Thursday, 21 April 2011

Bollied beef

Well, that’s me done with the Baraat, and it’s over to Mr Hawkins for week two.

Blimey – what an insane week that’s been; apologies for the extended radio silence. While Jake has been fielding the initial deluge of casting applications for Resurrection (more about which tomorrow), I’ve been sticking boom-poles in people’s faces and generally getting in the way on the Bollywood Baraat film-set in Southampton. And it has been a slice.

As a guy that has plenty to learn about both making movies and Indian cinema, this has been quite an eye-opening four days.

So, other than reinforcing my total admiration for gaffer tape as a solution to 90% of life’s problems, what have we learned?

1.      Plan. The Baraat Director and DoP had so much shared film-making experience between them that it was like being stuck between two Rainmen at times, watching them mentally cut the film in their head as they went along. Jake and Andy should instead rely on months of extensive preparation.
2.      At those moments when you’re testing your actors’ patience by demanding take-after-take of the same thing, just ask the cast member with the most to lose (which is usually the one with the hardest line in the scene) if they “want to do one more”. It’s a guaranteed yes. And then it’s their fault for holding everybody else up.
3.      Pakorah are made from onions, red chilli, coriander, gram flour and ajwan (with an optimal ratio of two cups of gram flour for every three onions). Their odour sets off a strange Pavlovian hunger reflex, and they can be enjoyed with or without the sweaty residue from extensive actor handling or carpet-fluff.
4.      If you lend a film crew your house to film in, resist the urge to pop back while the shoot’s going on. Chances are you’re going to be under-delighted with the way the space has been re-imagined. On day two the home-owner came back for a gander, and while she was there her phone rang; sadly it had been “dressed” into a cupboard, with gaffer-taped cables on the floor outside making it impossible to open the door. A small part of my heart broke as I stood idly by watching her try to answer it.
5.      Everybody can be excused a “funny five minutes”. And usually at the same time every day.

Anyway, just in case they’re reading this: Dave, Rob and Sam – it has been genuinely delicious; thanks. You’re all most welcome to come and loiter in a local sixth-form college come August. For everyone else, the fruits of the Baraat are available to all at Southampton’s Guildhall Square on Saturday 21st May, and it should be quite a party. Any complaints about the poor quality of sound should be directed towards m’colleague Mr Hawkins. Deaf.

1 comment:

  1. Can I offer a Point 6) Always try and remember that filmmaking is one of the silliest profession in the world - so laugh even though your head is aching.

    Point 7) pick a good crew who know the score and will put up with small spaces and sweaty compatriots.

    Sir, the pleasure was all mine just remember, "I just don't like horses."

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