For this assignment I have to make a short-film putting in to practice all that I have learned so far by creating a story with a good narrative.
This challenge is to include writing my own script and making it in to a film that should be no longer than 3 minutes for both pace and practicality for free publishing on Vimeo. This is certainly a challenge for me, as I haven’t been tasked to make up stories since my early school days and I also need to consider a story that can be reasonably easily made in to a film whilst still being entertaining.
My first task was to consider practical ideas for stories, this I did whilst on holiday and after much discussion with my wife (mostly on the beach) we came up with three ideas for stories.
The first idea was ‘The Decorator’ in which a painter decorator has just finished painting a room when the home owner returns and complains that the colour is not the same as agreed. After much argument, it is discovered that the lighting in the room is what is effecting the impression of the wrong hue. This was later rejected as although we plan to do some redecorating I didn’t want to put myself under pressure with time constraints with the additional work of preparing and painting a room room for the film to have any suggestion of truth.
Our second idea was called the £20 Note and I got the idea from an old comedy sketch made by Dave Allen back in the 70’s that I still recall seeing when I was a child. A man is walking down the road when he spies a £20 Note under a car’s wheel. Looking around to see that no one is watching he tries to remove it but it it too far under the wheel and impossible to recover. The sees a Cafe across the road and decides to wait in the cafe for the driver to return so he can grab the note as soon as the car goes. As he waits he has several anxious moments when other passers by come close to noticing the money. Finally the driver arrives gets straight in the car and drives away; but before the man can get up from his seat all the cafe’s customers jump up and race out of the restaurant to grab the money. The problem I faced with this story was that I was short of time and many friends and acquaintances are taking their holidays over the period I would need them; so I turned to our last idea that could easily be shot with minimal location issues and I could limit the cast to myself and my wife which resolves casting issues and time constraints.
The last idea that I adopted was ‘The dinner Date’ the male character in an attempt to make up with his girlfriend after an argument invites her to an intermit dinner only for it to go wrong when he leaves it unattended and burns it.
Having outlined the stories and dividing up the imagined scenes, I looked at their structure and them in the margins.
I then storyboarded my ideas.
I typed up my initial handwritten idea in to a screen-play.
My wife had just finished performing a play when I shot this movie and as there was very little dialogue to learn anyway, I cheated and printed out the dialogue for us both to be able to refer to whilst shooting the scene, placing it in our field of view whilst outside of the shot. This I felt worked as we didn’t stumble as we tried to recall our lines and pace and truth was maintained.
As the film work progressed I dropped the scene of Sarah arriving for the date and Sarah preparing for the date at her dressing table as I felt that I already had a scene of her at her dressing table during the telephone conversation and I felt it was not needed for the scene of the male character neglecting the cooking. I also felt that the arrival scene did not add anything to the narrative and only pushed the timeline beyond my 3 minute film duration target.