Friday, 10 February 2012

Jenny Ringo 2 - Pre-production Diary 5...

We are totally filming on Saturday! That's like really soon!!!

Here's what happened this week...

We rehearsed! The rehearsal actually happened!! For a moment it looked like it wasn't going to happen, but then it totally did!!!

The problem was the snow. The rehearsal was being held in Brighton, but only one of the actors was actually based there so with London and half of Sussex covered in snow I knew there might be a bit of an issue. One actor definitely couldn't make it and called to let me know, but I figured 3 out of 4 would be okay so I went ahead and got the train into Brighton. Then the Brighton-based actor called me from hospital following a snow-related accident. This was okay, if the other 2 could come along it could still be a productive day. Except both were coming from areas badly affected by snow and I hadn't heard from one of them at all, but I was mostly confident.

Actually I was standing outside the pub where we were to rehearse wondering how I was going to explain to the one actor who could definitely make it how it may have been a wasted journey. 

In the end three out of the four made it along and it really was a productive day. I have video evidence of this but that would be full of plot spoilers so here are some screen captures...

When we rehearsed for the first Jenny Ringo film I didn't quite know what it was for. I figured rehearsal was something actors liked doing but I wasn't quite sure whether it was necessary or not. It turned out to be very useful and it was a good chance for everyone to meet each other, but I spent a lot of the time working out how the scenes would be staged which was ultimately complete unnecessary. There's no point working out how to stage a scene in a location that's completely different to the one you will eventually use, plus everything changes when you start to set up the shots.

This time I knew what I wanted from the rehearsal and it felt much more essential (which was why I panicked slightly when I thought it might not go ahead). Primarily I wanted to make sure everyone knew what they were supposed to be doing, which is impossible to do in four hours but I think we at least got a better idea of how things are going to work. Then we went through a few of the scenes in more depth and started to work on the performances and characters a bit more. To be honest it felt like we had only just scratched the surface. Suddenly it felt like we needed a week of rehearsals. As a director I don't think I'm experienced enough to know what I would do with that week just yet, but I am starting to see the advantages and I can't believe anyone would go into a project like this without any rehearsal at all (which is exactly how I would have done it once upon a time).

There is a huge plot point that is directly related to this which I can't reveal, but it was one of the main things we spent the rehearsal trying to get right. And I'm not sure we totally got there but we did come close and we did come up with a couple of ways to help us get there again when we're shooting. At some point in the future this will all make sense, I promise.

Anyway, it went well, it was great to get some of the old team back together and to work with new people, I'm really excited now!

Tonight Pete and Charlotte came over and we made our flat into Jenny and Gavin's flat, like this...

Which only makes sense if I point out that our flat doesn't normally look like that. Not quite anyway.

I also saw some test footage of the most awesome practical effect in the history of cinema. 

Anyway, given that we're going to be shooting non-stop from Saturday I may not be able to update the blog as often as I would like to. However, I will endeavour to post photos and updates on our facebook page so check it out if you haven't done so already.
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