for a daily cost which I figured.
Producer $750, Director $164, First AD $144, Second AD $122, Runner $107, DoP $157, First AC $107, Clapper $107, Data Wrangler $107, Sound Recordist $144, Editor $122.

Now I am sure these numbers as well below the industry standard, but it’s what I could figure out from the reference.
https://screenproducers.org.au/assets/Uploads/4.6-Pay-Rates-Allowances-Motion-Picture-Production-Certified-Agreement-MPPCA.pdf

Maths and budgeting is not my strong point really.