Sunday, 24 July 2011

Lego and move on

The list of things we’re losing in the fire of final pre-production activity is growing.

Exercise, drinks with pals, breakfast, respecting my woman, leaving the flat, food shopping, watching movies, laundry, 8 hrs sleep. And keeping up with the blog. All things of the past.

I had thought that we were operating in our highest gear, but it turns out that we did need to up our workload even more. One friend’s mother has just passed away, and I can’t get out to see him. Another has just gone through a painful break-up, and we aren’t going to get that night in the pub to drink away his angst. The film has swallowed me whole, and left behind only the promise of September apologies.

We are now working 9:00 am till 2:00 am everyday, with the only reason I can find an hour to write today because Jake is off at his nephew’s Christening. He’ll be ducking out of that one as early as is socially acceptable, and he’s the baby’s Godfather. I think he intends to make his nephew an offer he can’t refuse.

So where is all the time going? There are still the standard activities of prop buying, horde management, ironing out the last production minutiae and picking up all the little bits and pieces. But the monster that has subsumed everything else is the story-boarding and shot list.

Half of this is a fabulous task – you get to pre-edit the whole movie, plan shots, pick camera angles, and draw a million pictures of the action as the movie develops. And then there’s the other half; the ball-ache. Have we crossed the line? Can we keep our actor in the same bit of the frame between shots? What the hell were we thinking when we wrote this line of action in the screenplay?

And this is where having kids is a massive boon. The single best tool we have in preparing the story board is Lego. My God, I love this stuff. I’m sure we’re not the first people to have figured this out, but when we cottoned on it sped us up by about 400%.

What we have here is your fairly standard kitchen-based zombie assault, featuring (from left to right) Sykes, Lozza-the-zombie, Gandhi, Stuart-the-second-zombie and Beaumont. And that pen lid? It's where the camera is going to be. Remember this picture when you finally get to see the film. Simples.

I say simples, but it still takes us around 3 hours to plan a day’s filming on set. We kick off next Sunday and it’s a 24 day shoot – you do the maths.

Anyway, a massive thanks to any of you that have volunteered for our hordes. We are now replete on all three nights, and I should really be sending people some further details rather than writing this. But sadly, it turns out that while I can do without the sleep, alcohol and sex, I just can’t seem to quit this blogging lark. Lonely.

1 comment: