Planning Assignment 4

This assignment is all about creative use of sound in film-making, to employ sound to create a more realistic and 3D illusion to a film.  This task is to include a number of different locations that can also be represented by different sounds to match and compliment the various locations.  A short-story was needed; so a script of some description was required in order to make sense of the different shots and locations for a logical narrative.  For me this is the hardest part of my coursework, finding the idea for a script.  I am limited in time expense and reliable people to help moreover, I want to keep  the filming simple; so I don’t want to use locations that require permission to use as this often adds additional limits to when I can film which is has a knock-on-effect with availability of my cast members.  Therefore I had to think very carefully about a story that could plausibly include locations easy to access for filming.  Another consideration is that apart from the one or two actors, I have no other assistants that can watch over my equipment; so I am nervous of taking all my camera and sound equipment to locations that are busy with people for the threat of damage or loss.  This would only add to the pressures of film making if I need to keep one eye on my equipment whilst trying to also concentrate on shooting the scenes.

Perhaps I lack a vivid imagination but finding a sensible idea is the hardest thing and I can spend a long time puzzling over it, making notes of the assignment criteria and considering suitable locations.

 

During this period I also read two more books published by AVA, Basics Film-making, ‘Producing’ and ‘Screenwriting’ to try to be more informed for this new task.  Both helped, the ‘Producing’ book confirmed my thoughts on limitations to my script; but also informed me for future and more ambitious projects and the ‘Screenwriting’ book was invaluable for learning how to correctly layout and present a screenplay.

I had a block, I just couldn’t think of anything; so to help me free up my mind I started to write anything.  My first story that I put to paper is a true story of an experience my father had when he was serving in the RAF during his time doing his National Service in the early 1950’s.

I then wrote a couple of true stories about myself.

I also looked for inspiration elsewhere and I pulled down an old suitcase from our attic that is full of old photographs of my wife’s family going back before the first world war and to my surprise and delite NEGATIVES.

My first photo was a rather glamorous image of my wife’s aunt’s mother taken in the 1930’s.

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My second photo was of Sarah’s aunt taken I would suggest just after the second world war, mid-forties.

The last image was of my wife’s aunt’s father taken in the 1930’s.  I did not finish writing a story for this image.

This helped me with fresh ideas and I took another look at the criteria.

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My first real idea was a comedy based upon my wife’s inability to park a car and I roughly scribbled bullet-points for a screenplay.

I began to think about the locations.

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However, my wife pointed out that it was too similar to my first short-film for assignment 1.  However, looking at the location list, I thought of the movie ‘The Conversation’.  It begins with a couple under surveillance in the middle of a public square.  Why not do something similar in a park?

I decided to make it a spy theme and to use a couple of indoor locations a couple of outdoor locations and an interior of a car location.  This gave me five potential different locations for sound.  Keeping my story simple, I decided to start with a shower scene for a  bathroom soundscape, moving on to a kitchen, to a car both external and internal as one of the two protagonists travels to meet the other.  Final scene in the park for a meeting to collect a document, which is secretly photographed by a hidden and unseen photographer.

This idea was both simple and easy to cast and shoot, the point of this exercise is to demonstrate my learning in the use of sound, which I believe this simple narrative can demonstrate.


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