Wednesday, April 4, 2018

The First Big Shoot Part Two

Saturday the 24th Chris and I met up, we'd been doing weekly coffee at a shared destination. This is where Chris and I discuss our journey into the wild unknown forests of feature film making. Picture us, in the months to come if you will, huddled together at a small campfire in the woods struggling for survival and fending off wild hyenas who keep trying to steal our canned goods. Or, more truthfully, Starbucks, bullshitting about our favorite films while smooth jazz plays in the background. Hyenas always make things more interesting though. I'll try to work them in later.

Today was different, this was the day before the big shoot. This was a very important coffee date, even the smooth jazz seemed more intense. Chris still had a billion things to look after, and I realized I would try to come up with at least a rough shot list, as well as make some nifty lanyards for the crew. As for the crew we had asked Mike West, Shea Vanlaningham and our old buddy Dave Ewing to come along for the ride. On top of being awesome dudes, we knew we could place our trust in them. A last moment addition was Charlcee Davis and thank goodness she accepted. Meanwhile, Mercy's (Adrienne Jordan's) Blue dress still hadn't arrived, and I knew an unpleasant trip to the local print shop for lanyard graphics was looming. I looked down into my ominous cup of coffee and it seemed to spell out a message in the dissipating cream.

Shortly I arrived at the print shop with a bulging thumb drive in my pocket.

"Would you like a color copy?"
"Yes." I said hesitantly.
"That will be 300 dollars."

Nifty lanyards for the crew
With the rising price of ink, this scenario always plays out in my head, and it comes down to, A) buy a new color cartridge and get screwed, or B) go to the print shop... and get screwed. I got screwed but left with lanyard graphics. Oh yes, these graphics were going to be put into a plastic sheath and hung from a soft cord; and that is money in the bank. You offer someone a lanyard they're putty in your hands.

The dress that never was
If only...

Anyway, the day progressed and I got word from Chris that the blue dress had arrived. With a mighty Woot Woot, I texted Adrienne to let her know that she wouldn't have to wear a pretty horrible blue mess I had a bought in desperation a few days earlier. Ok, lets forget the fact that it was far to shear for a courtroom. Lets just focus on the determination of a fearless filmmaker who would brave the womens section of a thrift store.

Soon the day became night, and I lay in bed with my trusty friend the laptop trying to figure out the shot list. Not being able to plan this out properly bothered me. I hadn't been in the courtroom where we were shooting in months. Also, again, not knowing how many extras we would have was totally throwing me. I wound up making two different script versions, one with extras, and one without. I figured if we had only, say five people show up as extras, then it would become a very small town court, and tinker with the script to present a closed court scenario. If there was a huge turn out, then the script would reflect a media hyped type court scene, either of which I could use in the film.

Then I told myself I needed to get some sleep and turned out the light.

About 4 hours later, I think I finally fell asleep. I don't remember dreaming, but if I did it was probably about hyenas, wearing blue dresses and lanyards while poking me with gavels as an audience of spectators applauded. (I told you I'd try to work in the hyenas)

But morning came as it inevitably would and luckily the loss of sleep was being replaced by adrenalin. I knew I was prepared as could be considering the circumstances, I knew the actors would be awesome and I knew Chris would be there with his relaxed yet engineering brain. What could go wrong? Well, a lot. But this was not the time for that. This was one of those rare occasions in peoples lives where they have the chance to seize the day. Although I would have liked to seize more coffee, off I went to the big shoot.

To be continued....

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