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  • Choices

    As I go through the footage given to me, I see at every turn this group (director/actors) took simple actions and made the worst choices possible.

    I realize that location/room size/layout all play a part in how you can shoot a scene. But, the general script should still be adhered to.

    Here's an example:

    In the script, an actress receives a call-back for the lead in a horror movie. She's going to be out of town the day of the call-back. But, she and the director work out a plan that she'll take the train to NJ (from NYC) and audition today.

    Here's the next scene:


    The printer runs off The Sides.

    Nancy puts on a prettier blouse. She looks in the mirror and removes it.

    Her cell RINGS. She answers.

    She puts on another blouse while speaking.

    Hello. Hi Mom. Iím sorry. Iím running out for a call-back. I... An audition Mom... Mom, I have to go. Iíll see you tomorrow 1:45 flight ten thirty nine. Bye Mom. I love you.

    She hangs up, grabs her sides and exits.

    So, she's made a date and she has to catch a train to NJ. "She's running out for a call-back."

    She's in a rush. She's getting ready.

    So, how do they shoot all this rushing? They have her sitting on the bed reading the sides. Of course her phone just happens to be sitting right next to her on the bed.

    Not only that, she's not even relaxing on the bed.

    Any way you cut it, it's all bad choices. These bad choices make a worthless scene.

    A well written script offers many choices on how a scene should play. No group will have the same vision. While each would create their own unique scene. If they're good, they will break down the script line by line. You should know what every character is thinking, what they should be doing and why, at any particular moment in the script. You then show that to your audience.

    In a well written script, every word means something.

    I swear, I don't think this group even looked at the script.

  • #2
    What would you tell them Unique, that could possibly help produce a better product - make better choices - etc.?


    • #3
      Know the character.
      Know the script.
      Know the meaning of every word.

      Example: If your character has been jogging outside for miles. They don't walk into the house looking refreshed. As stupid as that sounds, it happens. Because Monday you might shoot them jogging. On Tuesday you shoot the interiors with them entering the house. The script might just say "She enters". So, they'll shoot her entering, without thought to what came before.

      For an actor if you have any questions, ask. The director better have the answer.

      Last thing, if you're an actor/DP/grip or whatever. If you see something being shot that is just flat out wrong, say something. Maybe you'll be told to shut up and do your job. Maybe you'll be thanked for saving time and money. In my case, the seasons literally change from scene to scene. Now, I know everyone on the set knew we shot in winter, and they're the same people that took over. They took the script, rewrote it, and didn't bother worrying that exteriors needed to be shot like winter. Instead the actors are walking around in t-shirts and shorts.