I’ve realized I’ve spent a lot of my time blogging about food, and not enough about my productions! So I’m going to back track a bit here, to the month of April, when Nadeem and I each produced an episode of Michael Baser’s Film School.
We started with casting, and did everything from call sheets, location scouting, production meetings, craft services, prop shopping, set (and James) decorating, costuming, and then just making sure everything was going smooth throughout the day. In one word : a BLAST. We got to work with a great crew of VFS students and alumni and got our first taste of working on a hot set! Wouldn’t trade it for the world.
In this post you’ll hear all about “Drake’s Worst Nightmare” written by VFS Writing Graduate, Melanie Kaklamanis, so let’s get started then!
DAY 1 : Myles’s Apartment
We got up and at ‘er on a saturday morning in April, meeting at Myles’ house where we were shooting “Drake, Jordan and Paul’s apartment”. The cast and crew were all on time — a good start, and we got right down to business. We set up the living room, bedroom, and bathroom with props and equipment and started by shooting our first and last scenes, where Drake gets ready for his interview at the burger joint, followed by him waking up from his nightmare.
Having very little room at Myles’ place, we turned the bedroom into our greenroom / wardrobe / bedroom scene, and the kitchen into make-up / craft services / garbage can, but we made do with what we had, and it turned out great!
Here we have the lovely Aulenna Robinson (recently nominated for a VFS Impact Award) as the angry wife, telling Alexandre Maravilla (Drake) where to go! We had a blast with Aulenna, covering her in baby food from head to toe and all over her clothes! Please note, no children were harmed in this production, only the creepy VFS doll. (Also in the photo above : the episode’s director Jimi Cuell, DOP Jay MacMillan and sound designer Oriana Cope.)
Isabella Carlin and Tim Austin played Jordan and Paul, and did an awesome job and had great chemistry
At the end of the day we said goodbye to Isabella, Aulenna and Tim who wrapped for the shoot, and I went home and had a good night’s sleep, ready to go for day 2!
DAY 2 : BonChaz Bakery / VFS Basement
** A big thank you to Michael and BonChaz bakery for letting us use your space on a Sunday morning, greatly appreciated! **
We started our second day slightly later than the first, with an almost entirely new cast, and two new locations. We welcomed actors Cameron Hunt, Augustin Zapuhlih, and writers Chris Newman, Melanie Kaklamanis and Cody Bisson who made their on-screen debuts as extras.
Our DOPs Jay and Cullen getting their shots ready as the actors rehearse their dialogue. They played double duty and switched roles day by day, giving each a chance to try something new.
We finished the day by moving to our campus at 198, and set up in the basement of the school, welcoming Maria-Jose Velazquez to the cast, as Drake’s employee.
We had a bit of trouble lighting the scene, and masking the sounds of the various school vending machines, but with a bit of creative placement, and a lot of sound cancelling blankets, we were ready to go.
The highlight for me : Executive producer, Michael Baser joining us on set both days. Getting the chance to work with someone who worked on Full House was a dream come true. Watching Full House when I was 4 years old, was when I decided I had to move to California and become a movie star taking the world by storm ; and although I’ve scaled my dreams back a bit, I know that Hollywood is still where I want to be.
So yes that was my experience with producing “my episode” of Film School, and I had a great time! I made lots of great friends that’ll last last a lifetime, and if ever I need to cast or crew something, I’ve got a great bunch to choose from! So as soon as Film School becomes available on YouTube I’ll post a link, thanks for readin’ ya’ll, and stay tuned shortly for Film School – The Curse of the Mojo written by Richard Brandon Manus!