Monday, February 4, 2008

Zombies, zombies everywhere!


Saturday we shot a commercial for the March Horrorfind convention in College Park, MD. Since George Romero is one of the guests (along with cast members of the Dead movies) we wanted to do a zombie- themed commercial. One with some zip.

Joe, our director, came up with a great idea: a hip granny reminisces about Romero movies and then kicks some zombie ass. And there was a lot of ass to kick. We were expecting 10 extras at the most, but wound up with at least 25--plenty to pull off a Romero-esque horde. Of course, we only have 30 seconds to work with--it's amazing how short that really is--so we couldn't do all that we wanted.

Overall, the shoot went very well. The weather was cold but clear, and not too sunny; too much sun wreaks havoc with digital video. And the setting was awesome. We have to shoot there again.

To be honest, I was a little nervous going into the shoot. This was my first time behind the camera for Timewarp. That role was always reserved for Don Dohler, our mentor--and this was the first shoot since he passed away in 2006. I was fully aware of the large shoes I was filling. But just kept thinking about making him proud.

Many thanks to Joe for keeping the zombies under control, and for checking to see if I focused the lens :lol: , and thanks to Stewie and Zig, our faithful crew, for helping out. Zig actually reminded me about the ND (neutral density) filter on the XL1. It helps with overexposure so you don't have to stop down too far. That was a big duh.




The crew

I mentioned earlier that 30 seconds is a very short time. Well, I did my first pass cutting the commercial, and it came in at 45 seconds, an eternity in editing. After a couple more passes, I'm down to 34 seconds. I've had to chop some lines, and make some shots shorter, and generally be creative. But it's not over yet. I guess I need a chainsaw. Luckily, we plan to make an extended version so we can put the rest in. We filmed a ton of zombie footage. No way we waste that.

And, by the way, everything was in focus. :D

I'll post the final version of the commercial when I'm done.

A Romero Tradition