I spent most of yesterday afternoon filming scenes for a short film for a buddy of mine at UArts in Philly. He's working on his senior thesis film, and he's hired me to play the writer struggling to finish the scene he needs to finish. The film involves my character trying to write a play about his ex-girlfriend, and then he finds himself entering and exiting the scenes himself. Yesterday was our scheduled day to shoot all the scenes of me by myself, sitting at my desk and struggling to write. It was a new experience for me, as I was required to act all by myself. In every film I've done up until this point, it was always about scenes between characters, but these scenes were all just me. I had to find the line to walk between effective and over-the-top, when I had nothing else to play off of. Fortunately, I'm good friends with Lesley, who is playing my ex-girlfriend, so it wasn't too much work to create a relationship and a history between us. I didn't have her on the set, but I had two pictures of her on my prop desk. I had to make the connection with those pictures, which was at first a little challenging, but got easier as we kept working.
The director, director of photography, and the art director were all on the set making it all go smoothly, and this third picture is a shot of them all crowded around the computer in the room reviewing the footage from the work before lunch. Nick, the DP, had a very fancy camera just like the one that Rob uses, and he also had a homemade dolly and track of a different design. Instead of using PVC pipes, as ours does, Nick's uses pieces of rolled up tubing, which makes the whole contraption much more portable. The whole shoot went though about 8 scenes, some of which were complicated and some of which we rather simple. But we were all focused and on-task with our work, and the whole thing went very smoothly. I don't think we finished quite as quickly as the director was hoping, but it was a pretty solid day of work overall. We finished it up by recording all of my voice-overs in the film. After spending the first several hours of the day acting with my fingers and my eyes, I finished out the day by acting with just my voice. It was a pretty varied day for me, and I certainly took a little bit of time to warm up into the work. That's actually something that I should work on in the future, since professionals need to do their own warm-ups on their own time so they are ready to start work right away when they get to the set. There is at least another day of shooting for me on this project, and I think it might actually be two days of work. Having seen what the shots look like, I'm very excited to see how it all comes together.