Tuesday, February 26, 2008


What a great photo of the mighty Huggy Bear live on stage. I gave a photo of another band, the Young Knives, to Sue, the casting director, today as a guide to what we were looking for.

This was good timing as we started casting today. We saw 18 different people for various roles, and with varied success. More tomorrow and a few call backs from today to try out for different roles. While the casting was it's usual fascinating process, we didn't turn up anyone who just 'was' the role. We did get that yesterday, however, with an actress we had to meet. She was absolutely perfect for the role, though I don't know if she'll take it or not. She has other possible commitments coming up, and I don't know how much we persuaded her. While it was a good, and fun, meeting, I'd run over from a studio record (it being my last day at work), so spent the first half hour being a little less than clear about everything as my head was still full of studio nonsense. Still, I have my fingers crossed. I thinkn finding some of the other cast may persuade her, but we'll see.

Start date is now April 14th. I'm hoping that's where it stays. It seems just long enough not to freak me out completely, and yet near enough that we have to get cracking.

Also, my leaving present from work was a copy of Filmaking for Dummies. I've already found three things in it that I hadn't really considered. I may have to re-cover it in something less damning and have it by me on set.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Slowy but surely

Still having trouble getting a tied down shoot date. This is the problem with having an extremely talented crew, they just keep getting work. Our main problem is with the DoP, Mike Eley, who last year shot a project for HBO called Grey Gardens. It was a huge shoot, very expensive, and now there's talk of it getting a theatrical release. All good stuff, apart from the fact they have scheduled the grade for the 8th to 18th April. Mike isn't sure if he's going to berequired for the whole thing, but he'll definitely be needed for some of it, so we're now looking at two possible start dates, the 14th or 21st of April. 14th is nice in that it means we would finish at pretty much the start of Cannes, so we could have a trailer ready with everything we shot available, even possibly a rough cut. On the other hand, the 21st looks more realistic, and gives us another (precious) week of pre-production. We should know for certain this week.

There's also some cast problems, with mutterings from one members agent. Fingers crossed we can sort this out today, but I'm sure we're in for loads of this kind of thing. Hopefully our Locations Manager and Sound Recordist will also be sorted out today.

Meanwhile we've got more excellent bands coming on board for the soundtrack. I'm doing a new draft of the script over the next two weeks and hope to make the soundtrack finalised around then. Hopefully this version will introduce a little more jeopardy for the main characters, and also I want to turn the location itself into a character. Yes, sunny Kilburn, your time has come.

Have a meeting this week with another company who may come on baord, and Alan Harris is back from his shoot in NZ so will meet up with him to hear horror stories and tips, which should be invaluable.

But most importantly this is my penultimate Monday at work. This time next week will be my last day in the office, and then it's into 100% pre-production and time to get properly terrified. Still, everytime I wonder what on earth I'm doing I just look at the schedule here and remember I don't have to worry about any of the shoots coming up, and somehow that makes everything seem just dandy.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Crewing up

We now have a very nice 1st AD on board, and by Friday we'll know if we have a very nice Line Producer on board. If we haven't then on Monday we phone the other very nice Line Producer.

Have a few issues over what payment was agreed with some members of crew, but am sure that will be sorted out this week as well, then it's time to start getting more casting sessions arranged as well as sorting out contracts for actors already signed up.

And finally, had an email out of the blue from an ex (very) high up in the music business person wanting to know what stage we're at and have we got all the money, so am now waiting for a meeting with them. The sooner we can tie off the rest of the cash the happier I'll be.

Film is due to be announced in Berlin this week by sales agent. This won't alter anything, apart from make me more nervous, so am really looking forward to that. Have taken to reminding myself it's a small film, and that seems to do the trick.

And finally, we've hammered the budget down so that we can now shoot for four weeks not three, as everyone (DoP excepted) said it would a) kill us and b) kill us. Much happier with four weeks, it means only 3.75 pages a day.

Am trying not to look at what 3.75 pages is in reality.