Lights: Third Shoot

It’s been a few days since the third shoot for Lights took place. I made a post earlier about some of the events leading up to the shoot, and I alluded to some problems.

The third shoot was an incredibly long day. I was awake for about 24 hours, and we ended up calling it quits for the night because everyone was so exhausted. We completed 5 scenes, but fell behind on schedule again. Lighting is still proving to be a really large undertaking for my crew, and this sets us back on schedule. That’s what happens when you set most of your movie at night though.

We started off the morning at 6am. There was a scene that was set at sunrise, and for that day the sun rose at 7:11am. Shooting at sunrise is incredibly interesting. We were moving so fast. I have really never seen a production move about so quickly. Once the light of the sun started showing up, there was really no going back. If we missed it, we couldn’t try again. We had to film some of the first shots for that scene over again because the light had changed so dramatically, but we were able to get everything accomplished. I think it’s going to look great.

Our next order of business was to head out to the college campus where I needed to film the next three scenes. Everything started out decently. I had to step into an acting role of course which I felt made things very difficult. It takes so much time to act in a scene and then review the footage to see if it went the way you wanted it to. My wonderful extras were there, and one of them was even able to help with the production. The sun was completely risen now, so he was able to help out with reflectors. That was a massive help.

The scene after that though is when I encountered problems. I had originally intended for my scene to be shot in a cafeteria setting, but every door to that building was locked. This was pretty peculiar to me since I usually recall that building being open.  Since we couldn’t get into that location, we had to find another, so we ended up filming in an ordinary building’s lounge area.

This building was much more confined than what I was intending to work with, so my extras weren’t as necessary. In order to utilize them, we set up a tracking shot to show the scene, but then I sent them on their way. This was probably a good thing because if I had been in my original setting, I would have found myself in a difficult situation. I only had my extras until 12:30, but it took us until 1:30 to finish the dialogue in the scene.

After finishing that scene, we broke for lunch and resumed around the time the sun was starting to set. We went back to the campus and filmed that scene, which I felt went off without any problems. We grabbed some driving b-roll on our way back to the next location, and then we had a decision to make.

I knew at this point that we were going to be unable to film every scene that I had planned to shoot that day. There were 5-6 scenes left on the to-do list for the day, and it was 7pm. It had taken us 13 hours to get through 4 scenes, so I knew the full workload that I wanted to get done was not possible.

We decided to move on to scene 20. Overall, the production of this scene went over smoothly, but we did have some hiccups at the beginning. It had been a long day. We were all exhausted. I know I was getting confused easily. There was some confusion over the pacing, continuity and the overall story which needed to be cleared up. The temperature had dropped drastically, and in my determination to finish things, I ignored the signs of frost bite that I was apparently getting. Production halted until I put on more items of clothing. Once we got past that, the scene was a nice way to end a really long day. It was somewhat fun.

I got to drive fast.

Since we did fall behind schedule, I have put another make-up shoot on the calendar. Hopefully we will be able to wrap up principle photography this coming weekend. If not, filming will definitely be completed by the first week of February.

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