Hey friends, it is my pleasure to share this fun collaboration with some local silly peeps and their latest episode for a web series parody, PARANORMAL WORLD.
Some production notes from your humble director:
Jeremy Cordy wrote it. He was a gracious screenwriter and even let me do a pass on the script to tweak dialogue and throw in a couple of pseudojokes.
The cast was already on board, so I got to just walk in and direct the script. It was a fun day working with some actual actors who mean to act.
We shot it the Saturday before Thanksgiving at the Glendale Library and a friend’s house down the road from there. Our day started at 3 PM and went until 1 AM and was very rushed, with only a couple takes per shot. We had to push a couple of pick up shots (Alexa running to the car/driving off) to another day because it was actually raining all night. In California, I know, we couldn’t believe it either.
Our production crew was two people, Leslie Andrew Ridings (Producer and Cinematographer on Into The Cold), on camera, and myself doing sound. No joke. The cast pitched in at times and did slates for us, but it was a ridiculous 2-man show that I don’t recommend.
We shot it using our contest-winning 5D.
Our production designer, Cassandra, made some cool props and is responsible for the general “serial killer” house we were in with newspapers, stuffed deer head, etc. The EPK was rigged up from a battery hand fan and a mini tripod (?). Fun stuff! She also did the scanners from Episode 1 that we destroyed (and make a subsequent return here when Becky eats it).
The most takes we needed for a shot was the prophecy scene: 7 takes. I wanted to do it all in one shot (the equipment joke, the fight, the prophecy, leading to the gunshot). Again, with a crew of 2, our issue was not having a dedicated focus puller. Moving camera positions in, out, in, out for the scene meant 6 or 7 different focus spots to hit, and we needed a lot of practice. Don’t make movies without a focus puller. Seriously. Leslie nailed it on the last one, though!
My wife Juliette cut it in Avid (MC 5.0.4), and let me get hands on for my first real Avid use since my Lynda.com lessons. I loved it, and feel confident I could do any project in there now. We ran into some export issues that set us back a day, though, and I would recommened we invest the $ to get the latest MC (6.5) which I can get a big discount on…
I did the sound edit and mix in the Avid. Very limited, but did the job for a simple show like this. I also did color in the Avid, not too shabby.
I did some “VFX” (if you can call them that), in Final Cut, since I wasn’t quite ready to tackle how that would work in Avid. Namely – painting out an annoying cable that distracted the world in one shot, and the prophecy strobe light sequence.
Jeremy’s wife’s bro had composed a couple of great scary drones for us, so we used those for some music, and the rest was pulled from the free Apple Loops package that comes with FCP. Sound effects were also Apple Loops, with a big assist from our account with freesound.org.
In all, post-production to delivery took about 6 days, split up over the month of December.
Thanks for watching!