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Old October 27th, 2010, 11:45 AM   #1
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Cereal Killer


I will be honest, when the theme was announced I nearly threw in the towel then. Every idea I had for a mask seemed cliche and demeaning to myself. I had an idea for one scene and that's it.

Coincidentally I was out of town for the duration of the contest only getting back into town on Sunday. I had mentioned the contest to my girlfriend and she convinced me to at least put something together. So after brainstorming my one idea, we had a loose idea of what to do. We called some friends and starting shooting at 9pm Sunday night.

We shot with no script, no storyboard, a basic idea and just winged it. The only scene we had pined down prior was the ending from where the girl leaves the store and witnesses the killing followed by the killer walking towards her and she doesn't move. Yes the killer is the same guy that we saw in the first scene.

Total filming ran 3 hours using 3 locations. Edited in less then 2 hours and submitted by 2am (midnight gmt). This ended up being a 5 hour project. For it being done in such short time I am happy with the result. Of course if I spent more time on this it would have been a whole lot better and some color correcting and retakes would have really helped this project.

Only the milk dropping clip was done with a panasonic consumer cam, the rest was done with the Canon 7D with a 28-135 lens and 8mm fish eye. For audio we used a Sony UWP lavaliere plugged directly into the 7D. I will never do that again. I am extremely unhappy with the audio. Only the opening scene did we use a light, all other shots were done using natural lighting.
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Old October 27th, 2010, 11:58 AM   #2
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Hey Clint, congrats on getting the project done despite it looking all but impossible, timewise. That alone is an inspiration. I sympathise entirely not having time for a script or storyboard and winging it with just an idea in your head. That was my case too -- only you managed that in a mere five hours. I don't know anyone who has put together a fictional short in five hours. Kudos. I probably would have said "too hard," but now I see you managed, next time I'll see the project through regardless, too.

Given the limitations you had, it would be churlish to mention the stuff you already said (lighting and need for more takes). One or two things, though, the "blood" didn't have the right colour. Guess you didn't have the time to correct it in post. Also, I would have thought that the girl would have run at the end, not stand there.

On the 7D's sound -- I hear you. I'm hating the auto gain with a passion. I use offboard sound when I can, but it's a pain to sync (even with PluralEyes), and when you're on a tight, tight deadline like this, cutting corners is what you have to do.

So, congrats again on getting the project done in conditions that would make (and did make!) many others balk.

Last edited by Marc Burleigh; October 27th, 2010 at 03:05 PM.
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Old October 27th, 2010, 12:22 PM   #3
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Hey

I've just watched "Cereal Killer" and first thing I want to say is that I enjoyed the fridge shot, you've stayed away from the already overused cliché :)

Storyline wise, with all due respect I did not managed to grasp it, at least not in theme's sense. Might I be slow today or something.

As a thought, having 7D, perhaps you could had avail of the nifty-fifty (50mm f1.8) lens which would changed the look dramatically for a very small price. Space seemed to not be a problem, especially in the parking (given the crop sensor on 7D you would had to shot from a bit of distance).

Please take my comments in a constructive manner.
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Old October 27th, 2010, 12:51 PM   #4
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Hi Clint,

I am really impressed with what you put together in such a short amount of time! And thank you for going ahead with it when it would have been easier to let it go. Tell your girlfriend I appreciate her urging you to shoot something very much. :)

What's killing me is the gorgeous images you got with zero extra lighting besides the scene you mentioned. Here I fumble and mess around with it and still have trouble, then you go out and shoot with what's there and it's nailed. That is so cool. I'd buy a 7D right now except that I probably wouldn't be able to keep the shots in focus. You do a great job with it!
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Old October 27th, 2010, 02:16 PM   #5
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I'm seriously, seriously impressed you managed to put that together in five hours. Well done!
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Old October 27th, 2010, 03:22 PM   #6
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Clint, you worked wonders in such a short time. That girlfriend is one you better appreciate. I agree with what the others said except I don't agree with the "blood color" comment. We're dealing with outdoor lighting, which all to often is sodium vapor and there is no telling how colors such as blood are going to appear.

The one caution I have to express is concerning the gun. Looked like a real Glock to me and unless that was a non firing replica that looked that real, I have a big problem with putting a real firearm up to someone's head or pointing one at someone. If it was a replica, well done.

I've seen a demonstration that shows how actors can avoid pointing even a blank firing prop at a person and yet through creative camera angle make it look like that is exactly what is happening. But even on a commercial motion picture set there is a firearms expert present whose job it is to check that firearm many times before it is used in a scene.

One time when they did not want to pay that guy was when Brandon Lee was fatally shot on the set of "The Crow". So with no one to check it they used the wrong kind of blank and the "wad" proved fatal.

But your short was very well done.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lorinda Norton View Post
Hi Clint,

What's killing me is the gorgeous images you got with zero extra lighting besides the scene you mentioned. Here I fumble and mess around with it and still have trouble, then you go out and shoot with what's there and it's nailed. That is so cool. I'd buy a 7D right now except that I probably wouldn't be able to keep the shots in focus. You do a great job with it!
Kind of underscores my suggestion in my comments on your feedback thread. Even the T2i (has almost all of the 7D video functionality) is amazing on location. While I probably should have, I used no supplemental lighting in my submission and on location worked with what was there.

Shutter at 1/60 (unless in PAL country then set 1/50), aperture where you want it, and ISO to AUTO only very briefly so you can see what the camera wants to set for exposure. Then set the ISO to what the camera wants and start adjusting that up or down while you evaluate the image on the LCD. Set the exposure for the visual effect you want and work with the lens focusing ring in MF mode.

I don't think you'd have any trouble.
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Old October 27th, 2010, 04:46 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marc Burleigh View Post
One or two things, though, the "blood" didn't have the right colour. Guess you didn't have the time to correct it in post. Also, I would have thought that the girl would have run at the end, not stand there.
The Blood color was whatever red/blue/white paint we had laying around from past projects and I think we came pretty close. My makeup artist/gf did whipped that up in 10mins. In addition I think there is more issue with the light we were shooting under. I choose that light due to its color being greenish. I think that altered the look of the color of the blood.

And as for the girl not running that was part of the story. Why did she not run? was she scared or was she in on it? Maybe they killed someone on their first date and he wanted to kill again already! lol

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mugurel Dragusin View Post
I've just watched "Cereal Killer" and first thing I want to say is that I enjoyed the fridge shot, you've stayed away from the already overused cliché :)

As a thought, having 7D, perhaps you could had avail of the nifty-fifty (50mm f1.8) lens which would changed the look dramatically for a very small price. Space seemed to not be a problem, especially in the parking (given the crop sensor on 7D you would had to shot from a bit of distance).

Please take my comments in a constructive manner.
The only reason I did not use the cliche "inside fridge shot" is only because I did not want my 7d in the fridge...

I am still learning the different lenses and will look into this nifty fifty! Thanks

and I always take constructive criticism well. I do have problem when people just negitive criticize just to be negitive.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lorinda Norton View Post
Hi Clint,

I am really impressed with what you put together in such a short amount of time! And thank you for going ahead with it when it would have been easier to let it go. Tell your girlfriend I appreciate her urging you to shoot something very much. :)

What's killing me is the gorgeous images you got with zero extra lighting besides the scene you mentioned. Here I fumble and mess around with it and still have trouble, then you go out and shoot with what's there and it's nailed. That is so cool. I'd buy a 7D right now except that I probably wouldn't be able to keep the shots in focus. You do a great job with it!
I struggled with the focus on the 7d for quite some time after I bought it. I am now starting to get a reign on my camera.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bruce Foreman View Post
The one caution I have to express is concerning the gun. Looked like a real Glock to me and unless that was a non firing replica that looked that real, I have a big problem with putting a real firearm up to someone's head or pointing one at someone. If it was a replica, well done.

I've seen a demonstration that shows how actors can avoid pointing even a blank firing prop at a person and yet through creative camera angle make it look like that is exactly what is happening. But even on a commercial motion picture set there is a firearms expert present whose job it is to check that firearm many times before it is used in a scene.

One time when they did not want to pay that guy was when Brandon Lee was fatally shot on the set of "The Crow". So with no one to check it they used the wrong kind of blank and the "wad" proved fatal.

But your short was very well done.
You have a keen eye my friend. It was a real weapon and that is why the side of the gas station was not filmed at the side of the gas station.

I am all too aware of the lesson of Brandon Lee. We took UPMOST care handling the weapon. There was NO ammunition in the gun, the barrell was completely empty, it was not cocked and the trigger was already compressed. So there was no chance for a misfire. On top of that, the owner of the weapon was the actor whom had the gun held up to his head. I would not have asked anyone else to do so. I do appreciate your concern. Im surprised you didnt mention anything about my explosion on my zombie trailer ;) .....now THAT was dangerous.
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Old October 27th, 2010, 06:18 PM   #8
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That 1.8 is a really nice lens but you do have to rely on autofocue as the wheel is awful- just got one for my dad for his birthday and it was an absolute steal!
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Old October 28th, 2010, 12:17 PM   #9
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I liked the shooting aftermath on your actor's face, also his stature when approaching the female.
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Old October 28th, 2010, 08:28 PM   #10
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Since I am so late to these threads I feel like everyone has already said a lot of what I'd like to. It is quite an accomplishment to produce this short start to finish in 5 hours. The best part of making things to me is when you can look back and watch something that didn't exist before you started, and I wonder if that feels even better as the time it took to make it is less and less.

I did laugh out loud when the girl comes home from her date and goes STRAIGHT to the Frosted Flakes, and wants them so badly that she even goes on a late night milk run!

All in all, great work for 5 hours total. That's actually still unbelievable.
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