Choke – Day 2
We were docked at Home House for the next 24-hours. We scheduled to shoot for 12-hour and then the remaining 12-hours were to be dedicated to postproduction with my brilliant Editor/ Grader, Sharaz, Sound Engineer, Jamie and Music Composer, Natali.
It meant no sleep for the four of us but we were all pumped and ready to go as soon as the sun came up. But things don’t always go to plan.
The ronin decided to stop working!! We had planned to use it for every shot, as Liam had just acquired it and we wanted to play around with it, however it had a mind of its own.
I guess the 4-hours break we all got the night before wasn’t long enough for this gadget. Liam and our brilliant Camera Assistant, Agatha, tried everything in their power to fix it, but after 2-hours off nothing working we had to go handheld. Technology, go figure lol
One of my favourite things about this challenge was seeing how well my team worked together, how everyone did everything in their power to make every situation we came across work in our advantage.
Our first scene today was outside, and the sun was also proving to be a problem. When we finally started shooting inside we were 4-hours behind schedule. I cut out dialogue, cut out scenes, reshuffled the schedule with Evetta and this helped us speed things up.
Then ronin decided to start working again, yes it just woke up and decided on its own that it was going to finish the shoot – no one knows why. We went back to filming scenes as I had planed with Liam, all in one take, and everything started moving quickly again. This coupled with the amazing energy and teamwork on set, got us back on track and we finished on time.
Thank you to Liam and Agatha for having faith in the ronin and checking on it whenever they had a spare moment and well done to the entire team for really working so efficiently and enthusiastically even when things weren’t looking great!!! I was super proud of everyone.
Our brilliant editor, Sharaz had pieced, with my approval, most of the dungeon scene by the time we had wrapped the night before so he was able to send these to our super talented composer, Natali, way before we thought she would get a locked picture. Natali then worked diligently through the night and through all of today piecing together the theme song and music.
I have known Natali for years, and love her compositions. We loved worked together on Daisy as I love that she is able to take my notes and bring them to life. As soon as we had the screenplay locked, I spoke with her over the phone explaining the types of sounds, beats and instruments I wanted.
Having a musical background really helps me when working with a composer as I usually already hear pieces in my head when reading a screenplay that would work and being able to explain this to a composer really helps them and your production.
We had got all the music we needed from Natali at the same time the rest of the crew finished shooting and so now she was not needed for the last 12-hours and Sharaz, Jamie and I could focus on piecing this puzzle together. Thank you Natali for working so efficiently.
The last 12-hours were the hardest. The edit took a lot longer than I had planned. We had filmed way too many shots that were amazing and now I had to cut them. I really do hate this part of filmmaking. You get such great performances and shots and you have to leave them out because the film has to be a certain length.
I was really happy with the 10-minute version that we put together, however 3 minutes needed to be cut out and so Sharaz and I looked over it again and again and chopped out seconds wherever we could but by the end I had to cut out scenes to get it below the 7-minute mark. We finally locked it at 6 a.m., with less than, 3-hours to go my brilliant sound engineer, Jamie, finally had a chance to start his magic.
Not really much time to work with, however that’s what he got and he pulled through for us whilst we did a small grade and the credits. It was at 6:30 a.m. whilst Sharaz was doing credits that my back started to hurt. Being on my feet all day and being 6 month pregnant started to get to me so I lay down on the couch whilst watching Sharaz.
\It wasn’t long before my eyes started to close. I was not going to have that. I quickly jumped into a cold shower, had another coffee and I was good as brand new for the remaining 2-hours.
The boys did insist I have a nap as there was not much I could do whilst waiting for Jamie to give me his edit, however I wasn’t going to have it, I planned to be up with my crew until the end and that is what I was going to do.
With only 15-minutes left on the clock sound was delivered and now I had to listen to it before we could press send. As much as I trusted Jamie and wanted to send it without that last check, he insisted I watch and listen to it together at least once. He was right, no sleep and so much adrenaline can cause all of us to miss things.
Many of the sound effects that I had initially wanted, like a stopwatch counting down and beeping, he didn’t have time to add and so I made the executive decision to scrap it as in the end we had to get it in on time and this just wasn’t that important in the whole scheme of things, however you might hear it in the directors cut as this was something I really wanted in the film, as it would add the urgency of time ticking away, and that he was trying to cheat the dominatrix, which I wanted in the film; )))
The sound was sounding perfect apart from one line in the middle that repeated itself. Now we only had 10-minutes left and there was no way to render the whole file, as that would just take way to long, but Sharaz and Jamie worked out the quickest way to fix this and we did it, with a minute to go sound was fixed and the file was sent, and then we all breathed out lol
It is amazing how in the moment you are during this challenge. The rest of the world did not matter for those 48-hours.
Everything was go go go… And now it was over. The joy, the excitement, and sadness, all these emotions rushing in on us. It was time to pack, it was time to go home. We could have done another day or two like this at least.
We were all so pumped and on the ball. Couldn’t believe we sent it. We then finally all sat down with a cup of tea, after congratulating each other a million times and watched it again, however this time with eyes that weren’t looking for mistakes but with eyes that were watching it purely for entertainment. We were proud. We did it!!!
48-hours was done, CHOKE was created and there was no turning back!!! Now it was time to go home, to go to sleep. I got to go home and see my baby boy whom I hadn’t seen for 72-hours now. I just wanted to go home and hug him and play with him. I wasn’t going to go to sleep until it was time to put him to sleep as I had missed him and I was ready to go home and be a mum.
This is what we created as a team in 48 Hours
Choked up by wife and the last stages of prostate cancer, John finally decides to take control of his life by seeking spiritual release.
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