Monday, November 23, 2015

Scouting Locations

I've only designed for one film so far - Ciao, an award-winning indie by Yen Tan - but the experience was memorable.  I remember converting two identical condo bedrooms into two different sets, right down to carefully double-stick-taping faux window mullions in one room, to help differentiate.  Cleaning, prepping, and set dressing the kitchen for shooting (which the film crew needed to use for real lunches), having that shoot rescheduled, then cleaning up lunch mess and doing it all again, several times.  Literally waiting on paint to dry for the shot - all of us, the whole production with lights and camera and me with a hair drier hurrying things.  Serious phone conversations from the depths of Home Depot on how to artfully place an on-set towel, "...a little wrinkled, not perfect, 'cause it was used in the last scene, right?..."  And, funniest for the bystanders, us scouting locations...

We drove around Dallas in a little teeny car and, when we arrived at a potential location, piled out:  the driver and AD, a big burly guy with "Rosebud" tattooed on his shoulder; the co-writer/director, a tall, lanky Malaysian guy; the producer, a short, determined, firecracker of a guy who looked about twelve; and me, the production designer, short, plump, gray, looking like their Den Mom.  Kinda like watching a clown car unload.

What brings this to my mind?

This interesting little vid about film locations HERE.

10 Movies That Stole Their Sets From Other Films

This may be the biggest difference between film and stage work, finding real world locations instead of building all scenery from scratch.

Mind you, there's always a lot more modification to that real world location than the audience realizes.

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