Friday, September 04, 2009

Showroomdoche #1

I occasionally get up enough vim and verve to make a film. This is one such occasion:

Usually I'd just post the film up, but since I've gotten used to somewhat long blog entries, I'll just stick a couple of production tidbits and thanks in here.

This was made as part of the Showroomdoche, S.Y. Project, an attempt to make a series of separate yet interconnected short films about, in the most round about way, working in a cinema. Specifically, The Showroom cinema in Sheffield, where I am currently employed.

The idea for this one came about quickly. The story of the video is, to a certain extent, based on reality, and pretty much as soon as a customer told me that they were ''going to get [me] if it wasn't any good'', I had the idea fully formed and started filming it the following week.

At this point, I'd like to give some serious thanks to Arron Bendelow, who plays 'Man' in the film, and has a well-deserved co-writing credit for all the stuff he made up on the fly. He completely got on board with the idea from the off and ad-libbed for a solid 15 minutes straight to camera, with me giving somewhat weak and enfeebled answers in return*. With very little direction on my part he ran with it and came up with a lot of hilarious stuff which, sadly, couldn't make it into the film without seriously unbalancing it and making it too long. It's rare (for me, at least) to have a surfeit of quality in a film so having to cut it down to the funniest and most essential parts was very difficult.

Chris Glover deserves thanks as well since he has nearly as many credits on this one as I do. Thanks for the help, Chris, and sorry that you were replaced as the boom operator by a collection of metal poles. Nothing personal, they just ask for less money.

Thanks should also go to Michaela Livingstone who, despite having nothing to do with the production, did offer up some very sage advice about the sound of the first cut, and pointed out that the original version didn't have an ending** and that, for my money, makes this worthy of being a TwelveEyes Production.

Thanks also to Emily Morgan and Kate Trodden, who were the first people outside of the crew to see the film and whose positive responses have somewhat alleviated my sense that we've all just been so narcissistic about the whole thing that we didn't realise that we'd made a shit film.

We may still have made a shit film, but a few kind words at the final hurdle certainly give the ego a much needed massage.

Anyway, I hope you enjoyed the film. More should follow in the coming weeks which should be better in a lot of ways. Primarily because they actually have scripts, which tends to make these things easier and funnier.

Oh, and I'm getting to that Pedro Almodovar series, but other things are getting in the way. It's nice to be busy.

*Which is why so little of my performance is used. I cringed a good deal watching the footage back, yet I couldn't very well edit around myself and still have something that was even vaguely coherent.

**Oh, and a big 'Thank you' to my Mum, who was the originator of the punchline.