Posted: 2020-06-02 12:00:00
We are now into day 4 of filming. It’s hard and gruelling work even though nobody ever needs leave their chair. Except maybe to touch up a green screen, pick up a fallen camera tripod or close a blind to stop the blinding, enticing sunlight for entering our home studios all of which seem increasingly like saunas.
We have made remarkable progress and stuck firmly and resolutely to schedule. The actors are now essentially individual film makers, they are responsible for their lighting, sound, costume and camera work. On top of that they need to do the job they are actually being paid to do- which is the acting.
It’s pressured work and that strain is beginning to show for some who are spending all day filming and then all night battling to upload against the dark forces of slow internet connections. All we can do is remain calm, patient and attempt to offer practical advice and a kindly ear. Then encourage people to just continue calmly and with half an eye on the really crucial job of brining the characters to life.
We can at least begin to show snippets of scenes which have now been unpicked and stitched back together into a semblance of it’s former self as a zoom recording. The results are outstanding. Better than we could have hoped for. This has been the best morale boosting exercise we could hope to offer. It rallies the troops and as you can see from the above picture of Tim- it is hard to imagine that behind all that lay a crinkly green screen hanging from a piece of gaffer tape with 21st century life just out of shot.
We moved onto the more fragile pre war scenes today and welcomed Stephen, Olivia and Maddy into the filming studio as we tried our first major dialogue heavy group scene.
Half way through we heard one on the actors had mislaid a chunk of his recording from Saturday which would need some serious re-shooting and much time spent re organising our toughly plotted schedule as well as the expense of extending all hires by an additional week. On top of this the mornings work was thrown into doubt when an actors microphone seemed to have malfunctioned. One of the real disadvantages of our canny solution to filming all his is that we cannot see or hear exactly what the actors are doing. We can get an approximation through zoom- but there is always a difference between the angle on iPhone to computer and the volume on zoom must be turned down as low as possible to prevent the other actor voices appear in the individual local recordings. This means we cannot ‘check the gate’ at the end of a take. We can only hope and trust. And clearly that hoping isn’t always enough.