ORANGE GIRL: Meeting about 1st script draft issues

Today, me and Jonas met for the first time after he finished the first draft of the script and since the overall result of it was not something I felt right to the storyline, we wanted to discuss it before we had a meeting with Helen, later in the day.

The issues I had with this draft of the script were that not only did the script not make sense with what we’ve been discussing prior but also we it lacked the climax (being the secret that Aiste shares with Jonas) as well as it sounding more like a drama than a documentary.

During the meeting I laid out again and more firmly what I felt the script had it wrong and what was lacking and managed to explain my point of view on it and what I felt needed to be changed and/or improved on.

Jonas obviously defended his script but also understood where I was coming from.

The issue that we are now facing goes again back to the ethics that revolves around having someone, this being Aiste, discussing their on-going and still very present issue of possessing and suffering from an eating disorder.

Jonas tells me she might not feel comfortable having that being discussed with him let alone on film, which raises the issue of that being an integral part of the documentary in and of itself.

So, my idea is to have a back plan on what we can use as a replacement in the storyline that will help us when we are on location shooting the film.

After we meet Helen, later today, I’ll blog about her thoughts and the feedback we get to effectively do these changes in the best way possible.

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ORANGE GIRL: 1st script draft + potential sound operator

I’ve been discussing with Jonas, for a while, the notion of how we wanted our story to be presented on screen. This is something that’s been discussed thoroughly throughout the various meeting we’ve had thus far.

And because there are so many ways the story could be told, as soon as we decided on whose point of view it would be told through, slowly the rest started to fall into place.

We knew we wanted it to be told through Jonas’ POV, to have various archival material (photographs/videos of Aiste, home movies of hers, video recordings of both of them together, etc), to shoot in Lithuania where they met, and for their relationship to be showcased in all its truthfulness.

So from there, I gave Jonas the deadline of sending me until tonight the 1st script draft, so we could decide together if this was the way we wanted the story to go or if we needed to have some changes on how it should be told.

I have also been on the hunt of a really good sound operator to come on this journey with us and initially Peter Williams showed a big interest in the project but later, me and him discovered that his schedule was incompatible with the time we planned on filming so he advised me Martin (from the loan store) as a replacement.

We exchanged a few emails and he is quite keen to be part of this project as well and the only potential issue that he’s facing is the need to find someone who can do his shift during our week of shooting, so he can commit to us fully.

I gave him until the end of next week, to tell me if he is able to be part of this project. If not, I am moving to plan B.

Lamentation: Production documents

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Hello!

Here are the documents that I have done for the entirity of the production of “Lamentation”:

Camden Film Office (permit)

City Of London (permit)

City Of London (permit – part 2)

Location release form (corner shop)

Actor release form (David)

Lamentation (pitch)

Overall Schedule

Overall Schedule (detailed)

Shooting Schedule (Day 1 of 4)

Shooting Schedule (Day 2 of 4)

Shooting Schedule (Day 3 of 4)

Shooting Schedule (Day 4 of 4)

Call Sheet (Day 1 of 4)

Call Sheet (Day 2 of 4)

Call Sheet (Day 3 of 4)

Call Sheet (Day 4 of 4)

Risk Assessment (House)

Public Liability Insurance

“Lamentation” short film: Final year project

This is my final year film project for our main module and it’s called “Lamentation”. It was based in an original script written by one of my classmates which I produced.

It was an amazing experience from the beginning all the way to the final product. A lot of hard work and love came into creating it so hopefully you guys will enjoy it as well.

The synopsis is as follows:

Donald, an elderly pensioner in London, has been living the past year as a widower. His wife’s favourite flower was a white rose and throughout the film Donald sees this flower in places that it isn’t really there. In the end, Donald comes to accept that his wife is gone by finding comfort in the memories he shared with her.

Cinematography: Unforgiven (1992)

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Cinematography is much more than merely filming what’s on the page. It is about accurately bringing to life ‘ideas, words, actions, emotional subtext, tone and all other forms of non-verbal communication’ (Brown, 2012:2) whilst peeking through a lens.

The film “Unforgiven” which was produced, directed and starred in by Clint Eastwood is said to be ‘Eastwood’s most acclaimed Western’ (Cornell, 2009:24) because of how it embodies the genre so perfectly through the showcase of the themes of love, life and the disruptions of society. (Sterritt, 2014:166)

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Static wide shot. Opening sequence.

In the opening shot, more specifically a wide shot, the basis of the story is laid down to the audience with a mixture of visuals and textual aid, which establishes the death of a farmer’s wife. The text, assuredly told in the perspective of the wife’s mother, tells of how she never understood how her daughter could have married a man known for his murderous and alcoholic tendencies, known as William Munny (Eastwood). And such is emphasized by the visual stimulant of seeing Munny, as the grieving husband, burying his wife within the sunset landscape of the state of Kansas. (Cornell, 2009:28)

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Medium shot of Munny as a pig farmer.

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Wide shot of the Schofield Kid, superior position in relation to Munny.

Further along, Munny is seen as a struggling pig farmer who is trying to care for his children when he receives a visit from a ‘young gunslinger, (…) called, the Kid’. The visual contrast of Munny, as an old man, being dragged down to the mud by a hoard of pigs whilst Kid, a young man, towers above him on his mighty horse serves as a means to show the inversion of roles between the two characters and how Munny’s past is behind him. (Gallafent: 1994:221)

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Medium shot. Munny after deciding to take up the Kid’s offer.

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Medium shot. Use of natural lighting in outdoor sequences. Scouting out the cowboy they plan to kill.

His past starts catching up to him once more, when Kid offers him the chance of becoming his partner since he is “heading up North (…)” to “(…) kill a pair of no good cowboys”. Munny battles with himself but decided to accept the offer since he sees a chance to gain some much needed money to feed his children since his pig farm isn’t offering much profit.

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Medium shot of Ned Logan. Symbolism of shotgun on the wall representing Ned’s nostalgia of the ‘good old days’ with Munny.

An old partner in crime of Munny, called Ned Logan, is also recruited for the job and the two of them alongside Kid, start on a venture that, for all intents and purposes, serves to ‘avenge womanhood’ (Gallafent: 1994:223) as they intend to punish those who wrongfully attacked an unarmed woman.

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Wide shot. The ladies taking care of Delilah after the attack.

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Medium shot. William Munny, half in darkness half in light.

In summary, the shot right before the trigger is pulled, in the final sequence where Munny kills Little Bill as an act of revenge for his fallen comrade Ned, shows William with his face half bathed in light and half consumed by the dark. This play on lighting represents his inner turmoil of being stuck between Good and Evil, eventually sealing his fate as the trigger is pulled and he is seen retreating further into the darkness of the dingy saloon.

 

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Medium close up. Delilah’s cut face as she inspects the new arrivals to town.

The themes of injustice, which comes from perpetrators not paying for their crimes; vengeance, as to avenge the maiming of an innocent woman and ‘the tragic cycle of violence and reprisals’ (Wilson, 2010:90), that eventually led to one or more characters being condemned by their actions, were what captivated Eastwood the most because of how realistic they were.

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Wide shot. Strawberry Alice (center frame) with the rest of the prostitutes. Powerful stance against Delilah’s aggressors.

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Medium close up. Kid right before he kills for the first time.

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Medium shot. Ned being whipped by Little Bill.

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Sheriff, Little Bill, saying his last words. Low lit, overhead shot.

If the rowdy cowboy had never felt belittled by the naïve prostitute because of his ‘teensy little pecker’ (Kitses, 2010:308), then he would never have lost his temper, which means Strawberry Alice and the rest of the prostitutes wouldn’t have put out a bounty to whoever kills the cowboy, which means that William Munny would have still been living his poor life with his children as a failed pig farmer instead of shooting the sheriff of ‘Big Whiskey’ along with the majority of his deputies.

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Low angle shot. Munny after killing Little Bill. The point of no return.

This represents how ‘violence begets violence’ turning it into a vicious cycle that merely provides more split blood. (Kitses, 2010:308)

 

[DISLCAIMER: All the images were taken from the internet.]

 

Hope you guys like this!

 

Rita x

Lamentation: Day 2 of 4

Hello!

Today was the first day of our indoors filming period.

Prior to the shoot day, I sent out all of the call sheets and sent additional messages to everyone to make sure they knew when their call time was in.

David has also continuously showed how much he is devoted to this project with his recurrent emails with questions and ideas which are so lovely because commitment is something very much appreciated by myself and Alex.

So up to the day before shooting, me and David exchanged a lot of emails because we were very focused on getting the clothing completely right because there would be a lot of jumps in the time frame of the four days we were going to film in and David needed to know exactly what clothes to bring with him for what days of the week.

My initial idea was always that Donald would wear dark clothes in present time where he is a recent widow who mourns the loss of his wife, and in flashbacks with Eleanor, Donald would have a lighter colour palette when it came to his clothes. The meaning of the contrast in the colour palette, as exhibited by Donald, is that it is a complete showcase of Donald’s inner emotional turmoil and how it affects and influences everything around him.

So today, we started shooting already during the afternoon and we mostly only had to shoot a sequence of shots that encompassed the leaving the house frazzled after being faced with his inner demons and arriving to the house after being reconciled with his past. Basically, the first scenes we had to film were some of the most important as it showed Donald’s character at his lowest and also at his turning point.

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It was a lovely day as we were able to film everything we needed  with two hours to spare! And everyone enjoyed their cups of tea, sandwiches and biscuits that I brought along.

A happy crew is always what we aim for! But let me tell you, making 10 cups of tea at once isn’t for the faint of heart.

Lamentation: Day 1 (part two)!

Hello!

So this is a continuation of the filming period during the first day.

After we finished filming in Hampstead High Street, we packed up all of our equipment plus bags and headed off on a 15 minute walk to the park where the second part of the filming would take place.

As we were walking past the tube station, I spotted my house mate Jessica and her boyfriend Dean who arrived just on time since they would be the two extras in our film that would be the couple.

When we arrived on location, me and Erin started to organize the picnic scene with all of the props that included the picnic mat and consequent prop food, that was food that I made the night before.

As prep finished and the extras were briefed, shooting went smoothly and rather quickly as the chemistry between the two was very apparent which worked with what me and Alex wanted. I even got excited because I had the idea of bringing grapes so that Jessica could throw them at Dean’s mouth so that he could catch it in a cute, romantic way and it actually worked visually which made me and Alex very happy.

Later on the day, Jane (the actress) arrived whilst me and the rest of cast and crew were having lunch break at a local pub near the park called “The Freemasons Arms”.

Erin was charged with meeting Jane at the tube station and walk with her to the pub as she didn’t know the area plus to help with any luggage she would bring with the change of clothing for the picnic scene. Immediately after she arrived, Jane was the life of the party! Such a lovely lady and her and David got along right off the bat, especially since it was their first time meeting in person!

The shoot went smoothly from then on as the actors took instruction quite well and weren’t afraid to be intimate when we needed them to.

Overall, it was a success and apparently everyone enjoyed my assortment of sandwiches and snacks that I made which was a bonus for the whole event.