As the weekend draws to a close, I’m rapidly approaching the start of production of the second exam film I’m working as cinematographer on at Skurups Folkhögskola. But hang on, what’s all this? It’s been a hectic albeit fun few weeks and I’ll try to fill you in on all the details.
Pre-production of the films started in mid-October of last year. Right from the outset I’d decided not to direct my own film, but to work as DP on as many films as possible (without breaking down… completely). At the start of December, all the teams were set and locked in for next year’s big productions. In total eight films (plus three documentaries) would be produced over four different periods – two films at one time with one week of last preparations in between. It’d be a busy couple of months.
Now that I’m knee-deep into this filmmaking onslaught, it feels quite great. Just a week ago, we wrapped production on the first exam film I shot, titled “Det blev nått slags överslag”. The genre-bending (and also quite mad) film, directed by Jonna Nilsson, was shot during five days and I’m currently working on the edit. So loads of work, but fun stuff. Don’t worry, i won’t be editing the other films I shoot (even if that would be fun, if given the time).
As we decided to co-produce Jonna’s film, we also got to increase the budget slightly and raise our ambitions from a technical standpoint. Pulling resources from various places meant we got to shoot the film using the new Sony FS-100 camera with Canon lenses. We also had a pretty big crew, including some Redhawk Productions veterans, and were able to have a big lighting department, including a big HMI light which we used to beat out the overcast sky and add some sunlights to indoor shots. It’s looking quite nice, and it’s a blast to edit and will be really fun to grade. Big huge thanks to our friends at Intraframe, Smartfilm, Filmcentrum Syd, BoostHBG, Solid Entertainment, Scandinavian Photo and everyone else who sponsored us with equipment for the film and/or have been a big help in any way – you’re all awesome!
The rough cut for Jonna’s film is as good as done, after receiving some great feedback from film editor Erik Bäfving during the week. It was good to get an outside perspective on the film – normally that’d be preferred from an editing standpoint in all facets of post-production. Erik clued me in to what to look for while editing the film, to focus on what the scenes’ goal are, work on trimming and removing unnecessary dialogue, and reducing the scenes to their bare minimum. As I met Erik with the first rough cut of the first few scenes (25% of the film) it totalled 7 minutes. Now after fine-tuning the film’s edit, the whole film stands at just over 9 minutes. Now, I’m sure the edit will swing back and forth a couple of times as we re-introduce some things which we feel might need some clarification in the story. But to look at a long, very unpolished and sometimes boring version of the film in conjunction with the fast, need-to-know-basis version was a great idea, and something I’ll bring with me whilst editing in the future. What lies ahead now is to try and mix in just a few more beats and breaks in what is now a pretty hectic/mad film from the longer version. We’re rapidly approaching a locked edit just a week after the film wrapped production. A good thing considering a private screening of all the exam films is to take place in late May of this year.
On Tuesday production begins on the next film, a drama directed by Simon Minó. It’s a smaller film, considering the scale of the crew on Jonna’s film, but it’s also a challenge, as any project. Feels good to scale back on everything for a week and work on a more personal and intimate story. I’ve tried to work on as different films as possible during the exam period. During next week I’ll try to update the Tumblr feed more often and give you a bigger insight in the productions as they are happening. After the film wraps in a week I’ll also give you some more pictures and a summary, similar to today’s post. Thanks to Matilda Henningsson and Sergej Israel for providing the behind-the-scenes photos featured in today’s post.
Hope you’re all enjoying the beginning of spring, whilst keeping your crative juices flowing! Take care everyone, speak to you more soon!