Thursday, March 31, 2005

Set up, tear down, set up

It doesn't matter how many shoots I go on, it is always accompanied by the same amount of chaos and panic. Alarm sends the first shot of adrenaline at 6 am, then it's racing through rush hour traffic to a place I've never been before. I'll take a side road. Construction! I'm the one with the cameras. I arrive at the huge corporate complex wide-eyed, trying to find the crew - a needle in a haystack. There they are. Now, where's our contact person?

Scope the shoot site, then unload a van full of lights, cables, moniters, sandbags, tripods, audio gear, reflectors, cameras and refreshments. A three-camera shoot. Miles of cables. Sweating in the cold air. Director pacing nervously, looking at his watch, arguing with the director of photography. I'm adjusting the color temperature on the cameras, trying to get them to all match. The actors are sitting around, saying their lines out loud, adding to the chaos. Thirty minutes over. The director yells, "Five minutes." Sound man messes up my camera. Cameras won't sync up timecode. We'll use a clapper. Lay down 30 seconds of bars and tone. Talent in place; change the lighting one last time.

Hit record.

Record 30 seconds of dialogue. Take one, five, eight.

Tear down all the gear; moving to another location down the hall. Same thing all over again. Five more times today.


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