For our 2 minutes of footage we wanted some establishing shots of the holding room where Dobson keeps his traffic. This was because the scene would be shockingly abhorrent and would therefore grip the viewer for s/he would want to know why and who is doing this to them. The footage would begin by teasing the viewer with artistic shots so s/he does not know what s/he is looking at. Then gradually more intelligible shots of what is happening in the scene is shown until the fully explicit shots of the prisoner holding room is being shown. We would have shots of semi-nude, quaking boys lying on mattresses in a dark room with just a bowl of water. On the floor is some odd viscous substance, perhaps vomit. Lighting would be dim and eerie. Although this footage holds many Horror themes to it (darkness, vomit on the floor, imprisonment), the film is designed to be a Thriller as the treatment suggests.
The violent, sexual, and drug related themes of the treatment, combined with the brutality of the 2 minute footage we intend to create, surmounts to us aiming to produce a film of an 18 certificate and specifically targeting 18-30 year olds. This aim to produce a film for the younger sector of an audience above 18 is due to the fact that the leads are teenagers and young adults and the explicit nature of the 2 minute footage, as well as the whole plot, could be perhaps distasteful to an older generation.
Here is the time line we produced to show us roughly what would feature and in what order in the 2 minutes of footage. This will help in editing so we have a plan to what stands where in the 2 minutes. However adherence to this timeline is not an absolute – an explanation as to why it is not comes later in this post.
On the right hand side of the timeline one can see a note about Se7en’s title sequencing. We also recapitulated on different title sequences on our old friend “Art Of The Title Sequencing”. We did not choose to follow Se7en‘s title sequencing though because it was too unorthodox and over artistic whereas we were looking to create something simple and clear which fits in with the gritty realism aspect of the film itself.
For our two captives shown in the footage we needed very slight, teenage males. They needed to be confident enough to be shot in just their underwear and although neither have speaking parts they needed the ability to at least look a little bit scared!
We have chosen a fellow student called Tom Houldershaw to feature predominantly in the shot (head bowed, shivering against the wall), and then have Harry as just laying inert on the mattress next to him. Harry is only in the shot momentarily. If Tom Houldershawe, for whatever, could not attend then we have two reserve actors.
We are shooting in Andy’s garage. It is about 7 feet wide, and 14 long. We are clearing it out for when we shoot in there and setting it out in the following manner.
We have angled the lighting away from the action to throw odd shadows and a half-light over the scene. This adds to the obscurity we are trying to create within the first couple of minutes. Only towards the end of the footage can one fully discern that the shots are of human captives.
The scene we intend to build is comparable to the prison cells in Steve Mcqueen’s Hunger. This film is highly influential to our visuals and I am likely to reference this film again in my blog. Here is a shot from Hunger.
We are going to need the following:
– 2x mattresses
– 2x plasticuffs
– 2x metal bowls of water
– 2x lights (2 torches, 2 candles)
– 1x porridge/pasta vomit mix (we are mixing porridge and pasta to mimick vomit near one of the mattresses)
– 2x pair of boxers
– 1x tub of gel
This displays roughly what we will be shooting. For lighting’s, and angle’s sake, it is likely that we will differ somewhat from this plan, however it is a good guideline for the camera.
Considering our 2 minutes of footage is just a collage of various establishing shots (at first obscure, then clearer, then explicit to the scene) and has no plot or actions at all, we did not endeavour to provide an exact shooting script. We would be instead relying on the arduous process of selecting shots and parts of shots we wanted and then editing them all together coherently. This would mean we must shoot a lot of footage so we had an abundance to choose from and then spend a long time trawling through the footage and discriminating what shots we wanted and what we did not. Although this is a heavily criticisable decision because there is no plan to what we are actually shooting, it is actually our only option from a practical perspective. It is not “winging it” and just foolishly improvising.
1) as previously stated, there is no storyline just establishing shots of the scene, therefore no action had to be followed
2) we could not make an exact plan because it was imperative that the lighting was dark and if we thus found it was too dark to shoot something we had planned we would be improvising anyway.
So to recapitulate: the timeline and storyboard are just rough guidelines because all shooting is dependent on the quality of lighting on location – we could not plan all of our shots and then find that these particular shots we wanted were unachievable because of the lighting. Also what we were shooting anyway was purely scene building. We have therefore thoroughly planned the lay out of the scene,props, actors, and equipment for filming and lighting.