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Old September 3rd, 2015, 08:25 PM   #1
Major Player
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Austin TX
Posts: 292
Feature: Plan X - A Comedy

Hey DV Info Net!

I'm very excited to finally tell you all about a feature film i've been working on for the last 2 1/2 years.
I present: Plan X

A mob boss kidnaps a bank teller, and interrogates him to find out who has the combination to a bank he wants to rob, the bank teller readily confesses that the man they want is John Smith. This being a common name, hilarity ensues when the mob boss instructs two of his henchman to kidnap John. The thugs end up kidnapping the wrong guy, a teenager, and when his friends find out, they vow to stop at nothing to rescue their friend.


The Movie:

Interviews with the cast:

Plan X (2015) - IMDb

Official Website:

The movie doesn't go public online till tomorrow, but I wanted to post this here now with the full movie link.

Production history:

This film was (like many) a no budget production.
Meaning: we raised no money to cover the cost of anything for this film.

The actors, all donated their time.
The crew: Me, and the Director also donated our time.
Props were already owned, or loaned to us for the course of filming.


The script was written, and finished in late December of 2012.

2 people were involved in it's conception, the director, and one of the cast members

Pre production involved finding people willing to play a part (not difficult for this film, as we had finished a short 40 minute movie from summer of 2012, and most of the cast from that film returned, and their friends wanted in on the action as well)

Locations were also scouted, and many of the parents of the cast were willing to let us use their property, and homes.

Filming began at the end of April 2013, in Texas this is when it's starting to get really hot most summers.

Filming took place in a variety of locations in central Texas, mostly based around Georgetown, liberty hill, and round rock.

Filming in the summer was very difficult that year, for the crew it was merely very hot, but for many of the actors it was terrible, as they were often fully dressed in multiple layer clothing outside.

Temperatures were often as high as 105 so you can imagine how bad it was.

Most of the actors were fresh out of high school, so when we were still shooting into the fall we lost many people as they were going off to college.

We worked around this as best we could. often shooting closeups of whoever was in town, and then stitching the shots together to make sense where more than one actor was in the same scene.

We went through a variety of cameras, and equipment along the way.

We started shooting this production on the Sony ex1r, as it was nice and lightweight, but then went back to what we had shot our previous film on: the Sony PMW 350k.

we used an ezfx jib/crane on the big all day shoots when we knew we would have enough time to setup a shot with it.

Audio was recorded on a stereo mic inside a homemade boom pole (thanks filmriot!)
we ran over xlr into the camera.

Occasionally we would use the senheiser wireless g3 mic kit.

Lighting was mostly ambient, we did not really have anything that made for a good nice looking light most times, so we typically shot with what was available on location.
Obviously this was not preferable, but we made do with what we had available to us.

A very nice gentleman built a homemade dolly that we used for 3 scenes.

By this time it was winter of 2013, and we were still shooting when able with anyone that was in town.

At this point the Director/Editor was also logging clips in premier, and sorting them all into the various scenes.

As we did not really have any crew other than me and the director, we were not able to use a clapper, so clips had to be sorted manually from the raw camera files.

I believe by the time the production was done, we had just over 9,400 clips from filming.

Que spring of 2014, and it was around that time I made a Facebook page for the project, and started to do updates occasionally to keep people aware of our progress.

I was pretty busy at this point as I was still working my day job, most of the cast was still at college, and the Director was working on various other projects too.

When summer of 2014 rolled around I had just picked up a dji phantom 2 with a go pro, and we used it to film a few clips from a chase scene in the movie.

We were thrilled with the results, but I really did not like the fisheye, and wanted something with a more cinematic look to it.

Again we shot all through the summer of 2014, shooting was complicated as many of the actors went and spent the summer at a camp in Minnesota, so we were in a time crunch to finish the shooting for characters who would be going out of state soon.

we ended up having to re shoot a large scene that fall, as the previous location owner had moved, and we were unable to finish the scene at the original location.
that set us back, as many of the actors in that scene were at camp.

Fall of 2014 I built a dji s1000 equipped with a gh4, and we started shooting transitional, and b-roll shots on it that fall.

The results were stellar, and we could not be happier with how the movie was looking at that point.

By winter of 2015, the vast majority of filming was completed, and all that really remained were a few pickup shots, with various actors, and getting b-roll of various things in the script (i.e clock ticking, water dripping)
We shot the last few parts like this in 180fps on the sony f5.

Spring of 2015, on to full scale editing!
At this point I had a little bit of flexibility in my schedule, and started going over to the directors house whenever possible to help him edit, offer suggestions, and work on the vfx, titles, etc...

by may of 2015 the movie was very far along in editing, and we started asking the main characters with dialogue to come do voice overs for problematic scenes with annoying ambient audio, or other miscellaneous technical issues.

In june of 2015 I really started ramping things up on getting the word out there about the movie.
I started posting bi-weekly with production updates on the facebook page, which had aquired a modest 76 likes at that point.

Interest kept going as the word spread about the film, and me and the director started discussing where the best place would be to show the film for its premier.

At this point we had at least 35 people who would be attending as they were either in the film, or closely related to people in it.
Neither of our houses were big enough to accommodate that many people.

One of the actors in a God send, mentioned to us that he knew the manager at a local movie theater, and might be able to talk to him about us showing it there.
We were thrilled, and encouraged him to do so.

One thing led to another, and the date was set for august 17th at 7:00pm.

The race was on as it was july, and we still had not put the finishing touches on the film.

Facebook likes were increasing daily as word continued to spread, and the director kept working on the film while I made a short trailer to help get people more excited for the movie.

When the trailer came out three weeks before the movie, facebook likes spiked, and we crested 120 likes.

10 days before the premier I setup an event on eventbrite, where people could get tickets (free)

RSVPs started to come in, and the first day after we announced the event, we had over 50 registrations.

By the time the day of the premier came we had completely used up all 195 tickets, and still had people requesting more.

The movie was shown to a crowd of over 200 people on august 17th, and the feedback was very positive (very likely biased though :p)

In my next post I'll go into more detail about some of the issues we ran into in the final 48 hours leading up to the premier.

If you have questions about anything please feel free to ask.
I hope you enjoy our feature film: Plan X

(images are giving me trouble uploading, I'll try to get that fixed
Tom Bostick is offline   Reply

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