Big ones are all planning. Months of location scouting, casting calls, finding crew... there's a lot of beg borrow and stealing going on. Little shoots are different. Sometimes there is, again, a lot of begging, borrowing, and stealing, and sometimes you get canceled by a hurricane.
That's not a metaphor.
I trekked down to Hull Sunday afternoon to shoot a thirty second short. It's somewhere between an experimental video and a PSA--it's called Smoking Kills, so you can probably piece together the content. The man in charge (I swear, multi-hat movie people need a job title to cover all the stuff they/we do) is a professional photographer by trade, trying to ply said trade in a new format.
We were supposed to shoot the weekend Hurricane Irene came tearing through, but we woke up that morning to torrential downpours and the shoot was to be out in Hull, MA. I said, were we shooting in Medford, I'd go for it, but driving out to a peninsula during a hurricane felt the opposite of a good idea to me.
Of course, the storm faded, the rain stopped, and we could have safely filmed that weekend, but as I drove out to Hull this weekend, over various bridges and by many bodies of water close to the road, I was glad we canceled the first shoot. It would have been a rough ride down.
Anyway. The actual shoot. It's hard to know what to expect with a new director or crew, so the anxiety is always pretty high--as, I imagine, it is on the other side, not knowing if you're going to end up with a prima donna actor with the personality of a poodle.
The photographer-director turned out to be gracious, charming, and incredibly skilled (as was his assistant camera--yes, a crew of two). We did a quick voiceover and approximately six shots total for the thirty second spot. I smoked half a pack of Camels. Sidebar: there is nothing legally obtainable as immediately addicting, I think, than cigarettes. The director offered me the rest of the pack at the end of the shoot and I regretted turning him down the entire drive home.
Anyway. It was a fantastic shoot. I hope to work with them again soon. And I'm really curious to see how the footage came out based on how nicely the screen captures did: