Friday, November 30, 2012

In the spur of the moment

The next day it was time for a first edit. Mind you, I intended to keep it simple and had no ambition with the picture (at the time). I figured a video-editor on the cellphone would suffice. After all, the camera did. Not a mistake I'll ever make again...

So I tried Lightworks. A pretty decent program as far as I could tell. Close but no cigar, I never got it to flow for me, and the fact that it didn't support H.264 meant conversion meant a limited photo quickly turned shitty photo. Humongous difference I'm afraid.
I haven't been working with editing for quite a while, at least not paid gigs, but to my great joy I actually found my old Premiere Pro 2, and work was finally up and running! Sure, It's downright bad at effects and processing (it's REALLY old!), but my ONLY intent with this is pretty straight edits with no processing whatsoever, and that it did great!

At first I aimed at 2 minutes. A good time for a showreel, and as I only had 10 minutes of material, that sounded pretty perfect. I think I went with this for about a day.
The story was about The Man being chased through a nightmarish stairway by an initially unseen entity that finally went medieval on him.
Going through the material, the story quickly evolved, and I realized there was simply way to much I could do with this simple yet effective material. The two minutes turned 15 (still only 10 minutes recorded though, with approximately 9 minutes usable stuff), and the possibly friendly though shady character The Companion appeared as a form of guide for the lost man. The evil entity evolved into a much more complex and sinister being, the original monster turned into it's tracking bloodhound, and the dark world got populated by fetches, spirits and both human and unearthly entities and anomalies.
After about a week I ditched the 15 minute format as well, and now I just say it'll be as long as it takes without getting tedious or wearisome. Possibly around 30 to 40 minutes long I guess, unless I'll find a way to make it a feature.
This time the story took a darker and more serious turn. Originally I had The Man pretty cocky and selfconscious  to begin with. That didn't really work as such, any try at humor got pretty weak and ruined the mood, so I went on with the confusion and despair instead, making him totally oblivious where he was and why. The light is now his worst enemy for numerous reasons, and every single monster and entity has a clear identity and agenda. The stairway is just one part of a large post-industrial kind of hell where nothing is what you think it is.

At this stage it is today, the movie is no longer a personal showcase, though it will of course be part of my showreel eventually. It's all intended as a good and entertaining horror-movie first and foremost.

It will still however have a concept I'll try my best to follow as far as possible, and that is:
- It'll be almost entirely improvised, save for a few ideas and notes I bring with me. This is a surreal horror movie, and I'm convinced the spur of the moment is a mighty fine part of this.
- It mustn't cost any money. I go with what I can find or already have, and invent what I need one way or another.
- If it can't be done in-camera, it's not worth doing at all. No CGI, just animatronics and physical effects.
- Never excuse myself hiding behind low (non existent) budget, the audience WILL compare this to cinema movies not caring about the production, so make disadvantaged into advantages.
- Make sure to make the most of what I got, or there is no point doing it the first place.
- You can't please the audience by the numbers, it's impossible. The only decisions acceptable concern whether or not the different possibilities makes the movie better or not. One must however understand the genre, of course.
- Be selective.

I am now actively looking for new locations, and are about to attach mainly voice-actors and vocal artists.


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