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#1 Michael Kernan

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Posted 04 November 2006 - 10:58 PM

Hello all, my schedule is finally settling down a bit and I want to shoot something. I was wondering if there was a good website/place to find a bunch of basic, beginner scripts to get a feel for the trade. I'll be doing the camera work on a semi-old sony handicam, but it's really just to get some experience, so it won't matter much. I'll be doing the casting, directing, camera work, lighting, and editing and such, I just need the script and later, actors. (Actors will be easy to come by)

Also, if there is already a topic on this, please just send it my way.



Thank you,
Michael Kernan
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#2 Bob Hayes

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Posted 05 November 2006 - 01:27 AM

Hello all, my schedule is finally settling down a bit and I want to shoot something. I was wondering if there was a good website/place to find a bunch of basic, beginner scripts to get a feel for the trade. I'll be doing the camera work on a semi-old sony handicam, but it's really just to get some experience, so it won't matter much. I'll be doing the casting, directing, camera work, lighting, and editing and such, I just need the script and later, actors. (Actors will be easy to come by)

Also, if there is already a topic on this, please just send it my way.
Thank you,
Michael Kernan


If you are going to the trouble of doing everything you say than you should do your best to do it for real. That would mean a real script. Sometimes you can hook up with actors who want to do demo pieces. Often time?s short stories offer good ideas. An anthology of horror stories might have a simple story in one location that would be a good starter piece.
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#3 James Steven Beverly

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Posted 05 November 2006 - 04:05 AM

I just need the script and later, actors. (Actors will be easy to come by)
Michael Kernan

Actors yes, GOOD actors, not so much. B)
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#4 Michael Kernan

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Posted 05 November 2006 - 06:45 PM

I'm really just going to do everything basic. I just want to see if this is what I want to put money and time into, so it's just going to be a test run.


Getting good actors will not be a problemo, I'm in the drama club here and I can grab a few actors from there. Plus, I know many actors from around the state that wouldn't mind helping out.


Like I said, all I need is just a test script. XP

Edit: Wow, I sound really cocky! SORRY! All I want out of this is to get some experience in the field. After this shoot, I will pursue a real script and such.

Edited by Michael Kernan, 05 November 2006 - 06:49 PM.

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#5 Robert Hughes

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Posted 05 November 2006 - 07:03 PM

There are several web sites with scripts from classic movies; perhaps you could attempt a scene from one of the films you admire to see if you can match the feel, or add your own personal touch.
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#6 kelly tippett

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Posted 05 November 2006 - 08:08 PM

zoetrope.com
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#7 Michael Kernan

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Posted 05 November 2006 - 08:51 PM

Great idea! I will probably end up doing something along those lines. Thanks to both of you!
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#8 James Steven Beverly

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Posted 05 November 2006 - 11:23 PM

Getting good actors will not be a problemo.


Well, we'll see when you post your work which I am looking forward to seeing. Great film actors have a sublety and an on-screen chrisma that often eludes even the best of stage actors. I would like to see what you are capible of doing in any case, though. I like cocky people if they have the chops to back it up. Let's see what you got, kid. B)
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#9 Paul Bruening

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Posted 05 November 2006 - 11:55 PM

Hello Michael,

James is right. Screen acting is a whole different animal from stage acting. We have a motto at Easton Pictures: "Never hire theater people!" The reason is, their acting experience is for the stage. Their stuff has to be seen, heard and interpreted from as much as a couple hundred feet away (back rows). Screen acting is EXTREMELY INTIMATE. The camera is right in the actor's face. Everything they do is fully seen. The presentation not only needs to be subtle because of the intimacy of camera placement, but, film acting is more of a cueing device than acting. The actor ever-so-slightly indicates the emotion, therefore allowing the veiwer the priveledge of "feeling" that emotion. The problem with stage actors is that they want to "feel" that emotion and thereby steal that moment from the veiwer. That pisses the veiwer off... alot. Nothing will kill your work surer than a single moment of "ham".

I suggest you watch About Schmit for a fine example of screen acting. You know everything the director wants YOU to feel because Jack knows exactly how much to give YOU so that YOU feel and thereby, OWN the emotions.

Knock 'em dead, Dude,

Paul
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#10 Hal Smith

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Posted 06 November 2006 - 12:50 AM

Getting good actors will not be a problemo, I'm in the drama club here and I can grab a few actors from there. Plus, I know many actors from around the state that wouldn't mind helping out.

Look for actors that act with their eyes. For a primer, check out movies like "The Magnificent Seven". That cast was so good that I think the movie could have be made without dialogue - just picture and music.
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#11 Michael Kernan

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Posted 06 November 2006 - 12:36 PM

Yes, I understand what all of you are saying. This is, truthfully, going to be a crappy film with crappy high school actors. I will probably end up not even using some of the "better" actors, mainly because I just want this to be a fun learning experience. Don't expect anything good. :D
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#12 James Steven Beverly

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Posted 06 November 2006 - 01:31 PM

Well with an attitude like that, how can you miss :blink: . Every film you start is going to be the greatest peice of cinema ever put on screen otherwise what's the point? Don't defeat yourself before you even roll the camera. One of the funest movies for the cast and crew to make that eas ever done was "Cannonball Run 11". Those guys had a blast making it, unfortunately the audience did have nearly as much fun watching it, which is BAD because it was suppose to be a comedy. Take your art seriously or don't do it at all because an audience is going to have to sit through it and you OWE them your best effort, besides making movies is a HELL of a lot of work so why put all that effort into a BAD one? Do the absolute best you can and let us see what you've done. We'll decide as an audience if it's high art of a piece of tripe and we'll give you honest tips on how you might improve your next one. Give it your BEST shot, kid and at the very least you'll earn a little respect. B)
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#13 Michael Kernan

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Posted 06 November 2006 - 02:36 PM

Haha, alright.


What I'm trying to say is that I'm not making this to be seen and taken seriously. It's really just to try out some stuff and screw around with friends. That's not to say I won't attempt to do a good job on it, it's just that nobody should expect much. ^__^



I'm only a sophmore in high school. I still have a bit of time to screw around in life. :lol:
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#14 David Winn

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Posted 06 November 2006 - 03:37 PM

Hello Michael,

James is right. Screen acting is a whole different animal from stage acting. We have a motto at Easton Pictures: "Never hire theater people!" The reason is, their acting experience is for the stage. Their stuff has to be seen, heard and interpreted from as much as a couple hundred feet away (back rows). Screen acting is EXTREMELY INTIMATE. The camera is right in the actor's face. Everything they do is fully seen. The presentation not only needs to be subtle because of the intimacy of camera placement, but, film acting is more of a cueing device than acting. The actor ever-so-slightly indicates the emotion, therefore allowing the veiwer the priveledge of "feeling" that emotion. The problem with stage actors is that they want to "feel" that emotion and thereby steal that moment from the veiwer. That pisses the veiwer off... alot. Nothing will kill your work surer than a single moment of "ham".

I suggest you watch About Schmit for a fine example of screen acting. You know everything the director wants YOU to feel because Jack knows exactly how much to give YOU so that YOU feel and thereby, OWN the emotions.

Knock 'em dead, Dude,

Paul






I think you may be cutting yourself off from a formidable wealth of talent by excluding "theatre people". Sure tv or film acting requires subtlety but there are plenty of actors who have huge stage experience and create big performances on stage but can achieve an "intimacy" in performance before a camera. Talented actors are often versatile in that way.

David
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#15 Michael Kernan

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Posted 06 November 2006 - 04:55 PM

I must agree with david, even though I have very little experience in the field. Just from what I know from my friends, the majority of them would like to be on film rather than stay on theatre. When they perform monologues, which are much more intimate, they can perform them well.

To each it's own.
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#16 Michael Collier

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Posted 06 November 2006 - 06:49 PM

Post your request for short scripts online. My last film I posted on IMDB and a few writers sites and got some awsome submissions (over 200!) I was offering money for the scripts, but I am sure you will find lots of scripts if all you can offer is credit/differed. Just make sure to write up a contract to that extent. That way if you get to festival and do well, nobody is trying to sue you because they didn't expect you to make money/exposure from it.

Try shooting S8 as well, if you want it to be good, and you can't afford a better video camera (you'd need at least a $27,000 camera to get decent results, 4,000 for medocre-low level results) and you probably can't afford 16mm, but an s8 camera would be cheap, and the film inexpensive.

Goodluck!
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#17 Michael Kernan

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Posted 06 November 2006 - 07:01 PM

Alrighty, will do.



I'm not planning on buying a camera anytime soon, I'm just gonna use my crappy sony handicam I got a few years back for a couple hundred bucks. It's got semi-decent quality and it will be good enough for what I will be doing for a while.
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#18 Michael Collier

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Posted 06 November 2006 - 10:05 PM

A handy cam will do for now, just to get the hang of the workflow, but don't expect to produce anything you want to show people 3 years down the road (when video cameras are 73 generations more advanced than a handycam). I have still (and especially today) regret not doing the S8 thing, I stuck to video too long since as I was learning, digital cams and editing software kept up with my learning curve. Agood s8 camera will give you a unique look that very few early-students have, and may give you more respect for knowing what your doing, rather than tweeking until it looks good in the monitor. It also gets you used to the knowledgebase that is required when you want to advance, and keeps you honest (I know some of my early movies had WAY too much coverage, just so I could 'find the movie in post'. Over time I learned to shoot what I need and very little else for saftey, but it would have been easier if that was my focus from the begining.)

At least if you shoot video, keep track of your shooting ratio and work on reducing it as time goes by (once you get to a 10:1 you can stop, but try and increase your takes at that point, and reduce your coverage.)
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#19 James Steven Beverly

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Posted 07 November 2006 - 03:56 AM

Try shooting S8 as well, if you want it to be good, and you can't afford a better video camera (you'd need at least a $27,000 camera to get decent results, 4,000 for medocre-low level results)


Dude they shot Tadpole and 28 days later on $5000 XL-1s! Tadpole starred Sigorney Weaver and got a full theatrical release, 28 days later made about a bazillion dollars and there are hundreds of other flms made for even less. You do NOT need a 27K camera to shoot a decient movie and the arrogant, ellitist attitude that you do is abserd. Any mini DV camera will work great especially for a beginning filmmaker who's still in highschool. Go with a mini DV and computer software editing. Go to film when you have more money and understand the basics. Work on telling a good story visually. Shoot with editing in mnd so you have te shots you need to tell that story when the shooting is done. Use basic simple lighting ans set-ups and work on pulling the best preformances out of your actors that you can. Keep the film short 5 to 15 minutes and don't quit until it's done, then you will see what it is to be a filmmaker.

Edited by James Steven Beverly, 07 November 2006 - 03:57 AM.

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#20 Tim Terner

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Posted 07 November 2006 - 05:28 AM

Yes, amazing to think that 28 Days Later with a budget of $8m was shot on the XL1S. Another example is Open Water, which grossed $30m, shot on prosumer cameras
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