November... The penultimate film... I'm tired and just want to go to sleep... But! There are prizes to be won!

Struggling is a bit of an understatement, so close to the end but still needing two film's. Each one was becoming harder and harder and the thought of stopping now made me feel a little sick. Then I remembered something me and a bunch of friends did a few years ago...

They have these film competitions where you Write, Shoot, Edit and Deliver a short film within 48hrs. It sounds crazy (especially if you have ever made a film) but it can be a lot of fun. Check out this link to one we made in 2012. I needed to find one that was taking place in November. I think I used up my lifetimes supply of luck during this year, a film would have been made regardless but there was in fact a 48hr film competition taking place in November. The Smoke and Mirrors 48hr film Competition this link will tell you all about it but you get a theme sent though at 7'oclock on a friday night you then make a film based around that theme and hand it in at 7 o'clock that sunday night. I was able to gather a group of friends together (some of who were involved the last one) some not. It was useful having a few veterans around as its a hard thing to get your head around!

The guys were Tim Watts, Kev Rodd, Fraser Lawson and Ed Tansey

So we spent the best part of the Friday night discussing what we might like to make. We decided not to plan to much in advance so we all would all be starting from a similar place. This was a long, long night of discussion which can get quite heated as ther's a lot of pressure to come up with an idea and leave enough time to flesh it out! However working without a direct plan is something I'm used to and in fact enjoy so I wasn't to worried when we had to call it a night.

I had already put a call out to Bert (yes the very same Bert) a few days before to see if he would be interested in coming along and doing what ever it was we came up with. He actually recruited one of his friends as well and interesting choice as he said this guy looked a lot like him! This information kind of shaped the film. Knowing you have two actors who look alike means you can start thinking of an idea with that in mind. At such short notice the guys were free to come and help out.

Bert by now I'm sure you know... so let me introduce you to Andy Boon. There is no link for Andy as he isn't a full time or even a part time actor. This however is something that I hope will change very soon, because when you see him in the film I dare you to think otherwise! Andy is an enthusiast and I am so happy that Bert brought him to my attention. Andy arrived on the Saturday morning a little overwhelmed as this was a 48hr film and you just have to go, all day to get it done. There was very little time to explain so we just got started. There is a very intricate relationship between director and Actor, each one needs to understand the other. It takes time and practice for each to get it right. There are a lot of things you need to do as an actor that are unnatural but necessary to work on camera. Andy took to it in about a second and we started shooting and didn't stop until night time.  

We were going to tell the story of two brothers, one who was house bound (suffering from some type of post traumatic stress) and the other who is trying to get his brother out of the house.. What ever it takes. We devised the idea so that there wasn't much dialog and what dialog there was didn't need to be exact. The sound fx would cover the majority of the film and the rest would be filled in with music. We shot on two cameras just for coverage as you never know when you might need a shot to get you out of a bad situation (we were making it up as we went along after all). Sorry to Fraser as I didn't really end up using much of his footage but it was necessary to have the back up.

Then we got some sleep!!....

Next morning bright and early me and Tim were on to the editing, Gemma made us an amazing breakfast and then we got started. Once again there is nothing like a deadline, I can work fast but it's the final stages that slow it all down. Tim was sorting out the audio, finding music and creating some fake rain for the fins scene whilst I put the video elements together. As we got closer to the deadline we started to cut corners a little more and rush things a little thinking it will be fine for this competition but we can always change stuff later. 

Allowing for litterally just enough time to encode the film and upload it for submission we did finish. We may have been a little over but every clock is different right!! Then we just hoped that it would play ok as not much of a final check was done and we knew we were sending over a rough piece of work... But there was something about it... In away that is so often the case, it's only once you see it finished do you realise that it actually worked! We had a nice little 5min film on our hands and all this work I had been putting in to my 12 films in a year came into perspective... We had made a competed film from start to finish in 2 day's! Can all films work like that!

This was the first film of the twelve that was finished (because it had to be) and It was nice to have one done. One out of eleven was a start...


Oh yeah... Remember this was a competition!




We won!!! 

We won Cameras!!! I have not had a chance to use them yet, they are interesting things and I need to learn how to use them. So very soon they will be out shooting a music video and i'll see how they go.

Here are some more stills from the film.