Friday, March 09, 2007

If you don't like it, kiss this

Forget Generation X, we're Generation Multitask. I sit here typing on my laptop while I listen to my Ipod uploading pictures from my digital camera and talking on my cell phone while I transfer files with my flash drive as my friend watches The View (hence the need for my Ipod) on her satellite TV and fast forwards through commercials with her DVR remote.

Then I'm going to put it all away and read a book on film making. Printed on actual paper.

Isn't that kind of beautiful?

Last night I saw Spamalot. A disjointed script with some story problems, but funny. Oh so funny. But not funny enough to warrant a standing ovation. Unfortunately, in this day and age we see a French man playing a flute with his ass as cause for a standing cheer, so John O'Hurley running around with a coconut is considered a masterpiece worthy of hurrahs and bravos. Of course, many of those standing folk decided that a baseball cap and an ugly green ripped up T-Shirt with the John Deer logo on it was proper attire for a night at the theater.

After another pass at the script (thanks go to Scott, who inspired our latest changes) Partner and I feel like we're really ready now. It's time to get down to the nitty gritty. Before, Partner liked the script and was happy to give me advice on directing from his frigid perch in the Cold North Lands, but now he's so in love with his own words that he wants to fly back here to shoot it as one of the actors. He has loads of experience so it's a natural fit.

That actually makes me a bit nervous. He's directed short films before and I haven't, and he paid a bazillion film school dollars to learn what I have attempted to pick up from books and websites for considerably less. Yet I get to stand over him and make suggestions on which way to grab his movie girlfriend's breast as he sticks his tongue down her throat.

Actually, I'm beginning to think that may be why he wants the role. He gets me ordering him to make out with another girl. That has to be somebody's fantasy.

Once again, anyone with any suggestions on lessons you've learned from shooting your own films is completely welcome to give my green ass some advice.

I have a feeling I'm about to work said ass off. Good thing there's some photographic evidence of where it once was.


  1. I think that anyone prepared to order a boyfriend to grope another woman has probably learned pretty much everything she needs.

    Go get 'em.

  2. Just to clarify, Partner is not my boyfriend. But thst doesn't make it any less weird.

  3. What did you people write, a porno? Hehehe...

    Well, a number of thoughts come to mind actually. Hopefully, this scene isn't just about the sex. A proper sex scene is always about something else, like say, a character's conflicted emotions, the discovery of behavorial thing in a character that we haven't seen before, how something else going on in the head of one of the partners is interfering with his/her ability to be intimate, etc, etc. So before it starts and before everyone gets into their awkward positions, there would usually be a discussion with the actors on what that scene is really ABOUT. And thus, it isn't just about getting banged, it's also ACTING. And there should be lots of talk on what the shot is and exactly what they're going to do in that shot (verbalized explicitly) so that there's no confusion once everyone gets into place. And in between takes, it doesn't hurt to ask the girl if she's okay, if she's comfortable, if she needs anything, etc, so she knows that YOU have her best interest in mind. Nobody ever asks the male actor that, because, well, nobody cares. He SHOULD be happy. I mean, look at what he's doing.

    Hope that helps.



  4. Good thoughts, good thoughts.

    As a matter of fact, the main story in the script is about one guy's insecurities, and that includes his inability to perform sexually. So the subtext should be easy for me to explain.

  5. Anonymous9:40 AM

    "we see a French man playing a flute with his ass as cause for a standing cheer"... was that at Paris or Caesar's?

  6. Hey Emily!

    It's cool you are going to direct a movie! What I learned from shooting a movie is that a lot of times big part of your crew and cast has to wait until things are set up etc. So what you need is that you make sure everyone knows what they neeed to do and are prepared. So you will keep the waiting time to a minimum and you probably need to understand that the waiting actors can be bored very fast.

    You need to be the commander, the motivator, the best friend, the rock!

    Oh, food is important. Always have food and water on the set. Nothing is more annoying than a bunch of hungry workers! Hehe!

    Well, the essential stuff you know from books etc.

    - Storyboard
    - Shooting schedule
    - Rehearsal

    Always be confident. Better shoot a little more then too little. Otherwise it will be a pain in the editing room.

    Plan on to eventually have to reshoot a scene or two (one additional day). Could come in handy.

    Don't be afraid to use all kinds of tricks to get the desired effect.

    Also tell the actors to just continue acting no matter what happens until you say cut or stop. Some unexpected thins always happen and sometimes they are worth gold.


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