Thursday, May 31, 2012

Your Things From The Pandora Machine


Tom Rowen needs a laptop for picture editing.
 
Dragon Girl: Steve Niles gave me a rewrite of a rewrite of a rewrite (or something like that.) It's great.

Fountain. It's a markup language for screenplays. No, actually it's much more interesting than that. All it is is a standard screenplay format that's easy to type in and that will import into other programs so it "looks" like a screenplay.
One big advantage is that it looks reasonable when you're typing in it. It's not like looking at raw HTML (which is just unreadable).
The other is that it's free, easy-to-use, and works with any word processor (by definition).
Right now the Pandora Machine standard is Celtx. And don't get me wrong, Celtx is cool. But Google Docs might be cooler.
+++++
Here are notes we got on the Dragon Girl script. I'd asked about the level of violence in the movie:

In all honesty, the bottom line is: just make the best possible movie that you can.

Keep in mind that kids movies set in a dystopian world really don't work that well - kids don't quite understand the difference. Not sure family movies work well in that context either. The best would be to set the story in a medieval time period...yes, I know it makes it a lot harder because you can't use brooklyn as a back drop. Maybe the girl and few knights go through a time portal into an alternate modern day in search of / or looking to stop the dragon(s).

For 14yrs old and up, as you know, they're all into the manga /world of warcraft/ call of duty-esque action/violence. To appeal to them, there has to be fun gore - like a dragon biting off heads.

Either way, you don't want to end up with a 'tweener'.

Yes, it's tough..of course if it was easy, then everyone would be doing it...

Latest versions

Yes. Instead of a whiteboard or some stickys attached to my monitor, I put my notes up on this blog. 
Trust me, it's as exciting to us as it is to you.


10013
350 Canal 
212.966.9573


PAL/NTSC DBC tapes for AI in the vault were received on 17 April 2012 -- 1101 is version "e".


0801 is version C


White glue


The smaller screws for the head need to be 1/2" longer (1" total).


You know what we need here in the Forbidden Palace? A ceiling fan. I love ceiling fans.


An interview with the costume designer of Game of Thrones.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Brain = off

I had a conversation with costume designer Melissa Schlachtmeyer the other day where she was saying that in a dramatic production you must determine the "world" first. And I was all like "You have to figure out the relationships first."
Winston doing what he does best.
And she was "I'm totally right about this."
So I realized that I was probably thinking about it upside-down and I did some more thinking.
+++++
My mistake was a common one. I was ignoring the part of production that was easy for me and focusing on the thing I had to work at. "World building" is a fairly base level thing for my little brain. It's sort of like a task that runs in the background.
++++
Of course the world comes first. And it's not built from the individual character outward. You have to know what the world is in order to (for instance) figure out what everyone is wearing. Sheesh! Why I so dumb?
Well... there's a reason I'm so dumb...
That old cliche of movie trailers where the guy intones "In a world where..." and then goes on to "One guy/girl/robot/well-meaning rabbit must..." you really have the most fundamental things about your story. You have to fill in the blanks. In a world where _________ one dude/princess/rat-of-NIMH must ________.
And although I know that, I don't actually pay attention to that in day-to-day life. I mostly pay attention to cats. Sometimes sparkly things. Sniff sniff... ooh! Is someone baking something? ;-)

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

More waking catzen!

Winston after temporary awakening.

What is up with that spot on Meydl's nose? It moves around, changes shape...

Meydl is obviously very disturbed about being woken up for pictures.

I Love Waking Cats

C'mon. You have to admit that waking up cats is seriously fun and entertaining.
Meydl scrunched up in the back of a chair. 

"Wake up! I want to take a picture of you!"

Meydl goes back to sleep immediately after this. Note sproingy feet. 

Monday, May 28, 2012

Reading Share Thai

This is very important somehow. I'm not 100% sure of how yet. But it is. It's the algorithm for the Reddit ranking system.
I've been reading this book "Quarter Share" by Nathan Lowell. It has a shocking lack of dramatic tension in it, even though it's pretty compelling in the "ooh it would be so cool to be on a space-freighter"-way. Which it would be.
Buy Earthkiller in Thailand!

Blurrykatzen

Cats love my dad. They're also very blurry. You'll notice that the "no paws on the table" — rule isn't even a suggestion anymore. Any cat. Any table. Any paws. 

Winston

Winston is hard to photograph because he's so dark. I put a box over the flash to get this. He loves my red sweatshirt. 

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Monsters for You

I post this video for my sister, just because it's right up her alley.


(Woodkid -- Run Boy Run)

All Parts

Seeing Tom Rowen's booty is something which happens to us on every shoot. But if you want to see more, much more, of his goods then just head over to the Strangewerks blog.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Notes and notes on notes

Script notes and what I'm doing with them.

These are notes from the Queen of Mars on the rewrite I did of the Dragon Girl screenplay which Steve Niles rewrote which I'd originally written, which was based structurally on The Road Warrior (but sooo isn't structurally based on The Road Warrior anymore.) My notes on her notes are highlighted.

- She can't be 12. Make her 16. And that means you can elevate her dialogue. I yanked out references to her age. I don't want to elevate her dialog because it amuses me so. 
- Good work making it not all about dragon fights. That was all Steve Niles.
- I think you add a B story that's about Joe. Make it clear how he's different from the others on his team. Maybe give him a motive to go after Amelia and -- when he can't get to her -- Miranda. Make him more of a continuing mystery. Maybe he is or was tempted to take over like Sebastian? Joe is the "B" story. Got it.
- Give Miranda a motive to do...something.
- Let's not extend the time in the tunnels any more than it is now. No problem.
- Is there a rubber duckie somewhere for Amelia? She saves the cat (Miranda), but do we need to know how she met Callista, watched her hatch, whatever? We're already on her side, but should we learn something about her past?
- Are Amelia and Joe together more powerful than Sebastian? Something that makes it impossible for just one of them to defeat him, but together they can. That's the key. Yes.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Green Grim Booty

Lory Henning on making your theater green.

I am convinced that Grimm is going to become a good show. Really. It will. Faith.

Really.

Why do you keep posting pictures of bunny butts?
I dunno. I think they're funny.
How are bunny butts funny?
Well... they're fuzzy at least.
But that's not funny.
I think I found the one person who is actually offended by the pictures of bunny butts.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Squirrels, Rocks, and Guns

Blind Squirrel makes some amazing props. (Via Tim Shrum.)
I've been reading Jeremy Crowson's new blog on guns.

Darn it. There's a hole in the front pocket of my pants. So I've gone and lost my stone. I need a new one now.
Funny thing about guns in movies, I just hate having guns on set. By "guns" I mean blank-firing guns. Real, firing, guns are completely verboten. But even the special blank-only guns are such a pain that I simply don't want to deal with them anymore.
First of all, talking to me about guns is talking to an Ohioan farmer in 1916 about guns. Guns are neither good nor bad in and of themselves but we have a LOT of rules governing their use. Never point a gun at anything you don't intend to shoot. No loaded guns near the house. Don't dry-fire that .22.*
These rules are burned into my DNA by my dad.
And the rules simply don't work for dramatic purposes.
In a movie you're going to be pointing guns at other people. You're going to be shooting at people for crying out loud (and shooting at robots, and monsters, etc.). And the rules for blank-only firing guns are pretty much the same for real guns. They're fantastically dangerous — with a semi-auto the loads have to be full loads, otherwise the action won't rack back. Bleh.
But that's not all. For a safe set you have to be very careful about where those blank-only guns are stored, when they're being used in a scene, how they're being used, and all-sorts-of-things. And guns are loud as all get-out so you and the crew and the actors all need hearing protection. Furthermore half the time you won't even see the flash of the gun when you shoot. Furthermore the blanks are expensive. Furthermore some guns are simply unpleasant to fire. Furthermore blank guns jam like crazy (because they need to be cleaned even more than real guns which are, in a way, self-cleaning because a bullet actually goes through them.)**
And I just don't have time to deal with it.
With plastic guns I feel perfectly safe just handing them out at the beginning of the day — no special training is needed, nobody needs to babysit them. When we've had a set where police are present you can tell they become much more relaxed when they realize we just have plastic guns. The worst thing you can do with a gun is give it to David Ian Lee (because he'll break it).***

For the kinds of movies we make, actual modern-day firearms are not very sexy. Although a small pistol is very deadly in real life, they honestly do not play well on camera.
You know what plays great? An ax. It's got some heft to it.
Yup. We need bigger guns. And bodysuits that don't wrinkle.


*Seriously, those are the first three rules of guns I know. The "no loaded firearms near the house" is completely anachronistic to me as I grew up in the suburbs and guns were never fired outside there, but it's a rule from my dad's youth so I know it. The dry-firing issue is just that the .22 I had when I was young was my older brother's old rimfire and it would hurt the gun if dry-fired.
**That's not actually the reason — the reason blank guns are so gross is because so much of the powder and the yuk from the blank just fills the weapon rather than going out the front because the front is plugged.
***This is unfair to David Ian Lee because we managed to break more than 50% of the guns on Alien Uprising and his character wasn't even allowed to touch a gun. That being said, ask me how he broke my crowbar sometime.
Hey, while we're on the subject, why doesn't he have his own web page?

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Beauty 50 Duplication

Beauty Box tutorials. Here's a helpful hint for those of you who go through life: when your editor is also the star of your show, do not let her know about Beauty Box. She'll want to use it on all her shots. Ahem.
Plus also too Digital Anarchy is running a special on the new version of Beauty Box — upgrades are only fifty-nine bucks.
Owl always love you.
Did you know that 50 Shades of Grey started as Twilight fan-fiction?
Dan Harmon thinks "Guys like me can’t actually just be shot and left in a ditch by Skynet" which is technically true, although they certainly can be held indefinitely on off-world prison colonies and replaced with android duplicates.

Needs

My parents need a printer. It needs to be a network printer. It needs to be a cheap printer. It needs to NOT require us to replace $50 of ink or toner every six months. So I'm thinking a laser printer. They would like a scanner too — but scanner/network/laser adds a few hundred dollars to the price.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Thuswise

Funny thing about editing The Prometheus Trap -- the story doesn't let us assign different acts to different editors the way we usually do. At least not that easily. Because we're using the same scene, with different takes, over and over, we need to balance each act and each timeline with one another.
++++++
Nicholas Kazan gives what I think is horrible advice. I feel that a lot of writers, at least on the Internet, get all worked up about notes and re-writes. And here Mr. Kazan thinks that just because nobody liked Death of a Salesman's script that we should all give notes as suggestions rather than mandates.

When the real lesson is just that flashbacks don't read well on the page.
Via.

Writers very frequently have no idea what they're work is about. I've seen a lot of smart writers completely miss the subtext of their own play. Just totally not see it at all. And the fact is that although a reading can illuminate some things about a script, there are plenty o' things it just won't show you. Like, for instance, flashbacks.

I'm not on the writer's side. I'm not on the costume designer's side. And I'm certainly not on the actors' side. (I mean... good grief.) The purpose is to make a good movie or play, and the agenda of the writer, the designers, the DP, or the actors, is their own agenda. Not necessarily that of producing good work.
+++++
I mean, we re-write Shakespeare for crying-out-loud. Heck, Shakespeare freakin' re-wrote Shakespeare. What is up with that speech about the freakin' season wherein our Savior was born being a time when there aren't any ghosts? You think they performed Hamlet with that stupid thing in there all the time? No, it was added to appease some investor (or the wife of a guy who had the play performed at his castle.)
++++
Joe Chapman turned me onto the 8 Secrets of Cheap Sci-Fi, which amuses me.
+++


Edge Prison Alliance

Edge Studio had a free library of voiceover scripts. You have to sign up to get access, but the signup seems somewhat harmless.

I read this groovy screenplay yesterday called Prison of the Damned. It's a very strong script. Dude in prison has to team up with a guard when a prison riot opens the gates to hell. Or, as we say in Jersey, "Thursday night". Ho ha!!

Nick Denton interviews our own Nat Cassidy.

I'm not entirely sure what New Artists Alliance really is. They certainly have some nice cover art though.

The following are boring (to you) notes. They're only of interest to me:
+++
why can't dragons go into the forest?
what happened to guns?
Voss/first officer
maybe Amelia realizes Gregor will double-cross them and that's why she ties him up? Actually, I think he tries to hold them at crossbow-point and Amelia and Miranda kick his butt and tie him up.
Gregor and the bartender should be the same person
Gregor is all alone at the inn. Nobody else is there. Man, I wish we still had 35 Hofer Court...
Amelia's goal has to be to get into the tower
Is Sebastian just a D&D dorkus who found himself on top of the food chain after the dragons came? Does he have any power?
The "Rabbit" nickname -- does the woodsman Ralph tell Sebastian that's what she called herself?
Joseph and the Captain are the same person -- Joseph works for Sebastian but has been looking for Amelia all this time under the guise of one of Sebastian's trusted soldiers.



Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Tips, Too, Steel

Today's script tip from Drew. Eliminate the word "Apparently" from any dialog in your screenplay. I'm a serial abuser of this rule myself, so I should know better. But so should you. Just do a search for the words "apparently" and "seemingly" and cut them out. Trust me, you'll be happier.


Plus, also, too. I can't say it enough times. Get the microphone close enough!
Actually, there's too much room sound in this video even with the boom mic for my taste. But the point is taken. Get. The microphone. Close. Enough.
Man, oh, man. Dig these fake rusted metal panels -- made with foam board. They are awesome with awesome sauce.


So that happened

I had a dream that I was supposed to play in the cello section of this symphony. But I hadn't practiced (and I can't play cello although for some reason in my dreams I only have trouble fingering, my bowing is fine). But they didn't have a cello there for me when I showed up before the concert so I was all like "Well great, I'm going back to my office."
But I ended up staying for the concert and it was terrible. You know, like Junior High School string orchestra terrible.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Hint

The answer to this contest is on the Pandora Machine blog.

Headline Shirts

So Headline Shirts is giving away a free T-shirt to whomever I dictate has won a contest on this blog.

The power. It goes to my head.

You could win a shirt that looks like this:
 Or this:
 Or this:
 Or even this (which is the shirt I'm wearing right now).
Headline's shirts are fantastically comfortable. I mean really. They're so soft. And I desperately need a new Vitruvian Rock shirt as I ordered one slightly too small and nobody wants to see that.

So even if you do happen to win a shirt, you'll have to buy more here: http://www.headlineshirts.net/
Headline Shirts Facebook

Plus, also, too, get a $5 off coupon when you sign-up for their newsletter: https://www.facebook.com/headlineshirts?sk=app_133697453315011
And Headline Shirts twitter: @headlineshirts


OK, so what is the contest? In the comments insert the correct word:
"If you got a vodka infused with Drew's favorite thing, it would be ____ flavored."

The first person to answer correctly, whom I choose arbitrarily and without regard to any particular laws, and who has an actual email address to which I can send the code (good for one T-shirt and shipping) wins!

Monday, May 14, 2012

Cool Fambly

Dig my very cool cousin Jaime-Jin, quoted in the New York Times.

"You don’t want [kids] to learn about race and class and power on the playground."

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Three Incoherent Things

Reading Germline. It's clearly written with the author having read Dispatches. It's funny how influential Dispatches is. I'm keen on the third of the Germline books.

The Faithful Soldier, Prompted is a neat sci-fi short story. Since Jeff Somers series I've been interested in the incredibly dystopic notion of the human HUD. The Faithful Soldier seems like a great first chapter of a novel.

I love this Squirrels Squirrels Squirrels T-shirt but I'm not sure I'd ever actually wear it. I will tell you that the quality of the Headlines Shirts is fantastic.

Wednesday, May 09, 2012

How is it Wednesday?

So. Then. Therefore.
Bill Cunningham cracks me up with his Tweet: "Want to learn the movie business? Make a movie and try to sell it."
Hee!
Blender has gone crazy with high-end usefulness. There's liquid particle effects and all kinds of non-stop fun. Check out BlenderDiplom for tutorials. We're putting up all our custom CG models on Blendswap.
Creative Commons is... well it just makes me feel good. And we're a commercial house! But it's no skin off our... teeth... to put models and sound effects (on Blendswap and Freesound) into CC. And we use other people's CC models and sound effects all the time. So why not?


And yes, this is the cat which Ramsey was below: And furthermore.
I thought this book would be interesting. Alternate-history of New York in 1962 when vampires roam the Earth and the US is still colonized by the British.

But the joke is that the one copy Amazon has is $132. Ha! I guess that means the book isn't out yet. ;-)

Tuesday, May 08, 2012

Grrr

Some scumcicle broke into my eBay account. eBay sent me an email saying that my email address was changed. But I was able to get into my account and change the password. Then I changed the password on my gmail account. Sheesh.
I even called eBay to tell them that some bucket 'o garbage had broken into my account. It seems that all they did was "watch" some way overpriced stuff -- a couple sets of coins and some four thousand dollar Leica lens. Of course, looking at the absurd things I really was watching — some Gibson SG bodies and empty guitar cabinets — made me think "Well, maybe I look at absurd things."
But I'm so not interested in coins I can't even tell you.
They changed the address to some Hotmail account. So I called eBay customer service (you can actually do that if you have reason to suspect your account is used for fraud — which a change in email addresses will do.) They said they'd put a flag on my account in case anything more weird happens.
We're looking at you, eBay scammers.

Ramsey

This is Ramsey. Being like a cat on the Internet.
Are all people from Montana this good looking?

Also Doing

As far as I can figure, this whole "credit score" thing the credit agencies have is a new made-up thing that they can charge you money to see. And they created it when the Federal government told them that people have a right to see their credit reports for free. Created for the purpose of having one more thing to rock you for. As far as I can figure.

Just because we're wrapping up on post-production of The Prometheus Trap doesn't mean we're not also working on post for Dragon Girl.

Nathan Vegdahl modifying the Sintel dragon with white teeth...

And with black teeth.
OK, so I'm watching the Felicia Day episode of Supernatural and it's like the music is from a completely different TV show. I must have seen two episodes where something had gone very seriously wrong with the music licensing. Because this show had vastly better incidental music in it.
Sarah-Doe Osborne insisted on a second credit as "Slatrix" on The Prometheus Trap.

Saturday, May 05, 2012

My Dad

Dan Bellware
I was testing out my 28mm lens on the GH1 in my dad's office and I made him turn and look at me in order to take this picture.

Friday, May 04, 2012

Year of Revenue

I'm calling 2012 the Year of Revenue in the Pandora Machine. I've traditionally be very afraid of every damn cost that comes up and this year I'm being much more libertine about spending (small) amounts of money.
You might find you need a Flying Squirrel T-shirt. I'm just sayin'.

So you know if — and this is a big "if" — you could gross between $24,000 and $30,000 average on a feature film, you could make five pictures a year and have a business that's between $125K and $130K a year.
But the question here is how much would producing five pictures a year cost you?
So you've got a big "if" and a big "?" all in one business formula.
Now as for the revenue side of the equation: it would be nice, I mean really freakin' nice, if we could up that revenue to (say) $100K/picture without name talent in it. And the reason I'm against name talent is because name talent ends up costing you more than you can get for North American distribution. So we want $100K/picture without name talent. But we can't get that. So we figure we can get $24K worldwide. That's maybe a little conservative. But not terribly.
So let's pretend we're starting a business where we have $125K to spend but we have to make five marketable movies with that $125K.
OK, so let's look at expenses. Firstwise, there's me. And I'm not 100% sure how much I cost/year. But what I can do is add up all the rent I pay.
And so I think and I guess and I'm going to make the estimation that my so-called "fixed" expenses are somewhere around $35K/year. That's low, I realize, and it involves me not owning a car and suchlike. But I think that's about the right number.
So now we have $90K to make 5 movies with.
To put out 5 movies we need a new one written in less than a month. We need to shoot and post it in less than two months. A feature has to get picture edit and visual effects and dialog, music, and sound effects editing with a mix in less than two months.
That's more work than I can do on my own.
So. Will someone help me? For free? Working 40-hour weeks all year through? Well, is it worth it to them?
And how many people do I really need? Two? One for picture things and one for sound? Working full-time?
How much would that cost in real life? If you're talking two people who can do more than one thing each (picture edit, foley, cgi, etc.) and you pretend that minimum wage is $10/hour and that the actual cost is $12.20/hour when you include taxes and insurance and they're working (no overtime!) 2000 hours/year that's a total of $24,400 a year in costs for the employer (for an employee to take home less than $18K/year -- but they'd make up some of it in earned income credit).
So yeah, that's not an ideal job. But it's a job. And they better be fast. And self-motivated to hold it down. With no medical benefits. Oof.
But we're not done with the person's real costs. The fact is they need a computer and they need a chair and they need a place to sit and, shockingly, all those things cost money. And employee involves overhead. So let's say that they end up costing about $30K/year but the two of them cost $60K a year and that they can handle all the post duties -- picture editing, cgi, dialog, music, and effects editing, mixing and color - grading.
That leaves us with $30,000 to actually make the movies. Which includes insurance, cameras, lighting, locations, sets, costumes, props, transportation, and whatever costs are incurred with writing the movies. Five movies. $30K.
Of course, there's no profit in't. We've gone and defined it with no "profit". For profit we'd have to make six movies...


Thursday, May 03, 2012

Drive Kick Zip and Publish

I'm not so much into Google Drive because I don't want to put my syncable stuff into another folder. I just want an interface where I can click a checkbox next to the stuff I want to sync. Which is why I dig SugarSync.
ProRes is a pain because you really can't render it on Windows machines. Right now I'm using OpenEXR files when exporting from the PC. We'll see how that goes.

Amanda Palmer's Kickstarter campaign is nigh on half a million dollars. Interestingly that's a half million of actual work she has to do. But $5K for a solo artist (without backline even) is not bad for playing at parties. If I could actually construct a sentence that last sentence would have made more sense. I should start a Kickstarter campaign to get an editor for my blog(s).
How to escape from zip ties. Shockingly relevant to our next movie.
Numbers: about book publishing. How many sales it'll take to be profitable.
All I do is steal Harry J. Connolly's content.
You know what I get to do tomorrow? Send my distributor a hard drive with everything we've shot so far on The Prometheus Trap so he can get started making a trailer. I suppose I could wait 'till Monday so we had a bit more of the movie shot but I think that little of what we're shooting this coming weekend will really be stuff that'll end up in the trailer.

Chairs With Wheels

I've seen all of John Scalzi's top sci-fi movies you probably haven't seen except for one — whatever that Buck Rogers thing is.
Ato Essandoh is on the NYC Actor podcast. Angela Dee interviews him. He explains that he has a chemical engineering degree from Cornell. Ato used to be one of the regulars — all men — in the morning at Theatresource. Wow, that was over 10 years ago. Whenever he showed up in a suit I'd say "Lawyer or FBI agent?" because suits would be audition-wear for either of those roles.
"People apologize for being actors... and that's awful... Never apologize for being an artist, never apologize for being an actor ever."

John Bruno discusses his policy of not taking lunch. Except for the bit about complaining about my hair, my one diva thing is that I like to take a half-hour lunch with the cast and crew. I also insist on a comfy chair at lunch because it's the only part of the day I get to sit down. I mean except for those times I claim a "director's chair" to shoot from. It's usually a chair with wheels...


Wednesday, May 02, 2012

"Cut" Means "Keep Acting"

Liquor
So, I haven't been drinking on this set. It's mostly because I'm afraid that it'll mess with my focus. Literally, my focus — I have to manually focus my lens on this picture. I am in love with my Canon SSC lenses. We didn't use them on the last two pictures but boy, they're just beautiful.
My depth-of-field is a quarter of the width of an actor's eye, but the picture is beautiful.

Footwear
I've made another determination: I will put a $100 line item for a new pair of sneakers on each movie I make. Running around on concrete floors all day will mess up my knees. No more of that. One new pair of sneakers for each movie. New Balance 840's are my shoe of choice right now.
They are not a good looking sneaker, mind you. Can I dye them? How about some black paint?

Camera
I do wish the camera I shot on did not have rolling shutter issues. Now to be clear, the only time I run into it where it's a problem is during compositing. So we lock down the camera for all composites (and add a bit of motion like it's handheld later).
Also: the time has come for us to get video tap. I honestly don't understand the need for HD video tap. SD is perfectly fine for seeing what's going on and for focusing.
Furthermore: I don't mind the amount of compression we get with the relatively low bitrate on the stock Panasonic GH1. Those things just aren't where the problems lie for us. Horizontal banding? Yup, that's an issue (and one which I simply cannot guess when will happen or not.) Rolling shutter? That also stinks. Blacks which are sunk forever? That could be an issue, but we shoot around it.*
We shot two features with a hacked GH1 and I've gone back to the unhacked stock version of the camera. First of all, it's more reliable. For those of you who have been on set when the camera has decided to cut and destroy a take, you know exactly what I mean. The camera works as advertised when it's "stock".**


Kermit
Watching takes I realize I sound like Kermit the Frog on a bender. I'm shouting things like "Stay in character!", "I'm bored with not making a movie!", and "Be more aggressive getting that microphone in there!".
At one point I actually said "The word "cut" means "keep acting"!

*The blacks being sunk actually saves us some time in post color-correction 'cause let's face it — you want to sink the shadows anyway. And with the amount of fog we typically have on set our contrast is pretty low anyway.
**I keep hearing horror stories of the RED going down in the middle of a shoot day. That must be incredibly demoralizing.

Tuesday, May 01, 2012

I've been better

Slogging along the road as snow is falling I'm dead. Dead. I have to force myself to breathe -- in and out of the ceramic powered armor that keeps my legs falling in front of one another. Somebody asks me a question and I blather nonsense back at them. I have to sleep.
The Betty picks me up by my harness and throws me into a ditch on the side of the road that our column was trudging across. Just then I heard it. The witch was screaming at me to get down and finally my betty heard the incoming drones — flechettes chewed up the road, chewed up the three marines I was with, nicked Dave the cat in his left ear while the witch gathered him up and put the kitty under her cloak.
In the meantime a 500-pound android lies on top of me while the drones come back for another strafing run.
All I want to do is sleep. I hate this planet. Mud is actually a season here. The crap falls from mud clouds.

Rebecca Kush

Rebecca Kush. I'm pretty sure that's her script and she left it there after we wrapped.
 Tom Rowen sent us a couple pictures of Rebecca Kush which he took on set of The Prometheus Trap.
This is me explaining to Rebecca that she has to have this all edited by next week.