May 16, 2016

Birds flying sideways

It was a super sunny day, as I read the little note in the script that said: “The scene is dark and gloomy.” We rarely depended on the weather on greenscreen shoots and I usually was able to adapt the scene and script to whatever nature threw at us, usually for the better.

In this particular case, I barely slept thee hours last night, the movie make-up I’m wearing is kind of falling apart due to its age and, to top it off, Mihai comes over with a semi-shocked look on his face. He cringes as he says: “We forgot one of the costumes at home.”

There we were, behind some hills, trying to find a good spot to film so the sunlight isn’t too strong, and we discover that we have to go back home. We grin at our own silliness (it wasn’t only his responsibility to check the costumes, it was mine as well so we kind of were equally guilty of the rookie mistake) and we grab everything to go back home. At 8 AM. On a Sunday.

Mihai forgot a costume(Mihai has a Johnny-moment as he forgets to bring a costume)

I truly would rather go back to bed and sleep till tomorrow. Still, we’re not alone in this journey, oh no sir. A very good friend of ours who was kind and helped us with… everything really, was now driving the car back to the city. We apologized and tried to make fun of our slip-up, but this is really the last thing you want to face when you have to start working – being forced to go back.

We drive and drive, turning lefts and rights, when suddenly we find a roadblock and some police officers. Had there been an accident? Our friend lowers his window and asks a passing policeman: “Excuse, me, what’s going on?”

The policeman replies: “Sorry, you can’t go through here until 2 PM – there’s a cross-country competition today so we had to close the boulevard.”

Yyyyep… all the problems in Romania are fixed and all we are missing is a cross-country competition that blocks the main roads through the city. Sorry, almost got into a mini-rant there. I’m sleep deprived right now, please bear with me.

We used modern technology to find some shortcuts and less traveled roads to reach our home. Mihai quickly jumped out of the car, ran and grabbed the costume, then ran back. We triple checked to see if there wasn’t anything ELSE that we had forgotten, after which we were on our way again.

We managed to get back to the location and started setting everything up. We were planning on using a different technique for a special effect which required the use of our greenscreen outside, during cloudy weather. I invested into a chroma key support, and I can confirm that you get what you buy. Not being able to afford a super-duper professional support, I got the most affordable one. It could barely keep the greenscreen up, especially under the fury on the wind.

I’m not kidding, the wind was blowing so furiously, two people had to hold the greenscreen at a time so it wouldn’t fly away or break the support. We used rocks, all while laughing at the ridiculousness of it all – we were already 2 hours behind schedule and we couldn’t even setup our gear.

Wind so strong(The wind was so strong, two people had to hold the gear at a time)

Birds above us were flying sideways and were not able to keep their course, it all looked like a bad episode of “Xtreme Moviemakin’“! We changed the orientation of the setup, along with the position, and found a place that was a little bit better. Still, no matter what we did, we just couldn’t film AND hold everything together, so we had to compromise – we filmed the scenes while kneeling.

In the Plustard series you probably will not notice this, but yeah – right now, for this scene, we are actually kneeling and try to play it off as if we were standing. It rained yesterday so the ground was not completely dry, we got mud on the microphone and the script got a little wet – it’s our only copy so we’d better be careful with it as we don’t have it in digital form with all the newer additions and modifications.

To top it all off, we suddenly started noticing very hard shadows emerging all around us, which meant that the sun was now stronger than ever, with not a single cloud covering it. This is not good for the greenscreen as the shadows your actors cast on it makes them look black on camera. It basically becomes a “blackscreen” and you can’t do anything with it in post production.

We tried our best, but it was not meant to be. Or maybe this place is cursed as last time we tried to film here, we managed to break our tripod (if you guys and girls remember that). Still, we kept our good mood and decided to end the day, with only 50% of the shots filmed. Hopefully, they’ll be usable.

Brothers Forever(Tired and sleepless but smiling – Brothers Forever)

The journey doesn’t end here though. We’re gonna try and finish up the rest of the shots in the upcoming days. This is a very, very, very important and quite tricky scene to tackle – we can’t just go by the old Romanian creed “Meh, it’s fine, leave it as it dropped.” We’re SilverWolfPet and with the help of our friends we’ll bring this project to life to the best of our abilities! 😀

Thanks for reading, guys and girls, and thank you so, so much for your support!


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