Proproduction directors blog

Might be counting my chickens here, but thought I would share with you some of the things that are going on in a directors head while they are prepping.

We are hoping to shoot the short film very early Jan. Might have to do it right after new years kind of thing. The film (if we are accepted) is due Feb 8th. So it doesn't give us too much time for post.
I should have most of the editing done in my head before shooting. Our shoot schedule will be two 12 hour days, I am feeling pretty confident that we can tell the story in this time.
We do have some VFX in the movie, but its mostly going to be split screen stuff, maybe a greenscreen shoot of our ghost.

At this point the script is about 11 pages, the film can only be 10 min max. Usually it takes 1 minute per page of a script. But I do have a lot of overlapping action so it might time out. Gonna need to talk with a script supervisor to know for sure.

We will shoot on RED Epic for 4K. Last movie I did finished in 4K, and although its nice to have it was a real pain. As this will be air'ed in HD I wonder if I should even bother. Its such a pain to move such large files around. I just outputted my last film, 40 mins to a tif seq and its over 2.5 TB. Unweildy.

Location is going to be a little tricky to find. It's something I want to get start on finding right away. We need to find a house, single level. Needs to be empty, or have the ability to be emptied. Need a long'ish hallway that leads to a bedroom. A big enough kitchen to play out our scenes, and the layout has to make sense for the script. Not going to be easy to find. I'll keep enough flexibilty in the script to change as needed to the location, but some things are must haves.

Our short turnaround in post might mean that we need to start the music before we have even started shooting. I might time out the script and use that as a template for the composer to lay out some beats.

SFX makeup should be fun, I would like to do something with the ghost that is cool. Will need to make sure that we have time for applying the makeup without throwing off the shooting day, that can always be tricky. gonna need a talent 1st AD to sort that. Worried that our schedule might dictate the level of complexity our SPX MU will be. If it takes 8 hours to apply the makeup, that means that they need to start MU at midnight, to be ready to shoot at 8am. that ain't gonna work.
Best case scenario it takes two hours. we can have our ghost in before call by an hour, and then shoot some non-ghost scenes while waiting.

For our guest stars, they are on phone calls with our lead. There is one call where we hear both sides of the conversation. I would love to record both sides at once, and want to have a phone quality sound on both. Normally they record in a studio and then dumb down the quality so it sounds like phone, but we don't have that luxury. Thinking Skype might work just fine here.

I have one more small telephone voice role to fill too. Need start thinking on who we can ask. Also need to cast the ghost,., hmm.

Thats all I have for right now, I'll try and keep updating as the process goes along. Remind me if I forget.

Ryan - Director