Behind the Scenes on a 5 min ad peice at

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Shooting non-repeatable events: weddings, recitals, plays, performances...

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Old November 15th, 2008, 08:10 AM   #1
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Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Toronto, Canada
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Behind the Scenes on a 5 min ad peice

This was shot entirely with Canon A1s, the BtS and the feature. Over 90% had Brevi (multiple brevises) attached. We were quite surprised at the imagery this cam could produce in this setting, especially with so many touting the virtues of the EX1, we wondering how the dynamic range, low light, and color reproduction would hold up.

We were called to do a 5 minute short film promoting new media education in Niagara, as well as a behind the scenes. Not sure how often this happens but, in the end, the behind the scenes ended up having much more story and intrigue to it than the feature itself. Going into it we knew that we were going for a very high production value in both the feature and the BtS. So, rather than doing a handycam type of feel, we shot all of the BtS with the brevis, interviewed the producer and covered some of our meetings and then Konrad cut it all together.

From the beginning Konrad had free reign on how to put this together and, I must say, we were all very impressed with his vision and how solid the whole piece was when he was done. This is one of those times when there is a ton of material, and some potential of what can come from it, but I never would have thought he would have pulled this much out of it. He surely made what I did in the feature look much worse.

Two bigs things I can suggest:
1. Doing these short film projects are great and strengthening your understanding of light, movement, and story. When you spend 2 hours lighting for 3 shots you really won't look at the ambient light at a wedding the same, and you really start to feel it in a different way.
2. Shooting BtS, while it seeems like quite the hassle, is something we have found to be very valuable in both corporate and wedding work. We have many more plans in the works to follow up on these ideas and make some really wild BtS promos.

Tony and I shot most of the feature and Konrad and I shot most of the behind the scenes (which is why I am really not in this much). Tony handled lighting and I did all post work on the feature, while Konrad did all post work on the BtS. Mike helped throughout in the BtS, working with the story, and helping on the shoots (as you will see in his 'cape' scene).


Minicucci BTS - revised on Vimeo

Last edited by Patrick Moreau; November 15th, 2008 at 09:16 AM.
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Old November 15th, 2008, 09:12 AM   #2
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Multiple Brevis'? As in a Brevis attached to a Brevis? Am I reading that right?

I completely understand the value of one, but if you don't mind me asking, what effect does multiple Brevis' have?

Awesome job, by the way, although that's no surprise considering how consistently awesome your work is.
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Old November 15th, 2008, 09:17 AM   #3
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I meant we had 3 cams and 3 brevises there. Each cam only had one on it, though it would look quite funny to stack them up- not that the cam isn't long enough as is.

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Old November 15th, 2008, 09:30 AM   #4
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It was great to see something behind the scenes. Gives me a chance to see how people think when storyboarding a production. I don't have any experience in this, but would love to learn more about it. Good job on the production. If that doesn't inspire someone I don't know what will. lol
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Old November 15th, 2008, 10:19 AM   #5
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An awesome vid as always. Really enjoy watching the behind the scenes and looking at all the technical stuff. So jealous of all your gear/toys!!
I wonder how many more years until i can be become (even remotely) as good as yall...

Its finally nice to see faces to names. Is Tony the young chap at the beginning?
You have one amazing team there!!
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Old November 15th, 2008, 11:39 AM   #6
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Top class as usual Patrick. I really enjoyed this.
It re-confirms for me what I was thought in college those years ago about the importance
of the pre-production phase of a shoot.
Without it things will just fall apart.
Thanks for showing.
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Old November 15th, 2008, 05:37 PM   #7
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Great production value in the final piece. Top notch work, guys. I love Mike in the "cape". That was the best part .. sorry, Mike!

One shot did feel totally out of place for me. The shot where all the older kids crowd around him while he is looking at the monitor, and they act all impressed. I'm assuming that shot was meant to be him at the college coming up with something cool .. but there weren't any setup shots before it to show him at the college, unless you count the Niagra mousepad (but you won't catch that unless you're looking for it like I was on the 2nd watch). So anyways, it just felt out of place and abrupt to me.

I think if you had shown the mouse movement from a different angle so that you could see the Niagra logo on the mousepad, then it would have worked better .. although I suspect you were wanting to use the diploma shot for the reveal of Niagra.

Anyways, it was a minor thing. Great piece and thanks for sharing. You guys sure do have a big bagful of goodies to shoot with!
Black Label Films
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Old November 16th, 2008, 02:24 AM   #8
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What can I say, I wish all Bts of Hollywood films would be that well made. The final product is great.

I am surprised that you are surprised how good the A1 can produce, The boys from the Crank 2 movie are using it so its gotta be good :)

I'll be shooting a short scene for an actor next weekend so I know what you mean about lighting, I am quiet excited as I haven't had the chance for a while now to setup a whole scene. :)
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Old November 16th, 2008, 01:56 PM   #9
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Hey Patrick,

Great work, but To be honest I enjoyed the behind the scenes more than the promotional video. I felt like the story line could have achieved better cohesiveness and focus if maybe it was narrated.. The classmates leaning in wasn't the payoff it should have been because I had no idea that he was designing anything from watching up to that point. Overall until he was finally shown at a classroom and on campus it just looked like he was a game junky. Maybe some shots of him creating 3d models or something? Overall though I think it was well made with maybe a difficult story line to convey with just a sound track and titles mixed in. The shots were great though. Absolutely loved the water shots when the guy is at his job..

Couple quick questions.. at the :06 mark what is that rails system you are using specifically the monopole dolly thing... and at the :10 mark, what slider system is that is that you are using? Looks like a glide track but I haven't seen them in black..?


Last edited by Scott Shama; November 17th, 2008 at 04:23 AM.
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