Tag Archives: documentary

Blog Post – Exciting New Projects

Hi all, lots going on!

Main focus is finishing up on filming my documentary ‘Behind The Illusion’ focusing on Mind-Reader Chris Rawlins. We have filmed a lot of footage already, all that’s left is filming one of Chris’ performance. This is taking place on Thursday at York St John and everybody is welcome to come along. Find all the details here on the facebook event.

We’re starting editing the project on Monday, can’t wait to see the footage. We have a lot of options, but I definitely know the frameworks that I want, and it should be a very entertaining doc. It will be up on here and my youtube once the new year rolls around. We have somebody composing some music specifically for the project, and they will likely be working on that over Christmas.

The next thing I’m most excited about is a Short Film Competition that I found on twitter. Ironically I found it in a lecture all about using twitter and other forms of New Media to seek out opportunities. But yeah, all the details are here, and it’s very exciting. 3 minute short film on the theme of The Boss, with some amazing prizes! I’ve contacted a group of people from my course to form a crew that I would really like to lead. I’m going to direct the project. Should be good fun, and we have quite a decent chunk of time to make something good, the deadline is the end of March. It was ironic because I had just been saying that I want to start up an independent project, and also talking to some of my friends about working on something together. I’m struggling to think of a concept for it, but hopefully as a team we can come up with a good one.

I’m spending the next week working as a runner on a third year project called Isn’t It Romantic? which is a romantic comedy all about an actress who stars in romantic comedies. I really like the idea, and it came up at a time where I was hoping to work on something much more light-hearted, especially after my first short film The House. I enjoy being a runner, getting to work on a set without any real responsibilities or worries is nice, and you can learn a lot if you try. Hopefully going to learn a lot about lighting from the Director of Photography, as that is my weakest area that I find really intimidating. I’m just going to be annoying and ask loads of questions, unless they seem really mean.

Writing this blog is really making me realise how much I have going on at the moment. Oh well, I can take it.

I need to write a script over Christmas for our screen-writing module. There’s 3 of us writing scripts based on somebody else’s treatment. The film idea comes from Woody Allen’s short story, The Kugelmass Episode, which is all about a middle-aged man seeking an affair to spice up his life who encounters a magician who can send him into novels, where he has an affair with the character Emma out of Madame Bovary. It’s pretty wacky. We basically need to take the general idea as inspiration and write whatever we think would be best. I’m keeping a similar character and the idea of an iconic character appearing appeals to me, but I’m throwing in a sort of Disney villain twist. Our tutor told us not to worry about copywright or budgeting for the project, so I’m just going to go crazy with it. I don’t know if these projects are going to get made or not, like the last scripts were, but I’m not going to worry about that.

Finally, we got given a film challenge by the director of The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas, Mark Herman. He always takes interest in the graduates work, but I don’t know if this has ever happened before. We basically have a series of things that must be included in our film. The scariest thing about this project is that it is a very intensive schedule. VERY intensive. I think it is 3 days shooting and 2 days editing. Mental!

We’re in the same crews as we were for The House, but we can’t have the same roles. We are going to arrange the roles on monday as well as pitch our ideas for the concept, which need to be based on this weeks news and have the theme of injustice. I really can’t find anything! I imagine there might be some clashes over people wanting the same roles, as always, but as always it will sort itself out. I’m pushing myself as producer for it as I believe I am extremely organised. But we’ll see how it plays out.

Side note, I went to see My Week With Marilyn this week and thought it was amazing. My friend hated it and said nothing happened, but I thought it was beautifully shot and really interesting. And it had Hermione in it! Maybe a film just for film buffs? If anyone has seen it let me know what you think.

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Back on the blog.

Hello, unfortunately not had chance to update this blog in quite a while. I have once again been crazy busy.

Anyways, what I’m up to at this point is updating my CV. We had a guest speaker today and I do feel really motivated, and also slightly terrified. I did enjoy the realistic yet optimistic attitude though. I completely believe you can get somewhere in this industry if you put in the work, same as anything really. But yes, re-drafting my CV and hopefully get it sent out so I can try and get some work experience in 2012.

Update on my projects..

– My first film The House wrapped last week! We are currently finishing off editing, just the music to sort out now. So sad that there’s so much music I would like to use, but darn copywright laws. Ah well, there’s actually good stuff on royalty-free websites, you just have to drift through the hilariously bad stuff to get to it. All going well I will be able to have it up online by the end of the week, would love to get feedback on it.

The shoot went pretty well, although unfortunately our producer didn’t manage to secure locations that we needed so we needed to make some last minute changes to the script/structure. Ah well, it still looks good. Although I do think it was obvious that the script that was written was meant to be much longer. Our uni is making us limit the film to 7 minutes, although this film could probably do with about 10 to 12. But there’s nothing we can do about that, just go tot make it the best it can be.

Working with actors… I was really quite nervous as it was my first time working with actual actors and they were both so great, they made it so easy. They were also impressive actors and responsive to my directions, which is great. It was interesting to see how the guy who plays our main character Ben, Nathan Unthank, dealt with his first screen performance. It’s so different from the stage, where most of his work has been so far, so much more repetitive than anyone ever expects. But he dealt with it fantastically.

– My next project, the documentary about illusionist Chris Rawlins, got comissioned and begins filming the week after next! It has a name now… Behind The Illusion. Just sorting out filming dates and still coming up with ideas for that, very excited. I’m directing again, I must have some sort of addiction to stress and lack of sleep. I absolutely loved directed The House, but I can’t lie and say it wasn’t stressful. This should be much more relaxed. I’m very excited for the interviews, as I’m genuinely interested in finding out how somebody learns the art of mentalism (the real word for it.) I’m also excited about some creative ideas we have brewing for it, and I have a team who seems committed to making it look really great while I concentrate on the content. I wonder if anyone else has taken on directing the documentary AND the film… Hmmm…

Apart from that, we have lots of assignments in soon. An essay on the film adaptation of Dicken’ Great Expectations as well as creating an online collection of documents and stuff about ‘The House.’ Also I have an idea for a film brewing, so I’m going to write a treatment and send it to my screenwriting tutor and see what he thinks. Then I make an attempt at my first solo script, eek.

Sorry this post is really text heavy, I’m just so tired and really wanted to get this out there! I won’t go this long again, I swear. Stay tuned for ‘The House.’ 🙂

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What do I do?

So I’m still settling into my blog 🙂

I’m just setting out the main structure of my blog, as I’m planning on keeping this up! I really don’t want this to be something I start and then don’t finish.

So you have the main blog here, then you have a little section about me where you can get in touch with me and find out a bit more. Then I have my projects, which is sort of my online CV. It will have my past projects up in full as well as details of what I did on them, and tell you what projects I’m currently working on, which I’ll be talking about in much more detail here. So yeah, take a look at what I did last year. There’s not too much that I’m putting up at this point. I will probably make some posts featuring some of the other projects where I can talk about where it went completely wrong! But the two that are on there are two that I’m proud of. One because it was the first project I completed and liked, and the second because I am just genuinely proud of what we achieved.

As for upcoming projects, that is what I am very excited about! My main focus is the short film that I am directing called The House. We shoot in one months time, which in film terms is nothing! I am feeling very prepared in terms of how I imagine the complete picture of the film, I’ve completed the shot lists and prepared some storyboards, but that doesn’t mean we’re in any place to shoot yet. It has been very difficult as we received our groups for this project at the end of last year, and have had to try and work on this project throughout the summer, with everybody spread out throughout the country… It doesn’t work that well. But we’ve done what we can, and from the sounds of it more than what a lot of other groups have done. But when I return to university tomorrow, we’re going to have to crack on! We need to find actors and make sure the locations we are thinking of are suitable. Then we have the scheduling, which isn’t the most fun but it isn’t until that’s done that I feel like it is really happening. Finding actors is also scary, as up to this point we have acted in each others projects. But this year is going to be a lot more professional (I hope.) I sort of see last year as a tutorial on the basics of everything.

Other thing’s I’m working on:

  • We have to put forwards ideas for a new documentary. My main idea involves following the life of young illusionist Chris Rawlins. I filmed some work for him during the summer, when he played the York Opera House, and he has agreed to be in the doc if it gets green lit. If they like my idea I’ll have to pitch in front of the whole year.
  • I was approached on twitter recently by the Hamilton Panthers football club to help make a short film to represent them. I haven’t heard from them in a couple of days, but it pays to be patient. I find this project very exciting as they approached me to do it. It really does show how social networking and branding actually does work, and is definitely one of the driving forces for me to create this blog. I love the idea of just instead of just a boring CV list, I can send them here and hopefully in time this will look more and more professional and involving. I like how people can get straight to the information they need, but read more if they are interested. And hopefully they will see by my commitment to this just how determined I am in everything I do.
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