This year me and a team from Animal Logic set out to make a short film for the 48 hour film festival. For those that don’t know what the 48 hr film fest is, basically you are given 48 hours to write, film and edit (and do vfx in our case) a 7 min short film. The way that this controlled is by them providing you with a unique genre on the night the competition begins, followed by a universal prop, line of dialogue and character that must be featured at some point through out the film, similar to that of Tropfest with there feature item.
12 hours without sleep…
So with little ability to prepare we attended the opening night, where we signed in and were presented with a hat. The hat was filled with folded slips of paper that each had a unique genre on it, these genres ranges from musical to silent film to western.
Luckily we were fortunate enough to get a relatively linear genre, that being suspense/thriller. As soon as we were given this we immediately shot out of the pub hosting the event and drove back to our production office (being one of our houses) from here we started brain storming, still awaiting a text from the festival about which prop, character and line of dialogue we needed to include.
After about half an hour of brainstorming we got the text..
>> – The prop being: mobile phone (easy)
>> – the line of dialogue being “the world as we know it will end” (could be worse)
>> – and the character being Neil Armstrong (rather difficult)
So with this in mind we came up with a few ideas including Neil Armstrong never actually landing on the moon, alien invasions coming after earth whilst a female protagonist desperately try’s to lose her virginity and a thriller set in a house on the moon.
However after much demise we ended up deciding on it being about Neil Armstrong stealing the moon… With a shrink ray . It was shortly after this our first bump in the road occurred when our Director and Director of Photography pulled out due to unforeseen circumstances. Luckily we managed to rope together another director fit for the job and promoted the camera operator to DoP.
By the time we finished writing the first draft it was about 4am on Saturday where we signed it off and decided to move on. I ventured on not being able to sleep and did some location scouting around Newtown for the scenes.
25 hours without sleep…
So the Saturday began with a small breakfast and coffee and not long after we set on our way to start shooting. On set I was looking out for the continuity of the production as Script Supervisor, making sure elements such as props, actors actions and camera moves remained consistent throughout, however with such little sleep under my belt, let’s just say I wasn’t doing the best job.
The rest of shooting went relatively smoothly considering the circumstances, however we did finish up about 3 hours behind schedule at 12am.
49 hours without sleep…
So as shooting finished we got straight into the visual effects part of the film which always takes at least twice as long as shooting so as you can imagine we really had to push hard. Whilst me and a team of four compositors and one 3D artist (also being the director) tackled the vfx we had our editor bashing out the cut upstairs. Ofcourse by this stage most of us were zombies often micro sleeping at the computer. At one stage after having and energy drink followed by a coffee I projectile vomited everywhere, which does sound bad but to be honest woke me up more then any drink could.
To add to the stress as we started to get to the finish line our musician bailed on us and as a result we didn’t end up getting the soundtrack until about 10 minuets prior to its deadline (Which is why the soundtrack is a bit dodgy at parts). On top of this a lot of the shots we were doing vfx on weren’t finished until the dead line so it was lucky we made it at all.
THE END: SUNDAY 7PM
68 hours without sleep…
So with the film uploaded and finished about 30 mins late of the deadline, we all finally get to sleep after 68 hours of hell/heaven.
The Judgement – 28/10/12
So about a month after submission of our film Lunatic we all attended the 48 Hour Festival screenings which ran for a good 8 hours showing every film entered. The age groups of the entrees ranged from 13 year olds to very professional 30 and 40 year old which really gave the festival a great vibe.
So finally here is our film that was uploaded for the festival:
I have listed some of the better films here for you to check out…
The above film won the award for best film, however I disagree with this judgment and personally believe this one should have been the winner
So as the award ceremony commenced we suspected that as none of the other films really featured that many visual effects we would get the award for best sfx for sure. However to our surprise we got the award for Best Director and the award for best Graphics (which I assume they intended as best vfx). So all in all did a lot better then expected
Any way let me know your thoughts!