Digital innovations and Filmmaking -

Monday, August 27, 2012

Globe - Behind the scene

Globe's filming ended in May 2012 after the last schedule was shot in Nantes. Globe's post-production is in progress and I think that it's time for me to wake up my lovely blog. I was wondering if I could offer any tips on how to help you to make your first feature film, and I thought that I could simply share the technical stuff we have used to make Globe. Maybe, it could help... I don't know if it's the best way to make your first feature film if you have a limited budget. In fact, I'm sure that it isn't, but I don't care! I also don't know if I want to use the same workflow to make my second one, but, here we go!

Crew : Francis Frenkel, Alain Brasseur, Emmanuel Joseph, Céline Disint, Zed Bruno, Catherine Caldray, Caroline Audrain
Cast : Carole Reppel-Baele, Anthony Bertaud, Bruno Henry, Dominique Prié, Vivienne Vermes, Phillip Schurer, Christophe Jouzel, Nolwenn Le Floch, Sébastien Froger, Antoine Ohron, Adrien Comelli, Daniel Macaud, Samuel Decoux, Gilles Richard...

First things first, the production side... 

Last year, I watched Dov Simens' DVDs again and again. Dov's film school helps to keep the focus on what's really important for independent filmmakers who want to come into this industry. Turning some of the Dov' magnetic power of persuasion inward could recharge your faith and build a deeper confidence in yourself.

In my opinion, the best way to make your first feature as an independent filmmaker is to do your job as best as you can with your budget and skills... Stay on budget! Try to do as many things as you can and try to identify complementary people to make your crew... and don't let people say that you can't do a feature film with only six crew members. It isn't easy but I think they are wrong! I've heard this sentence so many times in the last year...

Hire a great artist to design a beautiful pre-production poster! It changes the way people look at your filmmaking project! Of course, it could help if you plan to launch a crowdfunding campaign like us (Ulule) to get the end of your budget, but also remember that location scouting is a vital process in the pre-production stage of filmmaking, and this poster is really appreciated by the location owners...

Let's go right into the core of the discussion...

Learn from the masters! I have read many books in the last ten years but two of them really helped me in the last six months.

Learn from computers! Digital revolution is in march, DSLRs, NLE, iPad, what an amazing period! Stay connected!

I wrote the first version of the Globe's screenplay with Celtx, an open source software you probably already know. In december 2011, Wayna Pitch hired an english screenwriter Barth Hulley to write the english dialogues of the film and we work together in the Celtx collaborative environment. I have to say that it works fine!

During Globe's pre-production stage, I used my own computing experience to move on. 

In theory, the script breakdown involves taking every scene in the movie and placing it on a production board. I created an Open Office spreadsheet (complex but powerful!). The pre-production schedule was created with the Shot List app on the iPad (amazing in its simplicity!).

GoodReader is The Must-Have document reader for iPad and it is the perfect tool on the set for the director to direct the story and the actors, to keep organized and share the vision, no sheet of paper, everything in the right place : the script, the notes, the homework, the shot list...

I recently read on nofilmschool that Magic Lantern is no longer a Hack... Francis and me agree! We use it during 26 days on two Canon 5D mark II and I assume that we couldn't have done this without it. V2.3 is really a mature release with more professional features than any other cameras (focus, exposure, bitrate...)

Post-production, here's where we are today... Editing in FCPX and DaVinci Resolve 9 for color grading! ProRes 422! Two 3To hard drives! FCPX is for me a great professional NLE. The only thing that really drives me crazy in FCPX 10.0.5 is that I would like to copy, paste and remove individual clip attributes, effects, rather than the shotgun all or nothing way it is done now...

Friday, April 13, 2012

Globe - The Cast & Crew in action

I'm currently working on Globe, my first low budget feature film... We started to shoot on march 27th and we'll finish on april 27th. The film is entirely shot with two Canon 5D Mark II, two Zoom recorders (H4n and H2), two wireless lavaliers, one Rode NTG-2 microphone, and different types of camera supports... You can follow us day by day on Facebook and/or Ulule.

The cast in action...

The crew in action...

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Participate in the funding of Globe... Receive exclusive rewards!

Here we go!!! I just launched my first fundraising campaign on Ulule...

Globe is a 2 hours feature film project. It is a mixture of realistic science fiction and psychological thriller, on a background of game and travel. The story takes place mostly at night in Nantes.

I wrote the screenplay and Bart Hulley wrote the english dialogues. Wayna Pitch is the executive production company. The shooting has been scheduled between march 27 and april 28, and most of the cast and crew is ready to go!

What is Ulule? Ulule enables you to discover original projects and products. A new way to help, share or participate in bringing original ideas to life. You can participate in the funding of many types of projects and receive exclusive rewards...

The pre-production poster by the so-talented Krystel.

An english girl who can read minds revisits her childhood doctor in Nantes to reclaim something that he took from her. 

Faro defeats an old man in a clandestine contest of "Wiphala", a game involving a form of teleportation known simply as "le voyage". He is then challenged by Marius who suspects Faro of cheating. Sometime later Nattie, a girl who can read minds, and her brother visit a special clinic in France to meet her childhood doctor and to reclaim a small globe that he took from her when she was little. Reunited with her globe Nattie rediscovers her ability to "voyage" but, despite help from others at the clinic, her fear of the dark remains; a mysterious couple with a connection to Faro, Marius and an unsolved murder are watching her every move.

If you would like to help us make this movie, follow this link: Jonathan’s Crowdfunding Ulule Campaign.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Demo Reel 2011 - One year of blogging

I'm really glad to celebrate my first year of blogging about filmmaking… Well, one year of happiness!

My schedule is really heavy in the beginning of this year, because of the pre-production of my first feature film, but I took the time to make a demo reel.

What has this year of blogging given to me? Why did I need it? Apart from the obvious - an unexpected number of visitors, more than a ten thousand different eyes - the answer is quite simple… It has allowed me to grow, given me valuable knowledge of the filmmaking industry. I tried to share what I've learned, most of the time on Twitter, and sometimes on this blog when I had enough time to do something interesting.

Blogger, Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Vimeo, Tumblr, LinkedIn have allowed me to meet many filmmakers from all over the world and see their work and talk to them about it, often virtually, sometimes physically, within Nantes (FR) and abroad… As another example, Jamendo is a nice network for filmmakers because it helps us to make contacts with great music authors.

Vimeo Twitter Facebook LinkedIn Google+ Viadeo Jamendo Blogger IMDb Tumblr

I could take many examples to show how social networks are important in the new independent filmmaking world, not only one network, but all of them... I met several of the actors of my new feature film on Facebook. I met many other french filmmakers on Vimeo and Twitter. On Google+, I met the screenwriter who actually helps me on the screenplay of my new feature film. Finally, most of the producer I know have a LinkedIn page. I keep in touch with my computing network on Viadeo, and I created an IMDb page when we submitted the short film Russian Sandglass to the Stepping Stone Film Festival, but this page exists just for fun ;-) I don't really like social networks, but our world is changing and, therefore, we have to evolve with it...