Fan Filmmaker's Primer

Discussion in 'Fan Productions' started by Maurice, Dec 9, 2010.

  1. Ginandtonic

    Ginandtonic Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    Couldn't agree more, improv often results in better ideas.
     
  2. lennier1

    lennier1 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    How is that different from the newspaper front pages filmmakers have been using for decades because they allow them to seamlessly convey a message without having to break from the atmosphere of the story? Sounds like she simply chose the best option, saving herself time and expenses at the same time. Just shows she's efficient and can work on a tight budget, which is always a good talent to have.
     
  3. MikeH92467

    MikeH92467 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    No disagreement. It's just that the initial thought was to use normal graphics and when it wasn't available, she didn't pack it in, she just found a workable alternative, that actually turned out better. Actually the TOS example is even more interesting in its own way, because it shows that even full-scale professional productions run into these kinds of issues.
     
  4. Maurice

    Maurice Vice Admiral Admiral

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    ^^^I'm a big believer in embracing limitations and using them to force yourself to be more creative. The idea of using thrown newspapers is a clever solution to a problem that I can imagine made the title sequence more interesting than it'd otherwise have been. Bravo to your friend, Mike.

    Dennis and I were a few weeks ago discussing ideas for the opening titles for POLARIS, and as we both were tired of flying through starfields under space movie credits, we started discussing alternatives, looking at all kinds of title sequences from suspense and dramatic pictures from the 50s and 60s to break ourselves out of the conventional mindset.
     
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2011
  5. Admiral Buzzkill

    Admiral Buzzkill Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Yes we are, but in the end I suspect there's a reason that DS9Sega addresses me from time to time as Mr. Debris...
     
  6. Maurice

    Maurice Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Roger that! ;)
     
  7. Admiral Buzzkill

    Admiral Buzzkill Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Bring in the chorus girls.
     
  8. Maurice

    Maurice Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I remember you telling me, "Of course, I think we should add a little music...and that whole first act has got to go. They're losing the war? It's too depressing."

    It's DeBris, by the way. Oy.
     
  9. Psion

    Psion Commodore Commodore

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    Dandruff?
     
  10. Admiral Buzzkill

    Admiral Buzzkill Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    that's Bigboo-TEY.
     
  11. The Trekster

    The Trekster Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    I haven't finished reading the thread yet, and so far you guys are giving out good beginner advice. I just wanted to add a couple tips if that's cool :)

    For the price you can't beat 'em. And Canon does have the market cornered. But, while technically not DSLRs, the GH1 and GH2 have been producing amazing results, and have a lot more filmmaker friendly options when hacked. I usually rent but if I were going to buy a rig for under or around 2 grand, it would probably include the GH1/2.


    Don't forget the type of mic. As a general rule of thumb, you're going to want a cardioid condensor mic for indoors and a shotgun mic for outdoors. A shotgun indoors is one of the things that will give you that horrible distorted roomy noise due to the narrow pickup pattern.

    One of the nice things about digital vs. film is that the camera is still recording audio which you can then use as a scratch track to align the wave forms when you're editing. This means that you can get away without using a professional clapper board and just have someone clap their hands on screen. :)


    For better results, pleat the sound blankets when you hang them. It means a lot more blankets but it absorbs significantly more sound.

    Yep. Leave camera directions and other production notes for the shooting script.


    Check out http://www.kickstarter.com
     
  12. Maurice

    Maurice Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Always. This is a forum, not a lecture, after all.

    I assume you mean the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH1 & GH2.

    Yep.

    Sure, but if lining up with the camera sound doesn't work for some reason, then you've got nothing to sync with if you don't have a visual clap. (To further complicate matters, I've noticed that the sound of the slate clap almost never actually occurs on the same frame as the image of the slate closing. Why this is I don't know, but when step through the footage I find the sound happens a few frames before.)

    The slate is also important because it also holds the reel/card #, the shot # and the take, and if the files get renamed or there's some other problem, you can always look at the slate.

    Yep again.

    I'm a tad confused by this comment because we were discussing not having excessive detail in the script, period. You DON'T want to put excess detail into a shooting script.

    Also GoFundMe, which doesn't require you to reach your goal in order to get any the monies pledged.
     
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2011
  13. Loken

    Loken Lieutenant Commander

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    DSLR's are the future. The last episode of House this past season was shot on one and if you see it the results are STUNNING.

    You just need someone who knows how to shoot with them since you need to pull focus.

    Just make sure you have a DP with experience using them.

    Alec
     
  14. Maurice

    Maurice Vice Admiral Admiral

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    ^^^You never want to use an autofocus mode on a camera anyway!
     
  15. MikeH92467

    MikeH92467 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Absolutely correct! Autofocus will always (well, maybe not "always" but far too often) focus on the wrong spot. It happens with both still and video cameras. Last year I had my camera at a little league baseball game and my camera was on "auto". On way too many shots, the camera focused on the back of someone's head who was standing between me and the action or some other object that got between me and the action. Also "rack focus" where you change the focal point from, say, Lt. Uhura at the back of the bridge to Captain Kirk in the center seat, simply isn't possible with auto.
     
  16. The Trekster

    The Trekster Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Yessir.
    That's interesting. Only explanation I can think of is that the sound actually begins when (ahem) first contact is made, vs when the slate finished closing?
    Very true. I don't have a tablet myself, but I've heard really great things about the slate app for the iPad. It does timecodes and should have that pesky problem you mentioned above.
    On another note, and maybe you've mentioned it, but it's best also to read all that info that's on the slate out loud, for the same reasons you mentioned, if file names get mixed up etc.

    Sure not excess detail, but my shooting scripts include notes and, when important, camera angles and definitely always a shot list. Like this:
    [​IMG]
    Hadn't heard of that one, thanks :) Although I do go back and forth on the whole "all or nothing" vs "keep what you raise" debate.
    Just a heads up, too, there's some legislation in the US congress right now that is going to have a big impact on crowdfunding, one significant statute is that donors who pledge 10,000 or more must be considered investors and you must file paperwork accordingly. That would probably not effect fan films with small budgets, but what will is the rule that you're going to need to raise at least 60% in order to keep any funds. (If the bill gets signed into law, that is :))


    On another note, I'd like to give a shout-out/plug to a filmmaker friend who's production company puts out a lot of great free resources for indie filmmakers. http://sonnyboo.com/downloads/filmmaker.htm
    He's got a lot of the documents you'll need like location and talent releases, breakdown sheets, etc; video clips of things you'll need if you need to make something broadcast ready (like SMPTE bars and tones); and also a film tips show called Framelines (which you can also catch on public tv if you're in Ohio and a couple other midwestern states.)

    Ok, I think I've rambled enough. Thanks for putting up with me :)
     
  17. FalTorPan

    FalTorPan Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I recently purchased an Azden SGM-1X shotgun mic. Which cardioid condenser mic(s) might you recommend for the budget-conscious, aspiring filmmaker?
     
  18. The Trekster

    The Trekster Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    I'm no audio-gal so I'm going to quote a pro from another forum.

    If you're willing to spend more to get some real pro gear, I can get some recommendations.

    But remember, a mic is only as good as the person swinging the boom and mixing. So practice practice practice. (Or hire someone, that's what I do :P)

    edit: Here's a link to his blog. Every indie filmmaker should read it! http://www.myspace.com/alcoveaudio/blog
     
  19. FalTorPan

    FalTorPan Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Thanks to you and anyone who has audio recommendations. In my opinion the weakest technical aspect of my recent project was audio.
     
  20. Maurice

    Maurice Vice Admiral Admiral

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