This last weekend I had the chance to work on one of my personal film-related goals for this year... to make two short films. I spent three days shooting my first short film that I have wrote, directed and am now editing. The short film is a modern take on the Prodigal Son Parable. I have mentioned this goal in a previous post, but for those of you haven’t read that post, the concept is simple. I wanted to create a short film where I wasn’t limited, where I could take risks and creatively express myself. There are many aspects of creating a short film. In this post I’d like to focus on one specific concept. Plan the Shoot and Shoot the Plan. I know I have mentioned this concept before, but after this weekend it continues to keep ringing true. Specifically I would like to focus on the Plan The Shoot aspect of this phrase. The script for my short film was only three pages, however, it included six locations, four actors and several driving shots. Filming at times can be related to juggling...trying to keep all the balls in the air while adding more balls. There are so many details to keep track off and I find you need to have a solid plan especially when working with a small crew.
Tips for Planning the Shoot:
- Breakdown the script: determine the needs and time each scene requires;
- Colour-code characters, locations, props and picture cars, etc;
- Accurately allot time for shooting scenes: don’t set unrealistic time frames for shooting;
- Location distances: if possible, use locations that are relatively close to each other;
- Pay attention to weather and sunset times;
- Over communicate to your team.
Here is a quick look at the breakdown and shooting schedule.
The above are just a few, simple techniques on breaking down the script on Plan the Shoot. My next post will include more details on how the shoot itself went. Here are a couple of photos from last weekend.