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Old December 9th, 2005, 05:11 PM   #1
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assurance for a shoot on Wednesday

I've really into film making for couple of years now, and have always been doing projects here and there, some by myself, and others with a few friends.

Now i've come across a film festival going on in my school board, and i've gathered up a crew to make a music video as professional as possible.

-7 Actors
-Director of Photography
-2 Producers

I've choose music video so there would be no sound in this project, because this adds an entire new dimension to the filming process, and makes it much more difficult to keep professional.

I have written a script for this music video (Hotel California) that is almost entirely set in an empty high school at night. I did this because i know I can make my images look so much better when they can be entirely artificial light controlled. I have a band that will be playing on the gym stage, each member lit up with blue spotlights.

-I have been able to find myself 3 miniDV camera (consumer) plus a fourth lower grade camera for behind the scenes shots.
-I have access to most objects in an entire school, and therefore using overhead projector carts on hard floors, as camera dollies.
-School has 15-feet scafolding on wheels.
-Three fog machines for cool look behind band on stage
-Drama Department theatre lights and portable stands
-Set of 500W x 2 constuction lights

-Some of my video will just be cool shots of the band playing Hotel California. They are supposed to be a 'ghost' band, so each member needs to be a bright blue colour. I will be shooting the band both in the library and on the gym stage.

-I also am shooting a more romantic scene in the middle of the gym. A fancy table with flowers, wine glasses...etc and a couple on a date, with the rest of the gym dark. I would like to have them lit up really well, not sure how to do this yet.

-Shots of someone walking through empty dark hallways. This will be probably be a camera following character on dolly, behind and in front. I'm going to need some kind of 'moonlight' on this character, plus i want to just be able to make out the lockers in the hallway.

So this is it. I have an entire school at use for an entire night, and a crew of about 10 people, with 3 camera. I have to make something professional, but I'm already panicking about Wednesday and how so many things could go wrong.

I would just love some suggestions/what-not-to-dos/lighitng advice.... to make the best final product i can with what i have. thanks
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Old December 9th, 2005, 07:34 PM   #2
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Get a wheelchair from the nurse. Those projector carts suck as dollies, wheels too small.

Better do a light test to see if you have enough (when you keep them off-camera). Those worklights don't focus very far away.

Will your festival care that you are using uncleared music?

Don't forget to white balance often, and have all cameras white balance to same object in same conditions....

You may want an on-cam light for the BTS camera....

Good Luck Have fun.
You are either growing or dying.
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Old December 10th, 2005, 06:30 AM   #3
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Sounds like you're doing a pretty good job on pre-production. A smooth shot depends on thinking ahead, and anticipating the problems likely to arise.

Just to reiterate what Bob mentioned. You realize that since you don't have the rights to this music, the video you produce is virtually a dead-end project? You can't send it to any festivals, or post it on the web. You must have the rights to any music you synch in order to sell or distribute or enter film festivals.

If you show it at your school festival, as part of your film assignement, you are FAIRLY safe... but like I said.... that will be virtually the only venue where you can screen it.
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Old December 10th, 2005, 09:38 AM   #4
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I was told by the teacher overseeing the board film festival that liscensed music shouldn't matter because I'm not making any money off this film.

I don't plan to ever make any money off this film, just want people to see it and be impressed. I always thought you need to pay for your song only if you plan to make any money off the film. Otherwise, I'll just go any by the Eagles CD, and then it's no different than playing the CD in front of a bunch of people.

Can't I go and post this video on a site like student , where people can just view your movie for free and give it a review...i've seen other music video on that site with big-band songs

Any what do you have to do to actually get a song like that licensed? It is really expensive, even if the video is non-profit?
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Old December 10th, 2005, 07:17 PM   #5
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Sorry I have answered this so many times.

Short version is, no you can't legally use it without a license, even if not-for-profit. Getting a license is usually expensive (several thousand $$ on up) and time consuming. Sometimes not. Your teacher is 100% wrong. The more exposure your work has, the more likely you are to get caught by copyright owner and sued. Whether a website will allow it or not is up to the website. Most will not allow it if you read their upload agreement.

For details, try a search here on "copyright", "music licenses", "using music" or others. It is a big subject and can take several hors to really get a grip on it. It took me a few months.

Reality is that you can probably get away with it (like shoplifting), up to the point that a website will not allow it and stops you from showing your work..

Good Luck
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Old December 12th, 2005, 08:33 AM   #6
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Just a quick tip on multi-cam shots.

If you are going to be using all 3 cameras at once. An inexpensive way of getting all cameras in 'sync' is to simply clap in full view of all 3 cameras, trust me, it'll save you an age in editing.

Licensing is a bitch when it comes to music. Luckily I operate within a Students Union who will generally pay for the 'rights'

P.S. Back-lighting with mini-parcans (AKA Birdies) on the floor with an almost indigo gel looks fantastic for ghosts.
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