Saturday, June 10, 2006

Final Preparations: ("Scene 0.5" Part III)

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The Oath: Nearing completion on Arnaud Rousseau's Chambers. Any part of the room that will be visible to the camera must pass as the interior of the replicated Early 19th Century French Chateau pictured below.
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Principal photography of The Oath actually took place at Le Petite Chateau deLuxe in Mermentau, LA, and "Scene 0.5" must appear to have been shot there as well even though it will actually be shot here:
The actual exterior of the room/window where we are shooting the new scene. Foam paneling, applied on the inside, covers a third of the window as well as its modern, metallic features.
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One of my favorite things about filmmaking is creating illusions. We only decorated the parts of the room that will be seen. Storyboards, animatics, and test Shots allowed us to determine precisely what that will be.
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Creating another illusion. David Attebury, who plays the film's protagonist, Julien Desormeau, assists production designer, Beth Doster. David has regrown his hair, complete with mutton chops, to recreate the appearance he had during principal photography. Incidentally, we attracted the attention of the neighbors...and the mosquitos.
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The final product achieved with duct-tape and fishing-line. The purpose of these branches is two-fold: One, it obviously is intended to create the illusion that there is a tree outside the window. Two, it serves as a fail-safe distraction. Across the street, and visible from an un-altered window, is another modern, suburban home. Should one's eyes be determined to look past David's silhouette (doubtful), and the thick layers of translucent, colored gel (highly doubtful), the eyes will stop with the branches. Even if they don't, by that time the neighboring house is indiscernible. Though it was my idea, I was still shocked and delighted to return to "the set" and see just how well it worked and achieved it's purpose. I was unable to take a photograph, but tomorrow I intend to post stills from the shoot.
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