Trish and Harold's Weblog

News, information, and random thoughts from the busy lives of Trish Egan and Harold Phillips.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Code Is In The Can - Replay

Hey folks

Well, I slept for a good 11 hours or so (sorry, CTC folks who had to be up shooting at 7am at the bowling alley). I've got a cup of strong coffee in my Kaladi Brothers cup. The wi-fi is up and I'm sitting in my back yard swing with the laptop... so I think I'm ready to relate the story of yesterday's shoot for Crackin' The Code.

Honestly, the day went amazingly well! I got to Marcella Laash's house at around 8 am (I wasn't technically called until 10, but breakfast was being served and it was a good opportunity to get into the groove with Jon Ashley Hall and Shawn Cates, my scene partners). By 9:00 the crew was already working on their first shot, and we were off and running.

The first scene we shot will actually be my last scene in the film... because Jon had to be unshaven in it, though, we shot it first so he could be clean-shaven the rest of the day. There were some complicated shots to get (including a dolly shot that our DP, the amazing Galvin Collins, achieved with a tripod and a wheelchair), but we managed to get it all in the can by two pm. Jon's performance in that scene had us all "crackin' up," let me tell you.

After a lunch break we moved out to Marcella's driveway where Shawn proceeded to wash Marcella's car for the next four hours or so... unfortunately, the scene called for Jon, Shawn and I to be in the sun the entire time. Luckily, our fabulous make-up woman Sabrina (I had a habit of calling her Samantha, so that became our little joke... as the day progressed, I called her every girl's name starting with S that I could remember) kept us covered with sun block. It was definitely one of those "racing the sun" kind of scenes... by the time the crew got set up to film my close-ups, the sun had gone behind a tall pine tree, and we had to cheat the scene down the drive way by a couple of feet. Unfortunately, between the neighborhood noises, the hours in the sun, and the other distractions I'm afraid my close-up shots weren't as good as I would have liked them. Still, Steve seemed to be satisfied with what he got and we moved inside.

The last scene we shot (technically my second in the film) is a pretty emotional one with a lot of business. Part of my action involved washing dishes, so we pulled out the dishes from breakfast (which included some amazing country gravy made by our producer - and Steve's Wife - Gia) and I went to town. We had to race the sun again in this scene; technically, the scene is supposed to take place at dawn, and the sun was headed from dusk to night. We managed to get the exterior and through-the-window shots needed before the sun went down, and then it was on to the meat of the scene in the kitchen. At one point in the scene, I throw a wash rag into a pot of dish-water, causing quite a splash; thankfully Gia was on-scene with Marcella's hair drier to dry my wardrobe off between shots. I was pretty happy with my work in that scene, though glad it was the last scene of the day - I was worn out afterward.

All-in-all, I'm very happy with the way the day went. Sure, it was a long day... but I feel like Steve got some good stuff on film (P-2 card, technically...), and I certainly learned a few things:

  • Galvin Collins and Chris Davis (two Screaming Inside guys I've worked with before) really are "the Sh*t." They come up with amazing solutions when issues present themselves on set... and they both keep their cool when the pressure's on. Seriously, Galvin is the very definition of "unflappable." If you ever get the chance to work with them, take it!
  • Marcella Laash is as amazingly gracious as she is gorgeous... she and her husband Jeffrey were so kind to let us take over their house for an all day shoot. And not only that, she's very kind when you break something of hers (thank god for EBay... you really can find anything there...)
  • Steve Coker and Gia Barker are one hell of a writer/director and producer team! They work exceptionally well together (probably a good thing, with them being married and all...) and keep their humor when things inevitably go wrong on the set. Plus, Gia's an amazing cook and Steve's just a downright funny guy.
  • Patti Adkins RULES as a script supervisor/ associate producer. She's gold - again, any chance you get to work with her, take it.

Well, ok. I guess I really knew all that stuff already... I just thought it was worth re-stating.

Happy Sunday folks... I'll keep you posted as the film goes through post-production. Steve has this insane idea that it's going to be ready by the first part of September (he's angling to send it out for festival consideration by then...) I'm pretty excited to hear what people think of it.