Sunday, 19 April 2015

April 18th, 2015

A productive day for all things Lasagne!


Gabi did something unusual last night, and actually stayed up later than me. That never happens! She says she was just in the mood to edit, and she probably put off sleep for as long as possible to do it. Well... it's had a positive effect on the film, as the last third of it is now completed.

Of course, it wasn't quite as easy as that. Gabi played what she edited to me this morning, and I pointed out any occurrences of sync issues, or any other problem that I observed as the viewer. Once she'd fixed them, I used the Audacity sound programme to remove all background noise - and hey presto, we had perfect sound and picture!

The last thing to do was add the all important credits - set to the 1970's song "Spirit in the Sky" by Dr and the Medics. Looks great!

Gabi is moving onto the first third of the film next, then lastly will finalise the middle section.

After that - we're officially done! At last!!

Semblance of Norm (Reconstructed)

I think I've spoken about this before? I want to re-edit my 2008 film, Semblance of Norm, as I was never truly happy with the final version. University dictated that it needed to be 3 and a half minutes long... and we were already over 10 minutes! So a lot of footage had to go, and in chopping that amount, we lost the entire narrative of the film.

Now, I want to recreate that original version. Trouble is, I can remember at the time of editing realising that we were missing a few shots. We would have gone back and reshot, but by that point we were aware of the amount of trimming needed, so never bothered. That leaves me with a problem... I'll overcome it by creating a still image 'storyboard' of those missing shots, to fill in the blanks.

Anyhoo, today I used Roxio to upload the first Mini DV tape of rushes. Tomorrow I'll upload the second, and then the editing can begin.

(This first DV tape is completely missing sound. I wonder if we used a boom mic on the day, and if the sound was saved elsewhere? Regardless - luckily! - it's not needed anyway for this project.)

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

April 15th, 2015

A filming day!

That Resolute Desk: Six of One

Today me and Gabi shot April's segment (we shoot one section a month; all twelve combined will add up and create a 30 minute short).

I directed and other than a basic sceniro, I hadn't written much of a script. I left it pretty much up to me and Gabi to make it up as we went along.

For this, we shot in Piccadilly Circus. A busy Piccadilly to boot, and I got awfully aware of people watching and thus camera shy too. As my character, Jarvis, chronicles his whole life on video he did the same here, too - recording himself and girlfriend Vicky with a selfie stick!

Selfie Stick: The Movie!

Turned out ok I think. Background noise is horrible, so we might need to ADR or... actually... leave it as it, but with subtitles. Yeah, I like that. More realistic.

I liked returning to Piccadilly to film. It featured in the original Resolute Desk short, too. (Despite being a sequel to that, this is actually a prequel to those Piccadilly scenes!)


Afterwards me and Gabi watched Lost River at Curzon Soho. Once it was dark we took the camera around the area and re shot the scenes featured in Lasagne's opening bit. Means it replaces what I shot in Soho last month - but I don't care. Those bits were never intended to stick in the final film.

Gabi is doing ADR with her main actor Robbie tomorrow and then... Well, she's well on the way to finishing this off. An end of April finish is still very likely!

Thursday, 9 April 2015

April 9th, 2015

Or "The Incredible Journey of Margot Shelly".


A filming day!

Today I shot the opening park sequences from Act 1, which bring to life Horatio approaching Margot Shelly then asking her out.

Look, proof!


It's peculiar having Margot committed to film at last - because she's spent the last 8 years solely inside my head. Pretty much since day dot of the project (in its "Self 2.0" and "The Fool" guises) she's existed within the narrative; the object of Horatio's desires, and ultimately the ignition for him to start writing again.

In this latest draft, her part has largely been trimmed down. The project has moved onto other ideas, and there simply wasn't the time nor the need to explore Margot's character any further. Interestingly though, I don't know if she will return for a sequence in Act 3. Part of me thinks she needs to, to help bring the story full circle - but then another bit of me wonders if Horatio would ever realistically go see her again, after she turns him down in today's sequence. Hmmm...

(The actress, Paulina, is willing to return for another block of filming later on if I need her to. I do have an interesting idea to have Margot reappear as a figment of Horatio's imagination at the end. We'll see).

Here's an extract from a very early draft script - possibly dated 2011? - when Margot was featured a lot more prominently:

MARGOT SHELLY (early-20s, tall, geeky) is stood inside the female toilets, before the mirror, delicately applying make-up to her face.

The toilet doors burst open and somebody, a guy - HORATIO MAGUIRE - rushes inside. He heads straight into a toilet cubicle, and slams it shut behind him.

Calmly, Margot shouts through, hearing Horatio throw up:

That'll be the drink then.

I wish it was.

Open up, I can help.

You what?

Open up.


Oh, but why not?

Look, I don't know you, and this-

He throws up again.

-Is absolutely revolting.

I'm working on fixing sound issues now, and overlaying some of Margot's dialogue onto a video of Horatio in close up. It's supposed to show his breakdown - from all the nasty things Margot calls him!

Should be done with the latest (rough) edit tomorrow. I'll post it then.

In the meantime, I'm planning the montage sequence - inviting lots of friends to be a part of it - and then... then... I only have the Manchester sequences to film, and Act 1 is in the bag!

Time to resume writing Act 2...

April 8th, 2015

My first post in almost a week. For two reasons:

1) I've been very busy at work. Blame Fast & Furious 7.

2) There's actually been very little updates on any of my projects since the last post.


I'm filming tomorrow. Gabi found a woman called Paulina at work, who's going to play the 'legendary' character or Margot Shelly. Through all my drafts, over many years, Margot has survived. She represents, I think, the sheer force of will I've employed to get Fellow to screen.

I've (obviously) then been looking through my script planning the shoot. I story boarded it a long time ago, and I'm very comfortable with the material. We shouldn't be there all day filming. I hope.

My mind has also turned to the montage sequence. I've started asking friends will they appear in it. I want my friend Jack, who moved away to Indonesia a long time ago now, to create a shot for the montage. We'll see if that comes off. In the meantime, I'm going to finally settle on what I want in the sequence, storyboard it and then film.

All in all, after tomorrow it leaves just the montage and the end section of Act 1 to film. I've completed two pages of Act 2.1 already - so will conclude that script by the end of the week, too.


Gabi's editing continues. No more chopped out (current length 13 minutes 50 seconds) but she's started to fix the sound,  and add music now. I complimented her the other day, by saying it's finally taking a proper shape. It compares very favourably to her last short film. In fact,  with a little push I think it might be better than that one even!


Director Kenneth is still looking for an actress to play the female lead. He's looking online but his leads have come up dry. I've put him into contact with Sacha Allari (another director friend, see below) to see if maybe we could use some of his friends.

Not On Your Belly

A script I wrote back in 2013. Sacha has had it since then. He says it's hus next project to complete... but I've been waiting 18 months for him to start work on it already!!!

That Resolute Desk: Six of One

If we hadn't organised Fellow filming tomorrow we would have shot the April segment of this instead.

Me and Gabi will improvise it; based off a sceniro of our characters meeting for a ten minute lunch break picnic in Piccadilly circus.

Shot on a selfie stick.

Next project

Still a way off, but my brain is alreadyvhaving some thoughts about what I do next. I might finally wrote Deborah (my attack on porn) or Eight Weeks Last Tuesday (my time travel break-up story) or maybe even Creep Forwards (a horror).

Depends what Gabi wants to do. I guess I'll be busy with Fellow for a long while. I might not even direct anything else thus year.

Friday, 3 April 2015

April 2nd, 2015

A long day and night counting stock, only redeemed by the following.


Gabi has been doing more editing. She's got the film down to 13 mins and 50 seconds.

Arriving home from work at 6am, I thought "screw sleep!" and watched her latest edit. It's really great! You can see the project is entering it's final stages now. More importantly, it's a film Gabi can be really proud of - and gives her short I Am A Vampire! A run for its money.

There's music added in, dotted into scenes both effectively but also responsible. Each bit of music perfectly suits it's accompanying scene.


I took this today. I do it every year: