Sunday, 6 November 2011

Where will it all stop - Pre-production Meeting #1

This summary post was originally written for a practical exercise undertaken in the Planning and Making a Film module I undertook in the penultimate year of my BA (Hons). The module's practice was undertaken between October 2011 to June 2012 and it provided me with a hugely enriching experience. For a more detailed overview of the module and the projects I undertook as a part of it, see Planning and Making a Film: The student filmmaking experience.

Where will it all stop is a nine page script that we have to make as a practice short film in preparation for another short film, which will form the basis of our assessment. However, we only have to make one half of the script with the other half being made by another group; the other group consists of Tom, Flo, Danny and Sanne.


For this meeting Emily, Jenny and myself met up with Tom and Sanne from the other group.

The agenda for the meeting:

1) Production Roles
2) What half of the script each group is going to make.
3) Casting
4) Locations

The production roles (for my group) are thus:

Director / Co-Producer – Jenny
Production Manager / Co-Producer / Art Department – Sally
Director of Photography – Me
Sound / Lead Editor – Emily

Previously, Sally had already stated that she wanted to be the production manager and we were all happy to let her have that role. Jenny said that she was quite keen to direct, but said she was happy to flip a coin with myself since I had directed our version of The Eager Student. I declined, though, explaining that I was keen to get to grips with one of the other roles. Emily said she fancied doing sound because it also meant she could be lead editor and this was something she had enjoyed doing on The Eager Student. Therefore, I took the role of Director of Photography, which I am more than happy with.

I’m not quite sure what the other group are doing in terms of production roles as they plan to share them. Personally I don’t know how successful this will be; I think it is something that doesn’t really impede on my group and shouldn’t be something that we should worry too much about.

Deciding what part of the script each group was going to make was simple – we flipped a coin. The other group would make the second half and my group would make the first half.

We all agreed that getting casting sorted out had to be our priority, and we decided on a deadline of November the 9th for auditions and rehearsals. After the meeting Jenny and myself went and put posters up all over campus. However, we also have to find an older man for the very pivotal role of Chuck; for this we are contacting amateur dramatic societies. With the role of Chuck we also discussed the possibility of using a stand in and not having to actually see his face. But I thought this idea would be even harder to achieve than actually finding an older actor!

In terms of locations we needed only two: a pub for the first half of the script and a house for the second half. However, Sally had already spoken to the manager of a local pub The Royal Oak, and he is quite happy for us to use it. The location of the house can easily be filled by using one of our own. 

Finally, we set ourselves a series of rough deadlines to achieve by the following week. These included casting and rehearsing on Wednesday, getting the release form signed for the pub on Monday and to start familiarising ourselves with the equipment that we would be using. Before we departed we agreed that we would all meet up on the following Monday, and hopefully everyone will be present!

Next: Where will it all stop - Pre-production Meeting #2

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