Friday, May 13, 2011

On Set With Cinematographer Bob Scott

I was on-set yesterday visiting Bob Scott, the cinematographer who will be director of photography on our movie, "The Solomon Bunch," next month. We caught a few minutes here and there on breaks and lunch to discuss our plan. The rest of the time I observed the process.

I took a few behind the scenes picts with my Blackberry included here. The film is called, "Laughing At the Moon" and is being shot in Knoxville, Tennessee on about a five week schedule. The top two pictures are of a scene that was shot in the evening and as the sun disappeared, lights were added to supplement. I thought it was interesting that when the 12K (big light closest) was put up, it had very little diffusion. As the sun provided less and less light on each take, they actually added more diffusion to bring the level of the 12K down and brought the camera's iris up slightly. I assume this was so that they could still include some of the sky in the shot. If you instead added more light, then your sky would look darker and darker. At some point, you do have to abandon the sky and get shots that do not include it. The good thing is that they were able to get the master shots (wide shots) while the sky had light, then get their closeups without needing to show it after the sun was gone completely.

In the top shot, you see the First AC (assistant camera operator--also called the focus-puller) on the left, the Camera Operator on the dolly, and the Key Grip in the background looking on. The bottom shot is inside the tent that housed "video village," where the Director and Script Supervisor watch each shot as it happens. Here, the AD (assistant director) checks the frame for anything out-of-place. On the screen, you can see Bob Scott, the Cinematographer, explaining to the actor where exactly he would need to put his hands on the canvas to begin his abstract painting. Bob actually filled the role of Director as well in most cases, since the Writer/Director of the film is also the star and is on-screen in nearly all of the scenes.