25, 2000 - There goes the crew!
we were SUPPOSED to do a bunch of small scenes and pick-up shots for this indie film.
Johnny has some stomach virus or something and has been blowing
chunks all week. He's out. I decided to shoot anything that
didn't involve him. Geoff
had a partched throat thing goin', so he wasn't in too good
of a shape. Juliet had to
cancel the night before because she was sick and totally out
of it. Since she was gone, I had to tell Robin
not to show up because I needed both of them at the same time.
We were all set-up to do Scenes 25 and 28, where Geoff and John
Horrigan berate Mr. Disgusting
from the other side of the office. Geoff didn't have the correct
shirt, so that blew that scene. The only thing I could do were
the few scene between Dan
and Phil. Ended up shooting
an additional close up of Phil while Dan tries to pawn off Mr.
Disgustings computer to the others in the office. (Without them
there.) Then did the remaining scenes of Dan in his office.
I think I've finally gotten to the bottom of my focus problems
that have been occasionally hounding me. I've been noticing
that certain shots have been out of focus. (Some more than others.)
I've been assuming it's my fault, or maybe the actor has leaned
out of the plane of focus. Since I've been using a zoom lens,
the standard way of focusing is to zoom all the way into your
subject, focus, then zoom back to your final position. (This
is how it's done in video anyways.) A bunch of my shots looked
like the focus was about 6-12 inches closer to the camera than
I had set it. I didn't notice this because the only way to properly
frame my shots was to look at the video tap, and the little
B&W camera isn't too sharp on it's own.
When I got my footage
back from Cinepost, I had a long shot of Sparky and Dan discussing
the computer sale from Geoff and Horrigans point of view, the
focus had moved a good 4-5 feet towards the camera! That footage
was totally unusable. At this point I KNEW that it wasn't me,
because I had carefully set the focus while zoomed in. (But
had zoomed back to my final position.) After testing the lens
with a focus chart, I found that the focus changes while you
zoom in or out. Back focus problem. DAMN IT.
[Note to self: If
I buy another camera from a guy on the Interstate, not only
should I check for scratches, frame hashmark alignment, but
back focus problems too!]
This is starting
to make sense, who ever did the Super 16 conversion of the camera
never bothered to check the alignment of the frame to what was
being actually photographed, but the original Eclair lens mount
was replaced with a standard Arri mount. They also didn't check
to see if the lenses will focus properly, they probably threw
the mod on there and never really checked these things closely.
Oh well, it's still a good deal even if I have to get these
things looked at. (Which I didn't in the first place, my fault.)
And another thing, I've noticed that my zoom lens has some sort
of faint aberration in the corner. The thing works, but is sort've
noticeable when you pan. It looks like I should replace the
lens with something better. (Good lenses START at around 2-3
April 1, 2000 -
Assorted pickup shots.
got Geoff and Horrigan together (with the correct shirts) to
do their sportscaster voices while watching Dan buy Mr. Disgustings
computer. They had rewritten the whole spiel from what I had
originally in the script. It sounded fine by me, I really didn't
have any strong jokes in there, I just needed something for
them to say so they could do their announcer voice schtick.
Horrigan has announced many sporting events in the past, and
Geoff has a natural play by play voice, along with the usual
tone that corporations just love to hear on their tapes.
Juliet and Robin
improvised a scene where John
is over hearing them talk about what they would love to have
a guy do to them. This whole scene is motivation for John to
do all these things at once (on a beach) to Irene. Originally
I had John moaning that his relationship with Irene wasn't really
working out (AGAIN). I then had Amanda and Janet give him suggestions
on what to do to win a girls heart, but Juliet pointed out that
Amanda would never offer this advice to John since she saw what
Irene did with Rob on a videotape that was shown at her Party
earlier in this indie film. (Irene is revealed to be having sex with
did a quick shot of everyone following the camera cable back
to Robs desk. (Hopefully that is in focus.) I'm pretty sure
I've solved the focus problem (for now) buy making everyone
hold a focus chart up to their face while I NOT zoom in. I can't
just measure the distance from the lens to my subject (as a
"professional" camera person would do with a professional rig)
because the numbers on the lens itself are no where near their
proper settings. (Because of the back focus problem.)
Redid a few sequences
of Phil, Horrigan and Robin talking over a cubicle wall to Geoff
and John. Phil threatens to bring his "Rubber Ass" tomorrow.
Apparently there weren't enough people here today for the proper
emotional impact. :-P
Cast in elevator
Cast in deli
Deli table eating
Eric directing 60
Horrigan & Robin
Phil & Robin
Phil & Robin order
Johnny & Robin
April 2, 2000 -
Phil's "Rubber Ass"
shot the opening office sequence today, where Todd (John
Horrigan) starts up a conversation about what comes first
in a relationship, saying "I Love You", or farting in front
of that special person for the first time. I wrote this sequence
to quickly establish all all the characters in this office.
We then reshot a portion of Sparky's
Mr. Disgusting sequence at Amanda's desk. (Certain shots were
out of focus.) We then redid the close ups on Darby
in 2 scenes because I fucked up camera placement originally.
(Broke the 360 degree rule big time. I sensed something was
wrong, but didn't have enough time to think it through in my
head when I was shooting it.) We finished up with the "payoff"
shot between Irene and Rob which is seen at the end of the movie
in the big presentation to Mr. Williams. Those guys were laughing
their heads off while doing it, but I only needed a few moments
This day was a real
bitch and it practically kicked my ass. All clocks were "sprung
ahead" for the springtime change over, so that make up for the
lost hour, I had call time an hour later. (Pretty clever huh?)
Problem was, a couple people were late getting there, so we
didn't even start shooting till around 2 pm. I wanted to get
out of there at a reasonable hour because my sound crew (Emery
and Brandon) had to go to school the next day, so I was
rushing the whole day so I could get everything I needed so
no one would have to come back to the location.
We also had to deal
with Phil's "Rubber Ass." Phil
had mentioned that he bought the domain name "www.rubberass.com"
during our post rehearsal
beer on March 15th. He said that he initially bought this
prosthesis device of a woman's lower midsection as a joke. He
wanted to show pictures of him going out on dates with it, (him
with it at a restaurant table, on a ferris wheel, etc.) then
posting them on this website, all for a good laugh. We (naively)
thought it was going to be a rubber ASS, something you would
display underwear with in a department store, not a RUBBER VAGINA.
(Normally NOT used by gynecologists to practise, say, a speculum
insertion. It's most likely used for OTHER THINGS.) Apparently
in a twinge of bashfulness, he went out and bought a pair of
woman's panties to cover a small aspect of it. We all agreed
that a website dedicated to this prosthesis device WOULD be
funny to take a glimpse at (if only momentarily), but who would
expend the necessary energy to BUILD such a site?
Back rubs 4 all
Cast w. rubass
Dan & Phil Scene 7
Eric directs AGAIN
Juliet reacts to rubass
Phils secret kiss
Phil presents rubass
Rubass on computer
Sparky on guitar
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