EPK Day 4 (Proxy Production Experience-July 29, 2012)
Location, location, location! One of the beautiful things about shooting an independent film in a small town like Richmond, Indiana is that you are able to get a slew of fabulous locations, and most of them you can get for free, simply because people are so excited to be involved in the moviemaking process in any way, especially in a town where media production is not a focus. On this day we found ourselves in a couple of different, very cool locations.
Our first location was the exterior of a department store-Elder Beerman (which we would return to later in the day to shoot interiors at, once the store closed). We had a few different elements to contend with; one, the changing pattern of the sunlight due to cloud coverage, or lack thereof, two, a quick sequence with director Zack Parker’s three year old son, Xavier, and three several steadicam setups. Camera rolled and our lead actors Alexia Rasmussen and Alexa Havins nailed each take and every setup-they are truly creative pros. Next, the cast and crew pulled together to get Xavier’s moment in one take-with Alexa taking special care of the youngster, and Zack and his wife Laura at the ready, it went off without a hitch and will truly be an emotional cinematic moment in PROXY.
Our second location was at a fabulous coffee shop called 5th Street Bagel. This scene was between two of our leads, Alexa and Alexia. With Zack Parker’s direction and Jim TImperman’s beautiful lighting and cinematography, the team explored each of the moments of dialogue finding a richness in the subtext of the scene and capturing the fabulous look and production value of the location.
Next, we moved back to the department store Elder Beerman to grab our interior shots. We were greeted by a large crowd of background extras who were eager to be a part of the filmmaking process. It’s really cool to see how excited people get-some of the background extras traveled upwards of four hours to work for free-amazing! Once again, we had several steadicam shots and, a fair amount of coverage to grab, and we still had to pick up our scene from the previous day at another location. Needless to say, it was a big day. The cast and crew continued to be focused and achieved everything they set out to accomplish-excellent shots, fabulous performances, and an incredible location. In LA, this day would have been something that only a higher budget production would have been able to achieve, but Director/Producer Zack Parker and his team are skilled at getting high production value at a low cost.
Our final location was back at the house to pick up the scene from the previous day. Due to the context of the scene, it was a closed set. I had wanted to get an interview with lead actress Kristina Klebe and, even though it had been a long day, we both felt that this night was the night to do it. So, while the cast and crew worked on their scene, I enlisted the help of PROXY Production Designer Sean Richard Budde to setup my interview space. He had noticed that I was not happy with any of the locations in the house, as far as aesthetic for the interview, and he mentioned he had this splattered paint backdrop and asked if I wanted to see it. I quickly said yes! It was fabulous. He helped me set it up, and he even stood in so that I could set the lighting and the shot in order for Kristina to jump in and do the interview. The main production wrapped for the day, Kristina and I jaunted down to my setup in the basement, we got the interview in as well as a small web piece and that was it! It was a fulfilling day and I was really happy with the footage for the interview!