Feature film shot on Canon XL2 - The Shadow Asset trailer is released at DVinfo.net

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Old March 22nd, 2007, 02:50 AM   #1
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Feature film shot on Canon XL2 - The Shadow Asset trailer is released

Tonight we debut our official release trailer for our feature film "The Shadow Asset"

I shot this film entirely on a Canon XL2. We had almost no budget. Most of the budget went to buying the XL2.

I have posted the trailer on our website. Check it out!

http://www.theshadowasset.com/
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Old March 22nd, 2007, 06:38 AM   #2
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Nice web promo.
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Old March 22nd, 2007, 01:57 PM   #3
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Impressive cast lineup...even though you had severy typos in your film titles. (missing apostophe and what not...)

Lotus is always spiffy...and I love the "Bond Girl" moment in the pool :) I absolutely love cars, so I was all over this trailer. I spotted the Viper...and is that an Acura NSX? Old mustang? And I feel foolish not knowing the last one...Deloreon? I think?

Impressive vehicular lineup, and I must say, I'm impressed with the production value itself. I enjoyed the trailer and look forward to seeing the finished product. The trailer had an edgy look to it, and the only somewhat argument I could find is that your "tough girls" just look too sweet.

I know, they're trying to be deceptively sweet, but filmaking is about reality veiled by deception, and the girls just look too "real" and not "film real"

But I'm really impressed. And did I mention I love the cars. Had to ask my roomate about that Mercedes, and I quote: "It's an old S-class, but you can't tell because it's got custom wheels."

Well, obviously you CAN tell... *is annoyed*

Good job :) Be sure to share the finished product with us :)
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Old March 22nd, 2007, 04:10 PM   #4
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And I feel foolish not knowing the last one...Deloreon? I think?
It totally was a Delorean (yay back to the future!). Wes, you gotta share some of your secrets to landing hot chicks, cool locations and sweet cars. Much props on the trailer

Jay
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Old March 22nd, 2007, 11:35 PM   #5
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Well the secret for getting the beautiful women is to have something cool to show them so they know your serious about the project. I made a teaser trailer (which is on my website too in the downloads section) before I started casting my film. When I did a casting call everyone had seen the trailer and wanted to be in on the project. If they think your going to make them look really cool and sexy the women just show up.

To get locations it is mostly just putting the word out there to everyone you know. A friend of a friend, is the usual scenario. Most people love the idea of being involved in a movie somehow. The pool scene is one of the locations I am most proud of finding. I needed a mansion with a really nice pool. I work at an automotive parts warehouse as my day job, so I just told everyone at work I what I needed and within an hour one of the sales guys comes to me and says he is friends with this guy who has a 3 million dollar mansion and he wold love to see his house in the movie. That afternoon I went to see the house and the guy was actually trying to convince me to use his house, like I was going to turn him down.

The cars are the same situation as the locations. Just let people know what you are doing and what you are looking for. You will find people just offering their stuff up.
The Delorean was kind of an accident. One of my actors owns that car. He showed up on set one day driving it, when I saw it I came running up to him and told he that we are going to use his car in our next scene. He ws excited.
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Old April 1st, 2007, 11:40 AM   #6
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hi wes great work on the trailer i really liked it

you mention you filmed the project on an XL2 with almost no budget...

did you simply use a stock XL2 ?
if you could give an inside on to what all you had to come up with for gear to make such " no budget" film. id love to know because it turned out great

p.s. great advice in your last post about how to round up people and places.

thanks
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Old April 5th, 2007, 11:22 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Mekhael Trepanier View Post
hi wes great work on the trailer i really liked it

you mention you filmed the project on an XL2 with almost no budget...

did you simply use a stock XL2 ?
if you could give an inside on to what all you had to come up with for gear to make such " no budget" film. id love to know because it turned out great

p.s. great advice in your last post about how to round up people and places.

thanks
MEKHAEL
The biggest way to save on budget is to have no crew. I did everything myself. Sure I had a few people hold reflectors and move some things around the set but the only real crew member I had was an on set photographer taking still shots. I paid no one on this film. Everyone volunteered.

The camera was a plain old out of the box XL2. I bought the Canon filter kit which came with a polarizer, ND filter and a clear glass UV protection filter. I did not use the polarizer.

For lighting, I have been doing still photography for years and I had a Lowell lighting kit already. It has a 1-750w, 1-500w 1-250w and 1-500w soft box. I also had a few shop lights from Wal-Mart. $5 a piece. Just add the true color bulbs and you have cheap tungsten lights.
I love to use natural occurring light in my films. Most of my scenes I did not light at all. I just found locations that had light and I used what was there. It makes set up quick. I love the grainy effect that comes with the low light. The XL2 does awesome in low light.

I bought a solid state (digital) Marantz audio recorder and a Audio Technica shotgun mic. (About $700 for the both with audio cables and CF card) I did not use them on the set because it is a real pain to get audio on the day of the shoot. I had no crew at all so I did not have anyone to hold the mic. I only had the on camera mic on the day of the shoot. I used the Marantz and shotgun mic in post production. I did a full ADR of the whole film. In case you don't know what ADR is. I replaced every piece of dialogue in the movie with a fresh recording on a sound stage. (My friendís living room)
Audio is extremely important. If you have audio that changes in levels or cuts in and out with editing, people loose the illusion of the film.

I had a couple of actors wondering about my methods when I showed up on set all by myself with my camera in my hand and a foam core poster board as a reflector. They were expecting a huge crew with a lot of gear. To have a huge production is fun but it really is not needed! It just wastes time and money.

I had an 8' Cobra crane I borrowed from a friend but it wasnít that great. I only used one of the crane shots in the final cut.

Hereís the important list:
Canon XL2 - Canon filter kit - extra battery (For the battery I'd go with the Impact brand. Don't waste you money on the Canon brand. The Impact ones last for hours and they are half the cost. I barely ever needed the backup battery)
Marantz PMD 660
Audio Technica shotgun mic
Lowell lighting kit
Foam core poster board - as a bounce reflector
Ice chest - Always have cold bottled water

I had a Bogen tripod that was given to me but I hate to use them. I did not use a tripod on this film. I always had it on hand just in case, but I like to shoot hand held on everything. Even the dialogue. But that is just a style thing. A tripod might work for some people. If your thinking of buying an expensive tripod I would say don't waste your money. They are good if you are going to shoot an interview or a seminar or something like that. They just make a film look real stiff. I like the movement of hand held.

Of course I had a few extra pieces of equipment I borrowed here and there, but all I really needed are the things on this list. The rest is just gravy. The more complicated the equipment the longer the shoots get the more money spent. Keep things simple.

Thereís my long and drawn out answer to a simple question.
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Old April 5th, 2007, 11:59 PM   #8
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Very intriguing, the music flowed with it perfectly and that noise you had for the inverted stills and final flash was pro! I have got to get my hands on that sound...
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Old April 7th, 2007, 08:21 PM   #9
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All airsoft weapons?

If so, I have the same pistols, and mac 10 :D

That trailor was fantastic, absolutely beautiful. I cant wait for the full thing to be released, if its as interesting as the trailor, and decently priced I'd buy a DVD of it...

Anyways, keep up the good work!

Simon

Last edited by Simon Jones; April 8th, 2007 at 12:50 PM.
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Old April 9th, 2007, 07:14 PM   #10
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You def know how to talk your way into getting cool things in your movie.

I personally do not like a grainy look, but that's just me, so....


As far as a trailer goes though, it's cool. You can never judge a movie by its trailer though.....we all know that.

I love the NSX....!!!
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Old April 9th, 2007, 10:39 PM   #11
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Enjoyed the trailer. Amazing what one person can do! If you also acted in it then it would be truly a one man band!

On the subject of minimal crews, when some MGM executives showed up on one of Stanley Kubrick's movies there were only 3 people. Of course, they were shocked and thought the movie wasn't being made. Kubrick was shooting it himself. Also there's a famous Hong Kong director, whose name escapes me, who sets up a shot, yells "Action!" then goes off to his favourite restaurant for a bowl of noodles, only to return later to yell "CUT!!"
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Old April 25th, 2007, 12:50 AM   #12
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All airsoft weapons?
We used mostly airsoft weapons. We had a few real steel weapons on set. I was able to hook up with a guy who collects airsoft guns and he had converted a bunch of his guns into full metal versions. Basically he could have bought the real versions of the guns for the money he spent on the airsoft guns. Some crazy awesome looking weapons.

Another case of just asking someone if he wants to be involved with a movie. I got to use thousands of dolloars worth of weapons for free. Airsoft can be cheap way to get weapons into a movie. But it is not that cheap for the good looking ones. Use the cheap ones for the far away shots.
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Old April 25th, 2007, 06:11 PM   #13
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Hi Wes, the trailer looks great!

I just watched the Windows Media version, noticed a typo in the spelling of 'written' at the end. Otherwise, it's really cool.

Is the softness of the shots only due to deinterlacing, or is there some type of processing on it? It looks really nice. Did you use any custom preset adjustments?

-Eric
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Old April 26th, 2007, 02:00 PM   #14
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Trailer was very nie I thought. Music went well with the cuts in the video. Looks like you selected a very attractive cast that is a must cause your script is nothing without your actors bringing it out. Liked a lot of the shots and angles you selected very professional. When is this movie going to be done i would like to see the finished version of this..
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Old April 26th, 2007, 02:45 PM   #15
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Airsoft can be cheap way to get weapons into a movie. But it is not that cheap for the good looking ones. Use the cheap ones for the far away shots.
Oh trust me, I know how much airsoft can hurt the wallet... Other than filmmaking, playing and collecting airsoft is my passion.
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